Thursday, April 23, 2015
House Ways & Means Committee Majority Staff Report, Doing Less With Less: IRS’s Spending Decisions Harm Taxpayers (Apr. 22, 2015):
During the 2015 tax-filing season, the IRS provided what its own Commissioner described as “abysmal” customer service, blaming skyrocketing wait times for telephone and in-person assistance on agency budget cuts. The IRS even called budget cuts “a tax cut for tax cheats.” But a close review of the agency’s spending shows the IRS deliberately cut $134 million in funding for customer service to pay for other activities. Spending decisions entirely under the IRS’s control led to 16 million fewer taxpayers receiving IRS assistance this filling season. Other spending choices, including prioritizing employee bonuses and union activity on the taxpayer’s dime, used up resources that otherwise could have been used to assist another 10 million taxpayers.
The IRS’s spending choices and mismanagement of resources raise serious questions about the nature and extent of the agency’s self-described budget crisis and its commitment to serving the taxpayer.
Press and blogosphere coverage: