Tags: john koskinen | warns | irs | collapse

Retired Chief Koskinen: 'Beware the Collapse of the IRS'

Image: Retired Chief Koskinen: 'Beware the Collapse of the IRS'
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By    |   Thursday, 16 November 2017 01:30 PM

Retired IRS chief John Koskinen warned that the embattled and underfunded agency is on the brink of collapse and said he has never seen President Donald Trump's tax returns.

In a lengthy interview with Politico Magazine, Koskinen said all of Trump's tax returns — along with every other president's — are under lock and key and will soon be stored in a safe.

"It's in a locked cabinet in a locked room that nobody's in. … We're in the process of turning that cabinet into a safe," Koskinen told Politico. "We keep all the returns from every president in there.

"I had no authority to look at anybody's returns. Nobody can, unless you're authorized for the process of examination. I couldn't look at my own return," said Koskinen, whose term leading the IRS ended Nov. 12.

Further, Koskinen warned that it's an agency on the brink of collapse.

"We're outgunned in terms of tracking down every lead. Ultimately, we're limited by resources," Koskinen said. "My message is: Beware the collapse of the IRS. We're at the edge."

The results of underfunding, according to Koskinen:

  • "60 percent of our hardware and 22 percent of our software is out of date. We're still running applications from when JFK was president.
  • "We're down 7,000 revenue agents, revenue officers and criminal investigators.
  • "Our audit rate has been cut in half; it's 0.6 percent, and next year it will be 0.5 percent. It was 1.2 percent in 2010."

"We're leaving $6 billion on the table every year from audits we know we should do that we don't have the resources to do. Even our most aggressive critics agree that if you give us money, we'll get you more money back," Koskinen said, adding that "every 1 percent drop in compliance costs $33 billion a year."

"When I was dealing with distressed businesses, I never met anyone who thought it was a good idea to starve their revenue side. I keep trying to warn people that we just can't keep losing employees and absorbing budget cuts. We'll fail," Koskinen said.

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Retired IRS chief John Koskinen warned that the embattled and underfunded agency is on the brink of collapse and said he has never seen President Donald Trump's tax returns.
john koskinen, warns, irs, collapse
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2017-30-16
Thursday, 16 November 2017 01:30 PM
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