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Our new, expanded subscription services became available on July 20, and we hope you agree that it was worth the wait. We're sorry for the delay, and appreciate your patience.

FTB announces executive appointments

Geoffrey R. Way became the new FTB Chief Counsel on August 2, upon the retirement of Chief Counsel John Davies.

Way, most recently the director of the Administrative Services Division, has been with FTB since 1992. In addition to his experience in private law practice, Way's previous positions with the department include assistant director of the Legislative Services Bureau, and several years as a Tax Counsel at FTB.

Ben Miller of the FTB Legal Department is appointed to CEA V (Career Executive Assignment), the highest civil service classification. Miller will continue in his role as Counsel, Multistate Tax Affairs. He is widely considered one of the national pioneers in the unitary method for taxing corporations.

Bill Jones is the new chief of the Accounts Receivable Management (ARM) Division, which administers the tax collection programs. Jones has worked in the ARM Division for 11 years, as director of the Field & Complex Account Collection Bureau, the Revenue Recovery Services Bureau, and the Special Programs Bureau. Lisa Crowe, former director of the ARM Division, replaced Way as the director of the Administrative Services Division.

"Usability" of FTB's Website gets recognition

Our investment in emphasizing usability is paying off. We wrote of our emphasis on usability in our November/December 2005 issue (page 8 "Watch for FTB's new and improved Website"). We introduced you to our two, new certified usability analysts - the first two certified in state government.

Human Factors International, a software usability company, recently recognized FTB analyst Donna Freeman as "certified usability analyst of the month." Freeman has been an advocate for improved usability, serving as the usability sub-group lead for IOUCA, (the state's Information Organization, Usability, Currency, and Accessibility working group), playing a key role in developing usability standards for all California State Websites. Freeman has also represented FTB in a collaboration with the state's Board of Equalization, which processes sales and use tax, and the Employment Development Department, which administers employment taxes. These three agencies are represented on the California Tax Service Center Website, providing a variety of state and federal information. FTB's new Website won a 2006 Gold Award at California's annual State Information Officers Council (SiOC) event, evidence of our continuing commitment to give you a simplified, "user friendly" experience on our Website, and with our services.