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Dec 23, 2013

New York regulates tax preparers as U.S. IRS effort drifts

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – New York this month became the fourth U.S. state to regulate unlicensed tax return preparers, at a time when consumer advocates are pushing for more state oversight as a federal crackdown stalled.

Nearly 80 million Americans pay someone to prepare their tax returns. While most of this work goes smoothly, some does not.

Dec 20, 2013

U.S. Senate approves Obama nominee for IRS chief

WASHINGTON, Dec 20 (Reuters) – The U.S. Senate on Friday
voted to confirm John Koskinen as the new head of the Internal
Revenue Service, giving the beleaguered tax agency its fourth
chief in little more than a year.

A 74-year-old lawyer with little tax experience, Koskinen
was nominated in August by President Barack Obama. He was
approved by the Democrat-controlled Senate in a 59-36 vote.

Dec 17, 2013

More progress made on cross-border corporate tax pacts: U.S. IRS

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Internal Revenue Service is making progress this year on minimizing quarrels with multinational corporations over “transfer pricing,” or taxing how companies value and move capital and assets across borders, a senior IRS official told Reuters.

The agency has signed 115 advance pricing agreements (APAs) with multinationals so far in 2013. That could climb to 130 by year-end, nearly matching 2012′s record-setting total of 140, Richard McAlonan, APA program director, said on Monday.

Dec 13, 2013

U.S. Senate panel votes to confirm Obama’s pick for IRS chief

WASHINGTON, Dec 13 (Reuters) – A U.S. Senate panel voted on
Friday to confirm President Barack Obama’s choice to be the next
Internal Revenue Service commissioner, sending his nomination to
the full Senate.

In a voice vote, the Senate Finance Committee, as expected,
confirmed John Koskinen to be the next chief tax collector. The
earliest the full Senate could vote would be on Monday.

Dec 13, 2013

Proposed IRS campaign rules may create strange tax-exempt allies

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration’s push to limit campaign activity by partisan tax-exempt groups has set up an unusual situation that could unite political enemies in battle against the Internal Revenue Service.

Nonpartisan groups are complaining that voter education and mobilization efforts could be endangered by the IRS tax proposals unveiled last month.

Dec 12, 2013

U.S. Treasury official urges Senate action on tax treaties

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. Treasury official on Thursday called on the Senate to ratify five tax treaties the United States has signed with other nations but that have languished without a vote since 2011.

Though tax treaties previously have routinely won Senate approval, they have recently fallen victim to partisan gridlock despite a corporate lobbying effort to get them ratified.

Dec 11, 2013

Smooth sailing at Senate panel for Obama’s nominee to head IRS

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The top Republican on the U.S. Senate’s tax-writing panel on Wednesday endorsed President Barack Obama’s nominee to be the next chief of the Internal Revenue Service, smoothing the path for what will likely be a prompt Senate confirmation.

John Koskinen, in a hearing before the Senate Finance Committee, promised to address concerns raised by Republicans about new IRS rules for tax-exempt organizations and the agency’s implementation of the 2010 Affordable Care Act.

Dec 10, 2013

Hearing cut short on Obama’s nominee to head U.S. IRS

WASHINGTON, Dec 10 (Reuters) – A U.S. Senate committee
hearing on President Barack Obama’s nominee to be the new head
of the Internal Revenue Service was unexpectedly cut short on
Tuesday, with no clear schedule set for reconvening or holding a
vote.

John Koskinen, a 74-year-old lawyer with little tax
experience, gave an opening statement to the Senate Finance
Committee and took two questions before Senator Max Baucus,
committee chairman, called a halt to the hearing.

Dec 10, 2013

Obama’s new tax man pledges to restore trust in beleaguered IRS

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s nominee to be the new head of the U.S. Internal Revenue Service on Tuesday pledged to restore the public’s trust in the tax agency and called on Congress to stop cutting the beleaguered IRS’s budget.

John Koskinen, a 74-year-old lawyer with little tax experience, faced members of the Senate Finance Committee at a hearing on his nomination. The panel was likely to vote in favor of his nomination before the end of the year, sending it to the full Senate for consideration, lobbyists said.

Dec 9, 2013

With IRS under fire, Obama’s tax man choice faces Congress

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s choice for U.S. tax commissioner, a multimillionaire with a reputation for troubleshooting, appears headed for confirmation, but on Tuesday will first face some tough questioning in Congress.

The nominee to head the Internal Revenue Service, Democrat John Koskinen, is a 74-year-old lawyer with little tax experience who stepped in to run mortgage finance giant Freddie Mac five years ago when it was engulfed by the credit crisis.