- Associated Press - Friday, September 29, 2017

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) - New Mexico’s top insurance regulator says that an independent audit of unpaid insurance premium taxes shows far less money is owed to the state than previously thought.

State Insurance Superintendent John Franchini announced Friday that a preliminary summary of the audit shows potential underpayments to the state amount to a fraction of the $193 million previously estimated.

Franchini’s office declined to provide specific dollar estimates for missing taxes under the audit by Atlanta-based Examination Resources. Agency spokeswoman Heather Widler says more information should be publicly available after documents are reviewed by the Office of the State Auditor.

The new audit examines premium tax filings from 30 companies since 2003. It is unclear how the audit addresses accusations by state prosecutors that a Presbyterian Healthcare Services subsidiary illegally avoided taxes.

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