US IRS – where 1% makes a BIG difference

US IRS – where 1% makes a BIG difference


John Oliver normally fights for the under-dog. But today he gives us a fascinating – and funny – insight into the lives of those who work at the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The article has some fascinating stats:

  • you could wait all day outside an IRS office to talk to someone IRS, because there are so few staff working
  • 4 in 10 get through on the phone, with 5 million having “courtesy disconnects” i.e. you get cut off
  • 579 tax changes were made last year
  • there was a 20% reduction in operating budget last year and 13,000 people left
  • only 1% of workforce are under the age of 25
  • IT technology is outdated – 50% of tax data is on magnetic tape system
  • $1 spent on tax enforcement collects $6

But the most staggering number is the IRS collects $3 trillion annually.

If there is a 1% drop in compliance that is $30 BILLION.