Reuters news wire, Tue 01 Jul 1997

Australian taxman unmoved by blondes

CANBERRA, July 1 (Reuter) - Australian bosses might prefer blondes, but the tax office won't give their secretaries a rebate for changing their hair colour.

As Australia entered its annual fiscal silly season on Tuesday, when millions of workers fiddle their figures to try to claw back tax payments, the association of tax accountants published a list of enthusiastic claims destined for failure.

Among them were a car repairer's claim for the cost of his "guard dog" - a miniature poodle that couldn't even bark - and a secretary's attempt to claim the costs of dying her hair because her male boss preferred blondes.

Another worker tried unsuccessfully to recover the costs of donations to the Church of Scientology, saying attaining inner peace helped him at work.

Association chief Ray Regan urged taxpayers to be a little more careful when they fill in their tax returns for the 1996/97 fiscal year, which ended on Monday.

[Press articles on Scientology]