from the hill

White House Threatens Veto Over IRS Budget Cuts

The White House is threatening a veto to the House version of the fiscal 2017 Financial Services and General Government Appropriations bill because of its inclusion of $236 million in additional cuts to the Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) budget.

A statement issued last week read:

“The administration strongly objects to the $766 million reduction in funding for the IRS compared to the FY 2017 budget request. This reduction would bring IRS funding to FY 1993 levels, in real terms, hindering the agency’s efforts to provide robust service to taxpayers, improve enforcement operations, and implement new statutory responsibilities.”

Several amendments were introduced at a hearing last week, including one by Rep. John Mulvaney (R-SC) to require the IRS to spend user fees on taxpayer services.

“We hear all the time on the Oversight and Government Reform Committee that the IRS doesn’t have enough money to deal with taxpayer services. The reason that phone calls go unanswered, that there are busy signals, that people aren’t getting the services they want from the IRS, is that they don’t have any money,” Mulvaney said during Tuesday’s hearing. “We can argue back and forth as to why that is, but one of those reasons is they’ve been the user fees that they used to use to fund those operations, and are using them for other things.”

During the hearing, Rep. Jose Serrano (D-NY) also expressed concerns regarding the budget cuts, saying, “Cutting our primary source of revenue makes little sense. Funding the IRS at this level will hurt those trying to pay their taxes correctly and encourage tax cheats to engage in more bad behavior.”

Posted in From the Hill

Tags: budget, IRS, Oversight and Government Reform, Internal Revenue Service

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