The California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA) is eyeing Generative Artificial Intelligence (GenAI) as a means to enhance customer service for businesses and help businesses file their taxes.

“With the proper guardrails and engagement in place, the state can leverage opportunities to smartly and safely use GenAI to enhance the basic functions of our government”, said Amy Tong, secretary of the California Government Operations Agency.

To meet its mission, CDTFA administers more than 40 tax and fee programs, and fields more than 800,000 inquiries a year from taxpayers. CDTFA is specifically looking to leverage GenAI to improve the call center experience. The department has released a Request for Innovative Ideas (RFI2) and is seeking a solution that will use GenAI to quickly search expansive reference materials and provide possible responses to taxpayers who reach out via telephone and live chat.

In its problem statement, CDTFA said it is looking for a solution that will meet the following requirements:

  • Vendor solution is a pre-trained, fully functional GenAI solution;
  • Vendor will ensure the GenAI solution integrates with California Department of Technology’s (CDT) managed cloud environments;
  • Vendor will host all other non-GenAI solution systems within CDT’s managed cloud environments;
  • Vendor will adhere to CDT’s SIMM 140 Cloud Security Guide;
  • Vendor will conduct any required data pre-processing on State provided data for the purpose of tuning the GenAI solution, including scanning the data for and, as appropriate, blocking sensitive/classified data;
  • Vendor will monitor, report on, and as necessary, block GenAI solution prompt inputs for sensitive/classified data and any other potentially harmful prompt methods;
  • Vendor will monitor and report on GenAI solution responses for factual accuracy, coherence, and appropriateness and allow for periodic manual reviews; and
  • Vendor will store all input/output data within CDT’s managed cloud environments.

“We know taxes are complicated, and our team works day in and day out to help customers navigate those complexities”, said CDTFA Director Nick Maduros. “Our goal is to use GenAI to make it easier for taxpayers to pay their taxes on time so we can more efficiently fund the essential services that benefit all Californians.”

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Kate Polit
Kate Polit
Kate Polit is MeriTalk SLG's Assistant Copy & Production Editor, covering Cybersecurity, Education, Homeland Security, Veterans Affairs