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Rep. LaTurner jumps on bill to prohibit aggressive IRS surveillance

FILE - In this photo March 22, 2013 file photo, the exterior of the Internal Revenue Service...
FILE - In this photo March 22, 2013 file photo, the exterior of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) building in Washington. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)(Susan Walsh | AP)
Published: Oct. 16, 2021 at 4:34 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - U.S. Representative Jake LaTurner has jumped on board with a bill to prohibit aggressive IRS surveillance under a new proposal from the Biden Administration.

Congressman Jake LaTurner (KS-02) says on Friday, Oct. 15, he cosponsored the Prohibiting IRS Financial Surveillance Act, which would ban the Internal Revenue Service from implementing any new reporting requirements for banks or other financial institutions as part of President Biden’s Administration’s aggressive bank surveillance regime.

Rep. LaTurner said strong concerns have been expressed about privacy, the IRS’s ability to safeguard bank account information and undue burdens on families and small businesses.

“I strongly oppose the Democrats’ IRS surveillance proposal that would force banks to hand over personal account information on transactions over $600. These new burdensome regulations will not close the “tax gap” but instead put more pressure on small and local banks to meet the increased reporting and administrative costs,” said LaTurner. “I am proud to be an original cosponsor of the Prohibiting IRS Financial Surveillance Act that would put a stop to President Biden’s authoritarian power grab and protect the privacy of every single American.”

As part of the Build Back Better plan, LaTurner said the Biden Administration proposed the implementation of a surveillance regime that would require banks and other financial institutions to provide the IRS with details on customers and data for accounts with deposits or withdrawals worth over $600.

On Friday, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt said he helped write a letter to the Administration, which also opposed the proposal.

“Your proposal seeks to leverage private transaction information by effectively transforming banks into large-scale data processors for the IRS, forcing the banks to provide private information regarding common transactions such as rent payments, paying for groceries, and other transactions that are part of everyday life of Americans who have done nothing wrong, are not under suspicion of having done anything illegal and for which the government has no evidence or reason to believe are guilty of civil or criminal violations,” Schmidt and the other attorneys general wrote.

Earlier in October, Senators Roger Marshall (R-Kan.) and Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) both opposed the proposal. Marshall co-sponsored the Tax Gap Reform and Internal Revenue Service Enforcement Act, while Moran spoke on the Senate floor.

“Requiring financial institutions to report any transaction over $600 to the IRS is incredibly intrusive, and violates the rights and privacy of the American taxpayer,” said Senator Marshall. “I’m proud to support this bill to hold the IRS accountable and halt them from harassing American taxpayers.”

“Knowing how much money a Kansan earns isn’t enough; now the IRS wants to know how you spend your money,” said Sen. Moran. “This proposal gives the government unprecedented access to nearly every working American’s bank account. Rather than listen to the enormous pushback from Americans and eliminating consideration of this invasive mandate, Democrats are simply suggesting to tweak this proposal depending on the revenues needed to fund their massive tax-and-spend spree.”

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