IRS Can't Find $67 Million in Obamacare Funds
by Terri Eyden on
By Ken Berry
As if there wasn't enough controversy already swirling around the Affordable Care Act (ACA) – informally known as "Obamacare" – now the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) reports that the IRS can't account for $67 million stashed in a slush fund intended to help enforce the law (TIGTA Ref. No. 2013-13-115).
In a provision buried deep within the massive legislation, the IRS was authorized to set up the Health Insurance Reform Implementation Fund (HIRIF). Approximately $1 billion in taxpayer revenue has been funneled into the HIRIF for use by the IRS. The IRS needed the funds to roll out enforcement mechanisms for the fifty or so tax code provisions affected by Obamacare.
TIGTA's September 18 report indicates that the IRS hasn't accounted for or attempted to quantify about $67 million of the HIRIF funds used for indirect ACA costs incurred during fiscal year (FY) 2010 through FY 2012. Furthermore, the TIGTA report zeroed in on several other abuses involving taxpayer funds, including the following:
- TIGTA identified thirty-eight IRS employees in two business units whose travel was charged to the HIRIF in FY 2012, but no portion of their salary and related benefits was charged to the HIRIF. Thus, there was no correlation between the travel reimbursements and the purposes of the fund.
- TIGTA estimates that spending in the slush fund cost taxpayers the equivalent of 1,272 new full-time IRS agents.
- The IRS requested an additional $360 million for FY 2013 as well as 859 more full-time IRS Obamacare enforcement agents. But these requests have not been met.
The IRS informed TIGTA that it would comply with the recommendations made in the report. Unfortunately, however, the HIRIF funds have already been spent. In other words, there's no real recourse at this time.
- Health Insurance Subsidies: Open for Business
- Treasury Issues Proposed Rules for Information Reporting by Employers and Insurers under Affordable Care Act
- IRS Issues Guidance on Health Insurance Credit
You may like these other stories...
Lois Lerner isn’t a Superwoman, but she’s showing at least as much resilience as Lois Lane.A new report released on March 11 by the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, one of several government...
Each tax-filing season poses different challenges for small business owners – from understanding the new tax laws and regulations to preparing new forms and disclosures.But according to Kevin Anderson and Doug Bekker,...
In Denver, state legislators are probably thinking, "Why didn't we think of this earlier?" The state of Colorado's retail marijuana sales (separate from medical marijuana sales) in January alone generated...
Upcoming CPE Webinars
BAR is an acronym for: Boundaries, Authority and Role. This simple tool will provide participants with a solid understanding of leadership essentials to improve their performance.
This material is designed to provide a start-to-finish overview of how to plan and complete high-quality small audits efficiently.
In this session Excel expert David H. Ringstrom, CPA shares numerous techniques that you can use to work with charts more efficiently.
Key Accounting and Reporting Issues for Nonprofits No. 1: Overview and Statement of Financial Position
This material focuses on non-profit organizations organization, accounting and reporting.