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On the Taxes and Other Obligations Concerning Independent Operators

Decree of the Council of People's Commissars of the U.S.S.R. and of the Central Committee of the C.P.S.U.(B)

19 April 1938

On the basis of numerous facts, the Council of People's Commissars of the U.S.S.R. and the Central Committee of the C.P.S.U.(B) have established that the policy and decrees of the State and of the Party concerning independent operators or free-lance workers, are violated by the organs of the Party and of Soviets in the Republics, the regions and the administrative regions. The obligations to the State are established by Soviet laws for the individual in the sphere of taxes, the delivery of grain, and meat. However, instead of guaranteeing the execution of these obligations, the local Party and district organs tolerate a situation in which the free-lance worker fails to fulfil his obligations to the State. In a series of administrative regions and regions, the free-lance workers are absolutely not called upon to deliver meat, and the execution of the tasks outlined in the district plan concerning the delivery of meat, falls back on the Kolkhozes.

In this way, the Party and Soviet organizations put these free-lance workers in a privileged position in comparison with the Kolkhozes, which is a fundamental contradiction of existing laws.

The horses, not taxable to the free-lance workers are, as a general rule, used by them, not in their agricultural efforts, but as a means of speculation and gain.

In the face of the tolerance of the Party and Soviet organs in the districts, the managements of the Kolkhozes, violating the statutes of the agricultural artel come very often to the practice of engaging free-lance workers in the Kolkhozes, and pay them more than the Kolkhozines for the days work, a fact which can only undermine discipline in the Kolkhozes.

This incorrect attitude to independent operations brings as a result direct prejudice owing to the ultimate engagement of free-lance workers in the Kolkhozes.

All this bears witness to the presence of grave mistakes on the part of the organs of the Soviets, and of the Parties of the Republics, of the regions and the administrative regions concerning the freelance worker.

The Council of Peoples' Commissars of the U.S.S.R. and the Central Committee of the C.P.S.U.(B) decree:

1. To oblige the Central Committees of the national Communist Parties, the executive committees of regions and administrative regions, the Council of the People's Commissars of the Republics, the executive committees of the Soviets of regions and of administrative regions, to bring to an end this anti-State and anti-Party practice of complacency concerning the free-lance workers and to severely watch out that these individuals do carry out exactly all their obligations to the State, concerning taxes and delivery of grain and meat, etc.

2. To re-establish, from August 25th, 1938, a state tax on the horses of free-lance workers.

3. To oblige the Party and Soviet organizations of the Republics, regions and administrative regions not to tolerate in the future that the free-lance workers manage to avoid their responsibilities (work on the roads, working in the forests, education service, hospital service, etc.) and in the same way not to tolerate the holding of any privileges at the expense of the Kolkhozines.

V. M. Molotov
President of the Council of People's Commissars

J. Stalin
Secretary of the Central Committee of the C.P.S.U.(B)

20 April 1938