Forbes, IRS Forced To Release Names Of Targeted Groups, by Peter J. Reilly:
So we had another Tea Party decision on April 1 of all days. NorCal Tea Party Patriots is one of the ten organizations in a lawsuit against the IRS because of delays and intrusive scrutiny while they were applying for exempt status. They want it to be a class action suit, but they need information from the IRS to determine what organizations should be in the class. ...
The IRS argued that it could not make those disclosures, because they would be in violation of Code Section 6103 which protects the confidentiality of returns and return information. The judge went with NorCal on this one.
The Court concludes that the return information sought is directly related to the issue of class certification in this federal court proceeding. The names of the putative class member organizations and their control dates—the date which the putative class member organizations submitted their applications for tax exempt status to the IRS—are directly related to the issue of class certification. Plaintiffs seek the return information of the putative class members to prove to the Court that the Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(a) and 23(b) requirements such as typicality, commonality, and whether the IRS acted on a grounds that applied generally to the putative class are satisfied. ...
I’m beginning to despair of their ever being an end to the IRS Scandal on Day 714 by the TaxProf count, as I write this. I thought this latest decision might be a good opportunity to reach out to someone who might have a different view on the whole matter.
Frank Wolpe, Professor Emeritus at Bentley University has written a white paper about rebuilding the IRS. (download)
The paper identifies the ill-conceived massive 1998 structural reorganization and division (like salami-slicing) of field operations as a major cause of the IRS’s current legal battles and “downward slide.” In its 1998 aftermath, we were all left with an overly centralized Washington IRS National Office and an undermanaged array of field operations. That’s where the Tea Party scandal started; and, even more importantly, it need never be repeated. Indeed, such events must stop!
“With that recognition, change-makers can travel a 2015 bipartisan pathway to addressing a wrong-headed 1998 “solution” to a 1998 non-existent structural problem by introducing a 2015 proposal for a National Office consolidation (slimming down) coupled with a field operations decentralization (closer to customers and ending the practice of absentee senior management without local accountability).
Of course the notion that the scandal must have actually started in the Oval Office still has an irresistible grip in some circles, so a boring reorganization just won’t be satisfying. So maybe it never will end.
Hans von Spakovsky of cnsnews.com wrote:
The arguments in this case by the Justice Department are another example of how the IRS has been hiding behind Section 6103. That law was intended to prevent the IRS from publicly disclosing private tax information—such as its illegal disclosure of the tax returns of the National Organization for Marriage (the IRS agreed to pay National Organization for Marriage $50,000 to settle that case in June of 2014). But the IRS has been trying to use this law to prevent having to disclose its abusive treatment of taxpayers.
- The IRS Scandal, Day 715 (Apr. 24, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 714 (Apr. 23, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 713 (Apr. 22, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 712 (Apr. 21, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 711 (Apr. 20, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 710 (Apr. 19, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 709 (Apr. 18, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 708 (Apr. 17, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 707 (Apr. 16, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 706 (Apr. 15, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 705 (Apr. 14, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 704 (Apr. 13, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 703 (Apr. 12, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 702 (Apr. 11, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 701 (Apr. 10, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 601-700 (Dec. 31, 2014 - April 9, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 501-600 (Sept. 22, 2014-Dec. 30, 2014)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 401-500 (June 14, 2014 - Sept. 21,2014)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 301-400 (Mar. 6, 2014 - June 13, 2014)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 201-300 (Nov. 26, 2013 - Mar. 5, 2014)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 101-200 (Aug. 18, 2013 - Nov. 25, 2013)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 1-100 (May 10, 2013 - Aug. 17, 2013)