Obama Presses for Budget [WSJ]
President Barack Obama emerged from a late-night meeting Wednesday with House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid saying the two parties had moved closer to a spending agreement to avoid a government shutdown Friday, but no deal had been struck. “What [the talks] did was narrow the issues and clarify the issues that are still outstanding,” Mr. Obama said. He was confident a deal could be reached to fund the government for the rest of the fiscal year, he said, but “it’s going to require a sufficient sense of urgency from all parties involved.”
IRS Commissioner Seeks Changes in Annual Tax Filing Process [Bloomberg]
U.S. Internal Revenue Service Commissioner Douglas Shulman outlined a “vision for a more real-time tax system” that would reduce the need for audits after returns are filed. Shulman said the IRS should receive all paperwork such as W-2 and 1099 forms before individuals file their returns. That would allow the agency to flag potential problems before it processes tax returns, instead of sending out refund checks and then starting audits.
Mayor Drops Accident Tax After Criticism [WSJ]
Mayor Michael Bloomberg has decided to drop his administration’s controversial plan to charge motorists involved in accidents for emergency-response services, a coup for City Council Speaker Christine Quinn. A Bloomberg administration official confirmed Wednesday afternoon that the mayor withdrew the proposal in the wake of opposition from Ms. Quinn. “The speaker made a strong case against it,” the official said.
Warren ‘Do-Right’ Buffett Gives Errant Kiss [Bloomberg]
[W]e can admire his talent for securities analysis, and his success at building an empire and making himself and lots of other investors rich. But let’s put to rest the exaltations about his plain talk and his eye for strong character. He’s a corporate chief executive officer, for goodness sake. These are the kinds of dodges we’ve come to expect from many CEOs. Buffett, whose record of reputational hits is long and varied, is no exception.
Price Waterhouse India Settles With Regulators But Satyam Saga Not Over [Forbes]
Settlements with Price Waterhouse (PW) India, the US-registered audit firm of PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), and Satyam, the Indian outsourcing company that blew up in a dramatically public and fraudulent fashion in early 2009, will probably provide significant ammunition to private lawsuits still pending in New York and court hearings in India.
Eliminating opportunities for fraud in companies [Fraud Files]
Fraud prevention policies and procedures sometimes have a tendency to focus on the smaller thefts. While those types of defalcations occur most often, they are not the most expensive. The financial statement frauds are the most devastating monetarily, and therefore must be fought aggressively.
Uncle Sam pummels boxing great Roy Jones Jr. [Tax Watchdog]
Boxers seem to only trail hip-hop artists in tax compliance futility.
Who Benefits From Those Tax Breaks? All of Us. [TaxVox]
“We have met the enemy and he is us,” said the cartoonist Walt Kelly. He was talking about preserving the environment, but he could have been describing our national addiction to tax credits, deductions, and exclusions.