Treasury Secretary Jane Yellen told the IRS not to increase middle-class audits.
The Inflation Reduction Act that the U.S. Senate passed on Sunday—and that the U.S. House of Representatives will consider tomorrow—includes funding for an increase of 87,000 new hires at the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Some Republican members of Congress have raised concerns that additional funds for the IRS budget could result in more audits on middle-class families.
To quell concerns, Secretary Yellen wrote a letter to the IRS asking that the new funds not be used for auditing middle-class families.
“Specifically, I direct that any additional resources—including any new personnel or auditors that are hired—shall not be used to increase the share of small business or households below the $400,000 threshold that are audited relative to historical levels,” she wrote. “This means that, contrary to the misinformation from opponents of this legislation, small business or households earning $400,000 per year or less will not see an increase in the chances that they are audited.”
The Inflation Reduction Act included $80 billion to the IRS budget over the next 10 years.
Yellen’s statement is meant to maintain support for the bill, which still needs to be passed by the House and signed by President Joe Biden. If opponents of the provision generate significant concerns, it could either kill the bill or force the removal of this particular aspect of it.