Obama administration opposes IRS bills

Obama administration opposes IRS bills
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The Obama administration opposes four bills concerning the Internal Revenue Service that the House plans to vote on this week, the Office of Management and Budget said Monday. 

The administration explicitly issued a veto threat for one the bills, which would repeal the IRS's ability to spend the user fees it collects without authorization from Congress. The OMB said the bill would further reduce the agency's resources at a time when it is already severely underfunded.

"The IRS needs more resources, not fewer, to deter tax cheats, serve honest taxpayers, and protect taxpayer data," the OMB said.

The administration also came out against three other bills. One would ban the IRS from hiring new employees until the Treasury Department certifies that no employee has a serious tax debt or issues a report explaining why it cannot make such a certification. Another would prohibit the IRS from giving employees bonuses until it implements a comprehensive customer service strategy, and a third would bar the IRS from rehiring former employees who were fired for misconduct.

"These bills would impose unnecessary constraints on the Internal Revenue Service's ... operations without improving the agency's ability to administer the tax code and serve taxpayers," the OMB said.

The House is scheduled to vote on the four bills as early as Wednesday.

The chamber is also scheduled to vote on two other IRS-related measures on Tuesday. One is a bill that prohibits the IRS from using funds to target taxpayers for exercising their First Amendment rights. The other is a resolution that expresses the House's opinion that the IRS should provide free copies of the tax-filing instructions book to taxpayers.

House Republicans have said the bills would increase the IRS's accountabilty to taxpayers.