Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration
June 11, 2009
Contact: Robert Sperling
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has suspended future development of its Account Management Services (AMS) Project and needs to decide on the future of the $41 million program, according to a report publicly released today by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA).
The report found that the IRS stopped all future development plans on the project after concluding that modernizing and reusing the Integrated Data Retrieval System (IDRS) eliminated the need to complete all of the originally planned capabilities of the AMS.
The IRS successfully completed deployment of AMS Release 1.3 in February 2009, and Release 2.1 is on track for scheduled delivery in August. These releases merged existing stand-alone Desktop Integration and Correspondence Imaging System applications, allowing IRS employees to view and access taxpayer account information and scanned copies of correspondence and related documents. However, subsequent development activities intended to eventually replace the IDRS have been suspended.
The report also concluded that the IRS did not adequately control spending on the AMS. Program managers used money intended for later versions of the project to develop and implement Release 1.3. When one release was low on funding, the IRS procured assets and services for that release by charging the expense to other releases. This resulted in a shortfall of available funding to complete Release 1.3 application development.
"The IRS needs to make several strategic decisions that will affect the future of the AMS systems," commented J. Russell George, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration. "The longer these decisions are delayed, the greater the risk of costly rework."
The IRS is currently evaluating the Modernization Program and the portfolio of all projects, including the AMS. The IRS agreed with our recommendations and is redirecting remaining AMS funds properly to complete the current releases. Additionally, the IRS is taking actions to improve its management of contracts on a project release basis and plans to reinforce existing governance procedures.
To read the full report, including the scope, methodology and the IRS's complete response to a draft of the audit: http://www.treas.gov/tigta/auditreports/2009reports/200920071fr.pdf
Created by Congress in 1998, TIGTA's mission is to provide independent oversight of the IRS and protect its ability to timely and efficiently collect Federal taxes.
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