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Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration

Press Release

August 20, 2009
Contact: Li-Yun Chien
(202) 622-6500

TIGTA Releases Audit Report on the IRS's Research Efforts

The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) today publicly released its audit of the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS's) research programs.

The audit reviewed whether the structure and management of the IRS's research programs could be improved. IRS management relies on research programs to improve the IRS's performance on strategic goals and objectives. The IRS spent more than $93.2 million on research in Fiscal Year 2008.

TIGTA found that the IRS does not have a standardized process to monitor the progress of research projects, validate results and measure the impact of research efforts. "The IRS does not have an effective process to monitor, validate and measure its research efforts. As a result, IRS management cannot fully assess the impact that its research programs have on improving taxpayer service, enhancing the enforcement of tax laws and assisting in the modernization of the IRS," commented J. Russell George, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration.

TIGTA recommended that the IRS develop and implement effective business measures to better assess whether research efforts achieve program objectives and to show the impact on tax administration. The IRS said it would consider developing appropriate business measures and explore whether standardized measures are possible. TIGTA remains concerned that the IRS has not committed to establishing effective business measures.

To view the report, including the scope, methodology and full IRS response, go to: https://www.treasury.gov/tigta/auditreports/2009reports/200910095fr.pdf.


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