“Cuts such as those in the House budget resolution would actually increase the deficit by decreasing revenue,” IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman said to the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government.
He said the House proposal would cut $2 billion from the agency’s budget next fiscal year. “Cuts of this magnitude would be substantial and affect all of IRS operations,” from answering taxpayers’ questions on the phone to being able to conduct audits, he said. Shulman said that for every dollar invested in the IRS, the agency collects roughly $200 in revenue. [Dow Jones]
It wouldn’t be tax day (in form, if not necessarily in substance) if the Raisin Bran™ of celebrity tax delinquents, Robert Snell, didn’t have a scoop today.
To make it even better, today’s edition is none other than perpetually tax-plagued Nicolas Cage.
In a storage locker last month, cops found Nicolas Cage’s rare $1.5 million, Superman comic book, which was stolen from the actor a decade ago. About the same time, the Oscar winner found kryptonite in his mailbox.
The IRS just sent the financially strapped screen star a $624,934 bill for delinquent federal taxes, according to public records.
If this level of irony doesn’t cause you to believe in some kind of benevolent god, then I feel sorry for you.
In a speech before the 23rd Annual Institute on Current Issues in International Taxation, Washington, DC, Doug Shulman (link not yet available on the website) explained how rich dudes schlepping money to Switzerland (but not any more!) or Hong Kong is not even close to the same thing as “Google’s Irrationally Exuberant Tax Strategy.”
As I have said before, I draw a sharp distinction between rooting out individuals hiding their money in foreign tax havens and the IRS and Treasury creating ground rules for multinational corporations operating in a global environment.
It’s no secret that multinational corporations engage in sophisticated international tax planning. We recognize that much of this is perfectly legal and many businesses are trying to get it right. Of course, some are pushing the envelope too far and it’s here that we have issues. Our goal is to differentiate between the two; to be on top of our game in this analysis; and to ensure corporations are compliant with the tax law and stay compliant.