At every level, government’s burgeoning efforts to digitize its processes are finding its solution in standardized formats emerging from the Accredited Standards Committee (ASC) X12 Government Subcommittee. Comprised of two Task Groups (TG), the first – TG1 - focuses on new X12 development and EDI maintenance and the second – TG2 - focuses on XML and X12 EDI development and maintenance for tax information and interchange development and is hosted in cooperation with the Federation of Tax Administrators (FTA).
With the recent boom of ASC X12 approved messages enabling electronic exchange of business data using X12’s Context Inspired Component Architecture (CICA), TG1 is moving full speed ahead developing new CICA messages. Containing numerous reusable components that can be expressed as XML schema, TG1 just released a new CICA message - Commercial Asset Visibility (CAV) Repair Item Receipt Notification. In the context of the U.S. Department of Defense, this message communicates a repair contractor’s receipt of an item. Traditionally, CAV projects track, manage and account for government assets undergoing repairs at contractor facilities. The W3C-compliant XML schema based on this X12 CICA message can be freely downloaded at xml.X12.org.
Numerous additional X12 CICA messages are in development in TG1, including eight new CICA messages complete and under ASC X12 member review:
1. Defense Logistics Management System (DLMS) 180 Customer Excess Report FTE-FTG
2. CAV Item Induction Notification
3. CAV Awaiting Parts Notification
4. CAV Item Reinduction Notification
5. CAV Repair Completion Notification
6. CAV Item Shipment Notification (includes supply, transportation and Wide Area Workflow data elements)
7. CAV Condemn Notification
8. CAV Proof of Shipment Notification
And an additional nine other CICA messages for the USAF’S CAV Project are in the works.
This is all in addition to its ongoing review and approval of X12 EDI data maintenance items for numerous widely implemented transaction sets used throughout the U.S. government.
To bolster government’s electronic tax filing capabilities, the X12 Government Subcommittee’s TG2 – Tax Information and Interchange Development - develops XML specifications and schema that support multiple electronic tax filing options/alternatives for its tax-filing representatives. These specifications help tax authorities achieve the level of electronic activity that they need to realize cost savings and other advantages associated with electronic filing.
In addition to its standard’s activity, TG2’s work is also a testament to ASC X12’s commitment to collaboration. TG2 is a cooperative effort between ASC X12 and FTA, with both organizations hosting its meetings and providing the forum and the tools – the Altova Enterprise XML Suite – (via the X12 Tools for Members program) to perform its standards development work.
To date, TG2 has implemented the following XML applications:
1. Federal State Employer Taxes, implemented 2003
2. Streamlined Sales Tax, implemented in October 2005
3. Numerous EDI messages over the years
Maintenance continues on all of the above and new development is taking place in three other areas:
1. Federal/State Corporation XML transmissions from the vendor community to go live January 2006
2. Federal/State Partnership XML transmissions from the vendor community to go live January 2007
3. Federal/State Individual Tax Return (1040) transmissions from the vendor community to go live
In addition to its specific standards development work, the X12 Government Subcommittee actively engages in ASC X12’s cross-industry environment made up of subcommittees and groups that focus on business processes in such areas as finance, supply chain, and transportation. Government subcommittee members also sit on X12’s Technical Assessment Subcommittee and Procedures Review Board, charged respectively with ensuring interoperability and open, consensus-based processes were followed across the committee.
ASC X12 members meet face-to-face three times per year to develop X12 standards, with the next meeting taking place February 5-10, 2006 in Seattle. Both task groups host interim meetings in various locations of the country to accommodate the task groups’ members. TG2’s next interim meeting, hosted by FTA, will take place Dec. 5-9 in Chandler, Ariz.
For additional information, visit www.X12.org and for additional information on TG2 activities, visit www.taxadmin.org.
Stephen Bouchard is Chairman of the ASC X12 Government Subcommittee and the ITD Senior E-Systems Manager at the Comptroller of Maryland. He can be reached at email@example.com.