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Tax & bribery

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Your local han taxes your village using the jomen system, with the tax inspector arriving every five years, during spring, to assess your harvests over the previous five years, and taxes being collected in autumn. Tax is based on your outputs of staple food crops, and runs at about 40%. It is payable in rice itself, not any monetary equivalent.

When the tax inspector visits, you will have the opportunity to bribe him into lowering your tax rates. The reduction in the tax rate will depend on the amount that you offer as a bribe; however, you will always have to pay at least a token amount of tax, so bribing above a certain level will give you no benefit. On the other hand, if you offer a very low bribe, the tax inspector may be insulted and raise your taxes instead of lowering them. From time to time you will also come across honest tax inspectors, and your bribe will have no effect.

When considering how much to offer as a bribe, look at the current price of rice and the amount of tax you will have to pay per year without a bribe. Making your bribe roughly equivalent to the value of one year’s tax tends to work well, but try raising and lowering it to get a feel for how the inspectors will react to different bribes. Clearly, offering anything more than you will be likely to save over the five year tax period is a waste of money.

If you do not have enough rice to pay your tax for a given year, the deficit will be carried over to the following year. However, if this is your situation, sort it out as quickly as you can. Buy rice if you have to do so, and bribe the tax inspector aggressively. If you fail to pay for taxes for several years running, the han will become extremely displeased with you and may remove you as village headman.