Skip to comments.Revenge: Republicans to Strip $341 Million From IRS in Response to Scandals
Posted on 07/05/2014 8:06:40 PM PDT by smoothsailing
July 4, 2014
After months of frustration with the IRS over the targeting scandal and lost emails, House Republicans will exact some revenge next week by passing legislation that cuts the IRS operating budget by $341 million compared to current levels.
GOP leaders plan to call up a spending bill for fiscal year 2015 that funds the IRS and other agencies, but singles out the IRS for the targeting scandal and other problems that have surfaced over the last few years.
The committee remains troubled by the activities of the Internal Revenue Service including the inappropriate singling out of certain tax-exempt groups based on their political beliefs, wasteful spending on conferences and videos, and providing bonuses to staff without evaluating their conduct or tax compliance, the House Appropriations Committee wrote in a report accompanying the bill.
Last years spending bill took some steps against the IRS, but the committee said more needs to be done to make sure the IRS stops targeting conservative groups, and stops wasting money. Last year, for example, it was revealed that the IRS spent $60,000 on a Star Trek parody video, which the agency eventually agreed did not reflect the best stewardship of resources.
More recently, the IRS has frustrated Congress by saying it lost emails from Lois Lerner that Republicans sought as part of their investigation into the targeting scandal.
Given these concerns, the committee cannot support the administrations proposal to increase the IRS by more than $1 billion over the fiscal year 2014 level, the bill report states.
The legislation funds the IRS at $10.95 billion the $341 million reduction is a cut of about 3 percent.
This funding level is sufficient for the IRS to perform its core duties, including taxpayer services and the proper collection of funds, but will require the agency to streamline and make better use of its budget, the committee said.
Aside from just the funding cut, the bill prohibits the IRS from issuing a new regulation dealing with tax-exempt groups, and prohibits the IRS from issuing bonuses without examining employee conduct or whether employees have paid their own personal taxes.
Earlier this year, it was found that more than 1,000 IRS workers who had failed to pay their taxes on time received more than $1 million in bonuses over the last few years. In April, GOP senators proposed legislation to prohibit bonuses to IRS workers with tax troubles.
The spending bill would also prevent the IRS from spending any money to target groups based on their ideological beliefs, or for exercising their First Amendment rights. And, it would prevent spending on more Star Trek videos, and require detailed reporting on how the IRS spends its money.
The bill would also prevent the IRS from any further implementation of Obamacare.
At a time when the IRS has demonstrated little ability to either self-police or self-correct, the IRS has even more authority over Americans health coverage, the committee wrote. The committee finds this expansion of IRS authority to be unacceptable and, therefore, prohibits funding to implement the individual mandate and prohibits transfers from the Department of Health and Human Services to fund the IRSs implementation of the Affordable Care Act.
Once the House passes the bill, it will go to the Senate, and could be the subject of a House-Senate negotiation later this year.
Revenge ?! Sounds like a GESTURE.
Cut their budget in HALF and I would say that’s a START, before 10 or so INCARCERATIONS.
No historical reason to believe otherwise.
Kill the IRS.
I think so too. Cutting it in half would be a good start.
Are these the same Republicans who did away with the debt ceiling, allowing President Obama to print up money and spend it without restraint? A budget is now meaningless.
After Harry Reid gets done with it Boehner will spread his cheeks nice and wide and take it like the little ***** he is.
That'll show the bastards.
Oh, my!!! They're going to cut the IRS operating budget by a whole 3 percent? That'll teach 'em, you betcha.
$341 million? That’s less than 12 days operating expenses for the IRS.
Flat tax and then cut the other half.
Throw the bums out on the street.
That’s pathetic. So they don’t get to go bowling every Saturday now. DEFUND AND DESTROY!!!
How does Obama pay for all those Czars and their staff ? Go after that ,you could save billions . These Czars must have every US secret by now
Their budget for 2013 was $13 BILLION..!
Their cut here means a decrease of 1/33, or 3% !
Imagine that at your company you had acted as a tool of political terror:
How many people here think their pay would be cut by 3% ?
This will be great if they actually carry through. Next, cut the border patrol budget (they’re misusing it); deny any funding for transporting, housing, re-settling illegal aliens; cut the EPA budget to zero (again, they’re misusing it); cut the ObamaCare budget.
