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General Questions

What is Free / Open Source software?

What is Streamlined Sales Tax?

Streamlined Sales Tax provides a method of registering for and submitting returns for state sales tax. It also allows tax payers to securely submit payment information electronically.

Please refer to the Streamlined Sales Tax project website for additional information.

What is Modernized eFile?

Modernized eFile is the next generation electronic filing system being developed for income tax. It utilizes XML, web services, and strong authentication to securely transfer tax data between the IRS and the state tax department.

Please refer to the Modernized eFile website for additional information.

The Gateway Project and Open Source

Why is the Gateway free / open source software?

  • Cost - It takes very little effort and doesn't cost anything to publish the source code, the project uses a free service called Source Forge. If outside source code contributions are received it will actually result in a net savings because the contributed code is code that participating states didn't have to pay developers to write.

  • To be a good Neighbor - Many states are implementing Modernized eFile, Streamlined Sales Tax, and other XML-based electronic return systems. Sharing the code with fellow states is a nice thing to do because it helps them accomplish their goals while reducing their costs. Additionally, other agencies and departments could adapt and enhance the code to meet their needs.

  • Education - People who are studying Java software development could learn by studying our code. Our code has a lot of interesting pieces in it that aren't directly related to taxes (our event logging system, authentication system, unit test setup, etc). Developers of open source software can legally copy and use the code in their projects.

  • Better Software - With more people using the code and more developers looking at the code, bugs would be more easily spotted and fixed. Sharing the code with the transmitters who send us data allows them to test changes to their software and debug problems more easily. They could examine exactly what our code does with their input and setup their own private testing environment.


Who develops the Gateway software?

There are two states currently involved with the development of the Modernized eFile package, Vermont and Oklahoma. There is one state currently developing the Streamlined Sales Tax package, Vermont.

Who uses the Gateway software?

There are two states that plan on using the Modernized eFile package, Vermont and Oklahoma. There is one state currently using the Streamlined Sales Tax package, Vermont.

How can my state begin using and/or developing the software?
Copyright © 2007, 2008, 2009 Vermont Department of Taxes

Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.3 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the section entitled "GNU Free Documentation License".