2021 has been an intensely tough year in so many ways for Victoria, and undoubtedly the past 12 months have changed the face of our state. We've seen friends, colleagues and strangers face untold difficulties as the global pandemic continues to unfold.
As I have come to expect, we administered Victoria’s taxes, duties, levies and grants efficiently and effectively – but we did so much more. When fellow Victorians needed our help, I was very proud to see us step up again and again to assist our customers as best we could through the delivery of coronavirus tax relief measures.
In managing these Victorian Government measures, we quickly helped to make a tangible difference in people’s lives. An effort made all the more amazing by the fact that our adaptable workforce remained working remotely this year while maintaining a high standard of service delivery. It’s been a tremendous effort by all involved.
Some of the highlights have included implementing 21 coronavirus tax relief measures, answering 336,053 phone calls (the vast majority of which were answered in under five minutes), providing private rulings within KPIs, and processing more than 39,000 HomeBuilder applications, while collecting about $19.6 billion in revenue for the state.
We have also been critical to the rollout of further government initiatives for small businesses, first home buyers and many others. Our expertise is needed ahead for a very challenging and busy legislative program next year, with a number of significant revenue and tax relief measures announced for us to implement and administer, such as the Victorian Homebuyer Fund and the mental health and wellbeing surcharge.
This year the State Revenue Office was also crowned with the Leading Employer Award from IPAA Victoria, the Institute of Public Administration. The award recognises our innovative and holistic approach to our valued people, from creating a positive culture to strong leadership, as well as developing employee capabilities and providing a supportive workplace.
No one thought we would still be working at home this year, but here we are, and I’m delighted to say that our staff continue to perform at high standards for our customers. And we haven’t stood still despite the disruptions over the past 18 months. Our workforce is constantly evolving in skills and experience, especially in the areas of compliance and technology. We have maintained a strong focus on our customers and service delivery, with training and education a key element of staff development.
I’ve been proud of how we have supported one another, and the commitment I’ve seen on display to help Victorians. Our staff have been flexible and agile when called on to administer tax relief. I’m optimistic that the new skills we learned this year will have lasting benefits for the organisation.
I thank our leadership team and staff for helping to make all this happen in 2020–21 and I look forward to brighter days ahead!
CEO and Commissioner of State Revenue Victoria