Tax Administration:

Information on Tax Counseling for the Elderly Program

GGD-93-90BR: Published: Apr 8, 1993. Publicly Released: Apr 8, 1993.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) grants to nonprofit organizations that administer the Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) program, focusing on: (1) the amount of funding nonprofit organizations received in fiscal year 1992; (2) how the five largest grantees used the funds; and (3) the organizations' accountability to IRS.

GAO found that: (1) in 1992, IRS granted 58 organizations $3 million for recruiting volunteers to provide free tax assistance to the elderly; (2) the grantees must use 70 percent of grants funds to reimburse volunteers' out-of-pocket expenses and the remaining funds for administrative expenses; (3) according to IRS records, the five largest grantees were within IRS expenditure guidelines; (4) grantee organizations were accountable to IRS through on-site visits, reviews of quarterly expense statements, and independent audits of grantees which receive more than $25,000 in federal funds; (5) the two largest grantee organizations had detailed accounting and reporting procedures, including independent audits; and (6) the TCE program has an effective detailed program activity and fund disbursement reporting system which provides reasonable assurances that grantees are using grant funds for tax preparation assistance to the elderly.

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