Hill staffers owe more than $9M in taxes

Staffers on Capitol Hill owed $9.3 million in overdue taxes at the end of 2009, a small portion of the $1 billion total owed by all federal workers.

IRS documents show that 638 employees, about 4 percent, of 18,000 staffers owed money, slightly higher than the 3 percent delinquency rate among all tax filers last year, according to an independent analysis of IRS data by The Washington Post released Thursday. 

Senate staffers on average owe $12,787, while those delinquent who are working for the House owe $15,498.

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The IRS data doesn't identify those late taxpayers by name, party affiliation or job title and doesn't show whether any are members of Congress. The Post analysis breaks down the $1 billion in delinquencies by number and amount as well. 

From 2004 through 2006, the last three years Republicans held the majority, staffers owed around $9 million. In 2007, when Democrats took over, that amount dropped to $6.8 million. Since then, it has increased by 37 percent, possibly caused by the high turnover rate of Capitol Hill staffers.

Overall, taxpayers owed the federal government $103.2 billion at the end of last year.