I.R.S. Budget Slashed Again. Disaster Gleefully Anticipated.

I’ll spare you the avalanche of bad news in the spending bill recently passed by the U.S. Congress and just skip right to the good news. The IRS budget was cut again, to $10.9 billion, the lowest annual budget since in nominal dollars, and I think you have to go back about 15 years to find a lower budget in inflation-adjusted dollars.

The agency has been complaining that with the many new responsibilities Congress has saddled them with, with the increase in population, and with the emergence of industrial-scale identity theft and other criminal schemes that fleece the taxpayers before the IRS can get to them (or that fleece the IRS more directly), and with the aging of the IRS workforce and computer infrastructure, these budget cuts will lead to disaster. We’ve cut all the fat, the agency complains, and now we’re left with bone & muscle.

Well, I for one am at the edge of my seat, hoping they’re not just whistlin’ Dixie.