IRS Charts a Path Forward

The IRS has issued Deputy Commissioner Danny Werfel’s report entitled Charting the Path Forward at the IRS: An Initial Assessment and Plan of Action.  The report outlines new actions and next steps planned to fix problems uncovered with the IRS’ review of applications for tax exempt status and improve wider processes and operations in place at the IRS.

From the introduction to the report:

The IRS used inappropriate criteria that identified for review Tea Party and other organizations applying for tax-exempt status based upon their names or policy positions instead of indications of potential political campaign intervention. Ineffective management: 1) allowed inappropriate criteria to be developed and stay in place for more than 18 months, 2) resulted in substantial delays in processing certain applications, and 3) allowed unnecessary information requests to be issued.

These findings by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) were the result of both organizational and individual failures within the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). In response, the President and the Secretary of the Treasury installed new leadership at the IRS in late May 2013, and directed that a thorough review of the matters identified in the TIGTA report occur, individuals responsible for mismanagement or wrongdoing be held to account, comprehensive corrective actions be taken to address the problems with IRS review of tax exempt applications, and a forward-looking assessment take place to identify ways to improve IRS operations broadly. This Report is the response to the request by the Secretary of the Treasury for a “30 day” update on our progress in carrying out the above directives.

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Nikki Powell

Nikki Powell is PEAK Grantmaking's effective practices director. You can find her on Twitter @nikkiwpowell.

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