3% ? Ouch
Will they have to give up their SWAT Teams?
Nonsense,, we should be investigating the explosion in disability claims by liebrals, that’s gotta be in the billions..
Put their funding at ZER0 until they cry uncle.
Maybe they will have to sell some ammo....
Better yet give them $341.00 to run on. (Yes the digits and decimal point is correct)
It’s a start. Here’s the wording from the actual bill (H. Rept. 113-508 - 113th Congress (2013-2014)
July 02, 2014, As Reported by the Appropriations Committee)
Internal Revenue Service
The Committee remains troubled by the activities of the
Internal Revenue Service (IRS) including the inappropriate
singling out of certain tax-exempt groups based on their
political beliefs, wasteful spending on conferences and videos,
and providing bonuses to staff without evaluating their conduct
or tax compliance. In the fiscal year 2014 Omnibus
Appropriations Act, the Committee took steps to begin reforming
the IRS including requiring extensive reporting on IRS
spending, training and bonuses; prohibiting funds for the
production of videos that have not been reviewed or certified
to be appropriate; prohibiting funds for targeting groups for
regulatory scrutiny based on their ideological beliefs; and
prohibiting funds for targeting citizens for exercising their
First Amendment rights. However, the Committee believes that
more needs to be done to ensure that the IRS is appropriately
allocating its resources and is not using its authorities to
single out groups or individuals based on their political or
ideological beliefs. Given these concerns, the Committee cannot
support the Administration’s proposal to increase the IRS by
more than $1 billion over the fiscal year 2014 level. The
Committee recommends providing $10,950,000,000 for the IRS
which is $340,612,000 below current level and $1,526,527,000
below the request. This recommendation would fund the IRS below
their fiscal year 2008 level. In addition, the Committee
includes the following language to:
Prohibit funds for IRS employee bonuses and awards
that do not consider the conduct and tax compliance of such
Prohibit funds for targeting groups for regulatory
scrutiny based on their ideological beliefs;
Prohibit funds for targeting citizens for
exercising their First Amendment rights;
Prohibit funds for conferences that do not comply
with the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration’s
recommendations regarding conferences;
Prohibit funds for the production of videos that
have not been reviewed for cost, topic, tone, and purpose and
certified to be appropriate;
Require a report on the amount of official time
used by IRS employees;
Prohibit the White House from ordering the IRS to
determine the tax-exempt status of an organization;
Require extensive reporting on IRS spending; and
Provide TIGTA with a $1,625,000 increase to
enhance its audit and investigative oversight of the IRS.
The Committee also includes a funding prohibition to
prevent the Department of the Treasury from implementing their
proposed or revised regulation regarding the standards and
definitions used to determine the tax exempt status under
section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code. The Committee
believes that the Administration should wait until the
investigations into the inappropriate singling out of certain
tax-exempt groups based on their political beliefs are
concluded before proposing make any regulatory changes
regarding section 501(c)(4). The Committee believes that the
resources used to promulgate this proposed rule could be better
spent responding to taxpayers correspondence and phone calls.
The Committee continues to be concerned with the IRS’ role
in implementation of the Affordable Care Act and the individual
mandate in particular. At a time when the IRS has demonstrated
little ability to either self-police or self-correct, the IRS
has even more authority over Americans’ health coverage. The
Committee finds this expansion of IRS authority to be
unacceptable and, therefore, prohibits funding to implement the
individual mandate and prohibits transfers from the Department
of Health and Human Services to fund the IRS’ implementation of
the Affordable Care Act.
Trials, convictions, incarcerations...I say toss in a death penalty or two for destroying our Republic and using political machinery to eviscerate the opposition, a first in our nation’s history.
Let’s say that it was found the US military willingly made itself available to ONE party as a tool of political terror against the Democratic party, and that the likely outcome of that service was that a Republican had been elected at the last minute in a squeeker election:
Maybe the punishment would be NO General getting fired..?
Maybe the punishment would be NO General going to the brig..?
Maybe the punishment would be a budget cut of 3%...?
How many people here think that would play out?
Imagine further that in the course of the DOD investigation the new SecDef went up to Capitol Hill and said before the cameras that 7 hard-disks had crashed, and so further inquiry was IMPOSSIBLE and “these things happen”:
What would be the Democratic reaction..?
It’s been one wild party at the IRS since W started giving them big budget increases.
