Georgia CPAs lobby Capitol Hill
Members of the Georgia Society of CPAs were among the accountants who recently visited their state’s representatives in Congress to push for legislative priorities during the American Institute of CPAs’ Spring Meeting of Council.
The Capitol Hill visits are a perennial feature whenever the AICPA holds its Spring Meeting of Council in Washington, D.C. (see CPAs lobby Congress on tax and accounting issues).
Some of the main priorities this year included calling for modernizing the IRS’s taxpayer services, along with changing the trigger for when the IRS can grant deadline extensions when natural disasters happen. The GSCPA and the AICPA believe Congress can help taxpayers by enacting legislation to give the IRS the authority to postpone deadlines when a national disaster is declared by a state’s governor, rather than waiting for a federal disaster declaration from the president, The GSCPA and the AICPA have worked together previously on proposing a set of permanent disaster relief tax provisions, but enactment of this new legislation would provide more help and certainty to preparers and taxpayers.
“When a natural disaster strikes, the last thing anyone needs to worry about is filing taxes,” said Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga. “Eight months ago, Hurricane Michael ravaged southwest Georgia, and we’ve seen just how challenging the aftermath can be. The federal government should do all it can to relieve unnecessary burdens for disaster victims so they can focus on helping their neighbors and beginning the road to recovery.”
The GSCPA and the AICPA also want to create a Practitioner Services Division within the IRS to help tax preparers to solve their clients’ tax problems more efficiently .Several such programs are spread throughout the IRS, and they don’t all communicate or integrate with each other or have access to the same taxpayer information.
GSCPA members also called for sound tax policy as they talked with lawmakers about the complicated tax challenges presented by the digital economy, and a Congressional resolution pertaining to the fiscal state of the nation. They also requested lawmakers to support a congressional fiscal state of the nation resolution, calling for the Government Accountability Office’s Comptroller General to deliver a presentation to a joint session of the House and Senate Budget Committees on the GAO’s auditor’s report of the U.S. government’s financial statements.