Internal Revenue Service:

Preliminary Observations on the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Request

GAO-13-599R: Published: May 3, 2013. Publicly Released: May 8, 2013.

Additional Materials:


James R. McTigue, Jr
(202) 512-9110


Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800

What GAO Found

In summary,

  • The fiscal year 2013 annualized continuing resolution rate shown in the fiscal year 2014 budget ($11.9 billion) is not the enacted funding level, and the actual amount is $689 million lower.

  • For fiscal year 2014, the President's Budget requests an increase for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) of 9 percent ($1,044 million) in discretionary funding over the fiscal year 2012 appropriation and an increase of 8 percent (6,732 full-time equivalents) in staffing over fiscal year 2012 actual levels. In addition, the funding request includes:

(1) Twelve new program initiatives related to enforcement activities and 6 new program initiatives related to taxpayer service, infrastructure, or other activities.

(2) New information on actual return on investment for enforcement activities, and expanded information on information technology investments, such as lifecycle costs, projected useful life of the current asset, and anticipated benefits.

  • The request includes 33 legislative proposals, including twelve related to our prior work.

  • As of March 2013, 39 of our products contained 10 matters for congressional consideration and 88 recommendations to IRS with a potential financial benefit that have not been addressed. Since March 2012, IRS has implemented 24 recommendations with a potential financial benefit.

Why GAO Did This Study

This letter transmits briefing slides based on GAO's work to date in response to Congressional requests for a preliminary review of the fiscal year 2014 budget request for the IRS. GAO's briefing objectives were to (1) describe the fiscal year 2013 budget for IRS and potential reductions resulting from sequestration; (2) describe IRS's budget data and trends from fiscal years 2010 through 2014; and the fiscal year 2014 new program initiatives, return on investment information, and major information technology investments; (3) list any analyses we have done related to legislative proposals highlighted in the congressional budget justification; and (4) identify our open matters for Congress and recommendations to IRS with a potential financial benefit.

For more information, contact James R. McTigue, Jr. at (202) 512-9110 or

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