IRS ‘Taxpayer Experience Officer’ profits from taxpayers

By Around the Web

(Photo by Joe Kovacs)
(Photo by Joe Kovacs)

[Editor’s note: This story originally was published by Real Clear Wire.]

By Adam Andrzejewski
Real Clear Wire

Topline: The IRS has appointed a new “taxpayer experience officer,” whose salary is paid by – who else – taxpayers themselves.

The agency hasn’t publicly announced Fumi Tamaki’s salary, but her predecessor earned nearly $200,000 in 2022, according to payroll records obtained by OpenTheBooks through an open records request.

Key facts: Current Deputy Chief Taxpayer Experience Officer Courtney Kay-Decker earned $187,000 in 2022. Adding in estimated benefits of 25%, that means the soon-to-be-two-person office costs taxpayers over $483,000 each year.

Takami and Kay-Decker will “pave the way for continuous improvements for … the tax community,” according to IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel – whose position earned $168,000 in the latest available payroll data.

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The IRS paid out six-figure salaries to 11,846 people in 2022, with some employees earning up to $261,400.

That resulted in a total payroll of $4.9 billion.

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Background: The Taxpayer Experience Office is tasked with helping manage the $80 billion in supplemental funding the IRS received from the Inflation Reduction Act in 2022. Republicans fought back and reduced that funding to $58.4 billion this March.

The office also works closely with National Taxpayer Advocate Erin Collins, who the IRS has dubbed the “Voice of the Taxpayer.” She makes over $203,000.

Collins and the taxpayer experience office are good at identifying issues at the IRS, such as in a recent report to Congress announcing that it takes an average of 22 months for the agency to refund victims of identity theft. It remains to be seen whether they can fix those issues.

Summary: The best way to improve the taxpayer experience would be to slash the IRS’ bloated payroll and save Americans some money.

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This article was originally published by RealClearInvestigations and made available via RealClearWire.


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