Koskinen’s Farewell: Progress Made, but Resources Still Needed

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen used the majority of his farewell news conference to make a final plea: If the agency doesn’t get adequate funding soon, and a problem occurs for that reason, Congress is to blame.

“I don’t want anybody to say they weren’t warned,” Koskinen said on November 6. “Our employees continue to do everything they can for our taxpayers, even with constrained resources,” Koskinen said, adding that most of the agency’s systems have been dealing with antiquated hardware and software, most of which are behind industry standard.

The risk of a “technological event” increases as the programs get older, which might lead to long interruptions in processing returns and refunds.

“I have not been shy. I have been concerned with funding since I started. We didn’t have enough people anywhere,” Koskinen said. “If the agency fails and people are looking for fault, they can look to Congress if there isn’t adequate funding. It is a question of fault. It is a question of responsibility. I am blaming Congress.”

Koskinen’s term officially ended November 12.

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