Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Deb Fischer (R-Neb.) has introduced a pair of bills to protect taxpayers from overreach by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which systematically targeted and delayed the applications of conservative organizations applying for tax-exempt status beginning in 2010.
“As the federal agency tasked with administering the U.S. tax code, the IRS has extraordinary influence on the lives of Americans from all walks of life and all points of view,” Senator Fischer said. “Nebraskans and all Americans have the absolute right to expect the IRS to be free from political influence, with taxpayers treated fairly and enforcement carried out in an unbiased manner. These two bills protect the constitutional rights of taxpayers, increase transparency, and promote accountability of the IRS, which has a long way to go to regain credibility and restore public trust.”
The Stop IRS Overreach Act (S.2043) would prohibit the IRS from asking any taxpayer questions regarding their religious, political, or social beliefs. It also expresses the sense of Congress that:
- Any exceptions later enacted by Congress should clearly identify the content of questions, the class of taxpayers to be questioned, and circumstances under which questions will be asked; and
- If the IRS Commissioner determines that asking such questions would aid in the administration of tax laws, then he/she should submit a report to Congress detailing the content of the questions, the class of taxpayers to be questioned, and circumstances under which questions will be asked.
Text of the legislation is available online by clicking HERE.
The Taxpayer Accountability Act (S.2044) would require the IRS to:
- Provide a written response to any taxpayer correspondence within 30 days;
- Notify a taxpayer within 30 days after disclosing their taxpayer information to another government entity; and
- Conclude any audit of an individual taxpayer (and the related taxes of such audit) within one year of initiating the audit.