If you've had trouble getting through to the Inland Revenue Department on the phone lately, you're not alone.

The Public Service Association says about 70,000 calls went unanswered between June 25 and July 5.

Many people's income tax returns were due on July 7.

PSA national secretary Richard Wagstaff says there's a seasonal component to phone calls but a large organisation like IRD should be able to deal with it.

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"Unfortunately they've gone through a change process and despite being warned about the likely result of that decisions they're making, ie that they won't be able to deal with peaks, they've gone ahead and done it.''

Richard Wagstaff says there's no good excuse for such a high number of calls going unanswered.