“Ultimately, they’ll cave.
No historical reason to believe otherwise.”
Not only that, but net funding to the IRS will ultimately increase. It’s a certainty.
Democrats are supposed to be the ones who love idiotic symbolic gestures. Not Republicans.
Nothing short of abolishment means squat.
The dumb-ass, party-line, "don't waste your vote", republican voters are too stupid to figure any of that out, however.
Cut the budget in half. Same with EPA and Justice. 3% what a joke. Ask Cantor what percentage his district is transfered away from Bratt?
Having worked around the gov’t, I’ll tell you the four ways to work around this issue. First, when folks leave, you leave the slot empty for a year...pocketing the money to make up for the loss. Second, you defer all costly training for one year....pocketing the money to make up for the loss. Third, you cut the bonus program to all employees GS13 and below to nothing while still running the program for the higher grades...pocketing the money to make up for the loss. Fourth, you cut the each division’s credit card usage for office supplies by a third....pocketing the money to make up for the loss.
There’s also a fifth method where you let go of the present contract folks for clean-up services in the buildings...opting for a newer crew who only comes in on Mondays and Thursdays.
I’ve seen all of these various tricks. They generally all work. The problem that you see is that for one year, it’s acceptable....when you start talking about this type of practice for two or three years...it gets to being demoralizing.
Not really revenge...congresscritters are COMPLICIT in what is happening to Americans.
THEY protect obama to protect THEMSELVES from accusations (well founded) of treason.
The Republicans are so damn stupid. Cowards!
A cut of 3%?
HA HA HA HA HA
It’s probably closer to a 5% or 6% cut when you account for the cost of living.
I’d certainly cut them by 5% a year, until they are gone and set up an adjacent agency that cannot be politicized by anybody.
It’s a good time to have the new agency re-write the tax code as well.
All smoke, no fire.
Ah yes. Republican leadership in action. A whopping 3% cut and a requirement that they stop doing things that are already illegal.
This punishment will be referred to as the “Pretty Please Act of 2014.”
Of course major cuts will mean less enforcement of proper tax payments by the most wealthy who are the ones most likely to be auditied. Thus we lower income taxpayers will be subsidizing the wealthy tax cheats. We can see how well this program has worked in Greece and Italy, among other places. Think again, please.
You set up a twin agency who’s job it is to re-write the tax code so that it’s fair and reasonable with no favours to anybody.
I believe I heard Steve Forbes make this suggestion last week on a news show.
Zero out their conference budget. Require them to do any intra-city travel by Greyhound bus. Office thermostats must be set to a no lower than 85 deg F in summer and no higher than 50 degrees in the winter.
Further, any IRS worker owing back taxes has 50% of pay devoted to repayment. Require IRS to obey every regulation and record keeping requirement they impose upon the taxpayer.
Revenge? Why not do something that’s actually meaningful like cutting taxes to a flat rate of 10%-15%? Give us all a break and nuke the idiot tax code at the same time.
Good to hear.
Yea right. Sure they will. Boehner will cry. McConnell will sigh. Harry will grab more Vaseline to use on the taxpayers. The popular acronym BOHICA peasants will apply when it comes down to crunch time within the GOP leadership. They may protect special interest like Chamber of Commerce but they’ll make it up on our side of it.
You can’t be serious? Do you suppose that increasing the IRS budget would be better for the lower income folks? I have news for you; the IRS is already harassing and shaking down middle class taxpayers. They also routinely go after any political opponent of Obamunism. They have stopped being a neutral revenue collection agency and have become a political enforcement tool for Obama. They need to be punished fittingly. A 3% cut is not what I consider punishment fitting their behavior. It will not even put a big dent in the lavish conventions or other blatant wasting of funds by that department. I think that cutting their budget and workforce in half would get their attention and help focus them on what they are supposed to be doing.
And in other news the IRS has announced increase fines and civil forfeiture to the tune of $341,000,000.
IRS needs to be DEFUNDED.
The Income Tax Amendment needs to be repealed and replaced with a national sales tax.
And.........just where is this money going to go?
Back to the taxpayers.....no.
Well silly, back to the government of course.....and eventually through the back door to the IRS.
That’s why while it sounds good, it’s not. Just more “smoke and mirrors” to entertain the proles. (Orwell)
Not nearly enough...keep cutting into the bone.