US Senator Mike Crapo of Idaho

A proposal is under consideration by the administration and congressional allies, as part of their reckless tax and spending plan, to create a reporting system in which financial intermediaries report to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) of the “entries and exits” of customers. Under this sweep, local banks, credit unions and payment providers will essentially be transformed into agents of the IRS, monitoring and reporting the inflow and outflow of deposits and withdrawals made to private accounts.

This proposal raises a number of serious concerns, the most important of which is confidentiality. It also raises concerns about data security, as the IRS has a history of leaks, hacks and other breaches of taxpayer privacy. Low- and middle-income earners would certainly be drawn into this net.

The proposal is not popular among Americans. A poll by Morning Consult shows that two-thirds of voters oppose the IRS’s reporting plan.

MOST AMERICANS WILL BE SWEEPED.

After a major backlash from concerned Americans, the administration released an “information sheet” on an updated proposal yet to be revealed. Two of the changes included:

  • Raise the entry / exit declaration threshold to $ 10,000 instead of $ 600; and
  • New exclusions for employees and beneficiaries of the federal program.

These updates do nothing to address the breach of privacy, due process, data security concerns, or the breadth of the net.

Raising the threshold from $ 600 to $ 10,000 would still drag most Americans. According to the most recent data available from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average US taxpayer spends about $ 63,000 per year. What are they spending it on? The averages: housing, $ 20,679; transportation, $ 10,742; personal insurance and pensions, $ 7,165; health care, $ 5,193; groceries, $ 4,643; other meals, $ 3,526; entertainment, $ 3,090; cash contributions, $ 1,995; clothing and services, $ 1,883; education, $ 1,443; personal care, $ 786. For a grand total of the average American who spends $ 63,036 in their accounts in a year. Does increasing the total to $ 10,000 really prevent the IRS from accessing so many accounts? No, the average taxpayer’s outflows are more than six times greater than this threshold.

Each proposed exemption creates more confusion and complexity for taxpayers, as well as complexity and costs for private reporting institutions. What about self-employed workers, self-employed hairdressers, convenience store owners and farmers? Not all self-employed people are “millionaires” or “billionaires”.

CONSIDER YOUR ANNUAL EXPENSES.

Consider the following categories, and if you would potentially be dragged into this scheme to achieve $ 10,000 in annual “inflows and outflows” in one of your financial accounts.

Costs Monthly Annually
Compensation / income
Food
Clothes
Shelter (mortgage, rent, taxes, etc.)
Household (utilities, cell phone, cable, maintenance, etc.)
Transport (public, parking, gas, etc.)
Health (insurance, drugs, doctor’s visits, etc.)
Student loans (interest / principal payments, etc.)
Personal (gifts, charity, entertainment, hobbies, etc.)
Vacation
Total

Think about other scenarios. What happens if you receive child support or alimony? Transfer money between checks and savings? What about transfers between immediate family members, such as a parent helping to support their college-age student with money for rent, food, or tuition? If the IRS intends to exempt some or all of these scenarios, the proposal is unnecessary. However, if it doesn’t, it will certainly drag virtually all Americans into this net, triggering audits and headaches for ordinary Americans.

It’s important to make sure tax evaders pay the taxes they owe, but the privacy of law-abiding Americans must not be trampled on to achieve this goal. The IRS does not need to have access to every American’s accounts. He cannot be trusted with this information, and I will continue to fight for this expanded authority. This lazy and destructive proposal must be abandoned for good.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE PROBLEM:

LEARN MORE ABOUT SENATOR CRAPO’S EFFORTS:

  • Sent letter to US Secretary of the Treasury Yellen requesting details of the proposal.
  • Led a roundtable Oct. 12 with affected Idaho residents to discuss the reporting program.
  • Speech on the floor of the US Senate calling on Americans to loudly reject the IRS ‘intrusive reporting regime.
  • Led a press conference with other Republican members of the Senate Banking and Finance Committees to blow up the IRS ‘banking reporting net.
  • Introduced legislation with Sen. Tim Scott to block Democrats’ IRS financial report proposal.
  • Introduced Tax Gap Reform and IRS Enforcement Law to add significant safeguards around IRS funding to protect the rights and privacy of taxpayers.

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