Topics Include Filing Season Statistics, Restaurant Revitalization, and Small Business/Self-Employed Division Updates
As reported by Tax Chair, Stephen Mankowski, CPA, CGMA, who recently attended the monthly IRS Meeting.
Filing Season Fun Facts & Other Updates—At a Glance
Shuttered Venue Operators Grant and Restaurant Revitalization Fund - SBA
Funding for the PPP has been exhausted; however, $6.2B remain available for underserved areas. Applications that are already in the pipeline will likely be approved and funded. The state tax treatment for PPP loans and forgiveness varies from state to state and there continues to be changes.
The Restaurant Revitalization Fund is for more than just restaurants; it includes caterers, bars, wineries, and other entities in the food industry. There have been over 300K applications, and the SBA was encouraging businesses to apply before its deadline (May 24th). $2.7B has been distributed with set aside monies for women, minorities, veterans, and others.
The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant program had 11,600 applications as of May 1. Eligible applicants may qualify for grants equal to 45% of their gross earned revenue, with the maximum amount available for a single grant of $10 million. $2 billion is reserved for eligible applications with up to 50 full-time employees. Plenty of funding still exists but applicants are encouraged to apply by the end of May as grants are awarded on a first come, first served basis. There are a large number of applications in the SBA portal that are not yet submitted. If you are working on an application, make sure it was actually submitted.
The Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) are LOANS and therefore not forgivable; not to be confused with the EIDL GRANTS (of $1000 per employee), which are forgivable. Loans have been increased to $500K per entity. If you had previously applied for a loan, you can also apply for increases.
The SBA has been using a specific Form 4506-T, which allows a lender (in this case the SBA) to verify with the IRS that the forms you supply to prove your income match those in the possession of the IRS. Please use the appropriate form.
Updates from Small Business/Self Employed and New Hiring Goals
Darren Guillot & De Lon Harris have been designated as Co-Commissioners of the SB/SE since Eric Hylton’s retirement at the end of March. Much thought was put into the configuration of the department, including compliance with various offices, such as Examinations and Enforcement, and incorporating many aspects under the Collection Division.
Regarding Covid, things are changing rapidly with the safety for taxpayers and employees remaining paramount. Only a few in-person interactions are occurring with the consent of the taxpayer and representatives in accordance with CDC guidelines. More than 90% of SB/SE Exam employees are still teleworking. Currently, the SB/SE is looking to hire 3100 new employees, including 1300 revenue agents and 400 in campus for correspondence exams. There will be even more hires in 2022. Some of the staff will be specifically assigned to work against abusive promoters, tax scams, and abusive tax shelters.
Collection will continue to be a stand-alone division. Automated levies have been halted since April of 2020 due to Covid. Installment agreements have been modified to include new tax debt. The automated levy program will be returning soon, but the IRS wants to ensure that no additional stimulus payments could be affected by this program. Collection is hiring 518 specialists, including bilingual employees. They are also working on ‘voice-bots’ to help implement online payment agreements and set up installment agreements or transcripts. The program was created in December 2020 and turned over to IT in March 2021. Next year, it is expected that these ‘bots’ will be able to address many of these calls and help increase the level of service to over 50%, which they have not yet been able to achieve. In addition, the Automated Collection System (ACS) staff will be increased with new hiring to ensure critical thinking.
The IRS currently has 1921 revenue officers in the field; over 650 Revenue Officers will be hired this year. This allows growth as the current staff needs to be trained. Regular field work will eventually start. Due to low staff, they are looking to bring on new employees to focus on high income deficiencies and delinquent filers.
Please look for my next IRS Update Reports in the coming months.
The National Conference of CPA Practitioners (NCCPAP) is a professional organization comprised of Certified Public Accountants practicing in the United States. In addition to serving as a forum for education, networking, and community impact, NCCPAP also advocates for its clients. NCCPAP influences tax administration and tax policy by regularly meeting with Internal Revenue Service representatives, state taxing authorities, and elected officials. NCCPAP members represent over one million businesses and individual clients. The organization is headquartered in Woodbury, NY. For more information visit, www.NCCPAP.org.