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California: Compliance Teams Target More Than 19,000 Retailers


The California State Board of Equalization (BOE) is committed to sending Statewide Compliance and Outreach Program (SCOP) teams to every non-residential business in the state. It's a big job, but with persistence, it can be done.

More than 13,000 letters were sent to businesses and retailers in August. The most recent news release regarding this process (dated September 25, 2012) reveals that 19,071 businesses in the following zip codes have received letters about upcoming SCOP team visits:

Menlo Park (94025),
San Francisco (94110),
Pollock Pines (95726),
Camino (95709),
Placerville (95667),
El Dorado (95623),
El Dorado Hills (95762),
Shingle Springs (95682),
Sunnyvale (94086),
Santa Maria (93454),
Scotts Valley (95066),
La Cañada Flintridge (91011),
Newport Beach (92663),
Santa Ana (92704),
Quail Valley (92587),
San Diego (92108),
Cabazon (92230),
Whitewater (92282),
National City (91950),
Riverside (92504),
Hemet (92545), and
Julian (92036).

There are seven SCOP teams in the state of California, each covering a specific region. Officials "conduct door-to-door, in-person visits based on zip code." Only business-related questions will be asked, and permits and licenses will be checked. Officials will not inquire about personal financial information, and anyone operating a business from their home will not be visited by SCOP.

During the past four years, California Board of Equalization SCOP teams have visited and verified more than 330,000 businesses throughout the state. To date, approximately 2% of the businesses visited have been found to be noncompliant.

According to the BOE, SCOP team visits help:

  1. ensure that "noncompliant businesses do not have an unfair advantage over registered businesses";
  2. close the $2+ billion "sales and use 'tax gap' -- the difference between the amount of taxes owed and the amount paid."

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Sales tax rates, rules, and regulations change frequently. Although we hope you'll find this information helpful, this blog is for informational purposes only and does not provide legal or tax advice.
Gail Cole
Avalara Author
Gail Cole
Gail Cole
Avalara Author Gail Cole
Gail began researching and writing about sales tax in 2012 and has been fascinated with it ever since. She has a penchant for uncovering unusual tax facts, and endeavors to make complex sales tax laws more digestible for both experts and laypeople.