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Accounting News Roundup: The Inspector General’s IRS Report; Olympus Is Back in Black; Tax-exempt Org Returns Are Due | 05.15.13

Inspector General’s IRS Report: Highlights, Full Text [WSJ, Report]
The Internal Revenue Service used “inappropriate criteria” to review applications from tea party and other groups seeking to qualify as tax-exempt “social welfare” organizations, according to a government watchdog report that offers the clearest picture to date on a practice that began at least as early as 2010. The report found that while some work began right away on applications that presented potential “significant campaign interventions,” no work was completed on the majority of these applications for 13 months, while agents awaited guidance from the tax-exempt office headquarters.

Treasury Report: The IRS Owes Apologies to More Than Just Tea Party Groups [Atlantic]
The concerns are threefold. The first is that IRS employees established an unfair process for flagging applications for additional review. The second is that the review process itself took an exceptionally long time. The third is that requests for additional information from applicants was handled improperly.

Carney Says White House Not Involved in IRS Targeting Groups [Bloomberg]
“I am certainly not aware and am confident that no one here was involved in this,” Carney said.

Those exempt organization returns are due today. [Tax Update]
Joe Kristan reminds us.

Olympus books profit as it shrugs off accounting scandal [AFP]
Japan's Olympus said Wednesday it swung to an annual net profit as it turns the page on a huge accounting scandal, adding that it expects profits to more than triple in the current fiscal year. The camera and medical equipment maker said net profit for the year to March was 8.02 billion yen ($78 million), reversing a year-earlier loss of 48.99 billion yen. Sales were worth 743.85 billion yen, down 12.3 percent. The firm's return to profitability came as it rebuilds from a scandal for which several former executives are facing criminal charges.

Would You Pay $2 Million for This Painting of Naked Bea Arthur? [NSFW] [Gawker]
This reminds me of how much liked the movie Airheads.

House Holds Hearing Today on Small Business and Pass-Through Entity Tax Reform [TaxProf]
Maybe I spoke to soon.

Same-sex marriage opponents to file suit against IRS [The Hill]
The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) announced Tuesday that it planned to sue the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), accusing it of leaking confidential tax documents to a political rival. The group, which opposes same-sex marriage, said it was yet another victim of the IRS's targeting of conservative groups, accusing the agency of leaking confidential tax documents to the same-sex marriage advocacy group the Human Rights Campaign (HRC).

Rich Manhattan moms hire handicapped tour guides so kids can cut lines at Disney World [NYP]
The “black-market Disney guides” run $130 an hour, or $1,040 for an eight-hour day. “My daughter waited one minute to get on ‘It’s a Small World’ — the other kids had to wait 2 1/2 hours,” crowed one mom, who hired a disabled guide through Dream Tours Florida. “You can’t go to Disney without a tour concierge,’’ she sniffed. “This is how the 1 percent does Disney.” The woman said she hired a Dream Tours guide to escort her, her husband and their 1-year-old son and 5-year-old daughter through the park in a motorized scooter with a “handicapped” sign on it. The group was sent straight to an auxiliary entrance at the front of each attraction.


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