IRS Commits to Full Operation Amidst Looming Government Shutdown Uncertainty.In a recent development, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has assured its employees and stakeholders that it intends to maintain its full operational status in the event of a government shutdown initiated by Congress.
IRS Commits to Full Operation Amidst Looming Government Shutdown Uncertainty
This commitment comes as a response to a request from the National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU) and reflects the IRS’s determination to ensure business continuity.
IRS Pledge Amidst Congressional Uncertainty
In response to concerns about a potential government shutdown this fall, the IRS, upon NTEU’s request, has officially affirmed its dedication to remaining fully operational. In a memo disclosed by Federal News Network, the NTEU conveyed the IRS’s commitment to its members, assuring them that the agency will utilize funds allocated under the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) to sustain its operations and timely pay its employees.
Congress Deadline Looms
Congress faces a critical deadline of September 30 to avert a government shutdown. This can be achieved either through the passage of a comprehensive spending bill for fiscal year 2024 or the approval of a continuing resolution to temporarily fund the government at current spending levels.
Ensuring Timely Payroll Processing
The IRS has also taken measures to ensure that the National Finance Center remains adequately staffed to process payroll on schedule for IRS employees, even in the event of a potential government shutdown. This proactive approach aligns with the agency’s commitment to minimize disruptions.
Continuity from Past Contingency Plans
The NTEU pointed out that the IRS’s current contingency plans closely resemble those established in September of the previous year. These plans were formulated after Congress enacted the Inflation Reduction Act in August 2022. The union emphasized that while a new, updated contingency plan is expected to be shared once approved by the Treasury Department, the underlying rationale will remain consistent.
Extended Availability of Funding
The IRS has identified that the IRA has provided supplemental appropriations accessible to the agency through September 30, 2031, for all IRS appropriations accounts. This extended funding availability plays a crucial role in enabling the IRS to maintain its operations.
Advocacy for Adequate Funding
Various federal employee groups, including NTEU and the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association (NARFE), are urging lawmakers to provide adequate funding for federal agencies and avoid a government shutdown. They emphasize the significant financial burden a shutdown places on federal employees.
Congressional Actions and Ongoing Debate
While House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and House Republican leaders are reportedly planning for a continuing resolution to fund the government at current levels until November 1, lawmakers are still engaged in discussions to reach a consensus on a comprehensive spending plan for fiscal year 2024. The Senate and House have differing approaches, with House Republicans seeking deeper federal spending cuts than previously agreed upon.
Call to Avert Shutdown
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has urged House Republicans to prioritize avoiding a government shutdown, emphasizing the adverse effects such an event could have on the nation’s progress in lowering costs, creating jobs, and revitalizing the economy post-pandemic. The message is clear a government shutdown is an outcome that policymakers should work diligently to prevent.
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