IRS Commissioner reviews priorities/accomplishments; will step down in September
IRS Commissioner Shulman recently announced he plans to leave his position when his five-year term ends in September 2012. Speaking before the National Press Club this past April, Shulman also took the opportunity to review IRS progress during his tenure within numerous strategic areas, including computer technology modernization, tax return preparer standards, and offshore tax evasion. He urged the IRS to continue building on those improvements.
Commissioner Shulman reported that under his watch the IRS had succeeded in updating its weekly processing cycle for core accounts to a daily processing cycle. Information processed includes a taxpayer’s current account balance, outstanding amounts, and recent payments. The IRS is also developing its Customer Account Data Engine 2 (CADE-2) system, which is intended to speed tax return and refund processing.
Shulman also touted return preparer oversight as a recent accomplishment in which the IRS has implemented standards to ensure competency among paid tax return preparers. These regulations require paid return preparers—other than enrolled agents, attorneys, and CPAs—to register with the IRS, pass a competency exam, and complete 15 hours of continuing education from IRS-approved providers every year.
On the subject of international taxation, the Commissioner emphasized the successful Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Initiatives (OVDI). The programs have attracted more than 30,000 taxpayers to date and have collected more than $4.4 billion. Shulman also pointed to coordinated actions among taxing authorities on a global basis as the next step being taken to limit offshore tax evasion.