April 23,2007

Grassley Urges a Reality Check on IRS’ Private Debt Collection Program

WASHINGTON – Sen. Chuck Grassley, ranking member of the Committee on Finance, is urging his fellow senators to reject inaccurate claims about the Internal Revenue Service’s program to collect taxes using private contractors. In a “Dear Colleague” letter, Grassley points out that the IRS’ own collection infrastructure is better set up for placing liens and garnishing wages than making initial phone calls to delinquent taxpayers to set up a payment plan. Grassley writes that the private debt collection program consists of having contractors making basic phone calls to taxpayers, contrary to the images of thuggish collection agents conjured by opponents.

The text of Grassley’s “Dear Colleague” letter follows here. Attached is a document from the IRS responding to questions from the non-partisan, congressional Joint Committee on Taxation.