Tax Administration:

IRS' Progress on Integrity and Ethics Issues

T-GGD-92-62: Published: Jul 22, 1992. Publicly Released: Jul 22, 1992.

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GAO discussed the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) progress in responding to ethics and integrity issues. GAO noted that IRS: (1) published hotline numbers and informed employees of whistleblower protection rights, set up a network of ethics coordinators, and provided ethics awareness training to many IRS executives and managers; (2) has developed an Ethics Awareness Briefing and an Ethics Resources Guide and has used a video to emphasize employee responsibilities for reporting misconduct; (3) field managers have developed plans, assigned ethics coordinators, and used memoranda, newsletters, articles, and discussions to make employees aware of their ethical responsibilities; (4) implemented two recommendations to consolidate the adjudication process and publicize summary information about misconduct cases and sanctions; and (5) is unable to fully use its Automated Labor Employee Relations Tracking System to help manage employee conduct cases and provide comparative information on similar cases and actions taken. GAO also noted that: (1) interviews with 40 IRS employees indicated awareness of and positive attitudes toward IRS ethics activities; and (2) IRS agreed with GAO recommendations to strengthen the management and oversight of undercover activities through improved monitoring and auditing operations, evaluation of completed operations, involvement of the IRS Controller in planning financial recordkeeping, and better use of the intelligence gathered during undercover operations.

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