The U.S. Internal Revenue Service is expected to use $881 million in taxpayer money to implement the first four years of Obamacare, including more than $500 million that the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) diverted to the agency, according to a federal audit.
The new Government Accountability Office audit calls Obamacare a “significant effort for IRS,” CNS
reported on Friday.
The IRS “implementation costs” are expected to total $881 million from fiscal years 2010 to 2013, it says.
The $881 million cost only covers work through 2013. However, the IRS has implementation work planned through 2018, so the total cost could be higher.
Of the $881 million, $521 million will come from the HHS Health Insurance Reform Implementation Fund (HIRIF), which has been criticized as a “slush fund” by Republicans. The remaining $360 million is to come from IRS’s 2013 budget request, expected to be awarded through the congressional budget process.
HIRIF received $1 billion from Congress to implement the health care overhaul. The GAO has said that transferring $521 million from that to the IRS is legal.
As of the end of fiscal year 2011, IRS had received $187 million of the HHS money, according to the audit. The remaining $332 million is expected to come by the end of this fiscal year. As of April 27, however, about $135 million of that amount had been awarded.
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