The House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee plans to hold a hearing on the 2008 tax-filing season, Internal Revenue Service operations, fiscal year 2009 budget proposals and the IRS National Taxpayer Advocate's annual report.

The hearing will take place on Thursday, March 13. The subcommittee will discuss taxpayer service and assistance, earned income tax credit outreach, and the status of economic stimulus payments.

"The IRS must enforce our tax laws, but it also needs to make taxpayer service a priority so that we maximize the numbers of taxpayers who voluntarily comply with our tax laws," said subcommittee Chairman John Lewis (pictured), D-Ga., in a statement.

The panel also will review IRS operations not related to the filing season, including examination rates, collection activities, the tax gap, electronic filing and protection of taxpayer information from identity theft and data loss incidents.

As part of its consideration of IRS operations, the subcommittee will discuss the administration's fiscal year 2009 proposed budget for the IRS of $11.4 billion, an increase of 4.3 percent over fiscal year 2008.

The subcommittee plans to examine the administration's priorities with respect to taxpayer services, enforcement, operations support and business systems modernization. In addition, the subcommittee intends to consider the administration's compliance initiatives and budget proposals to close the tax gap. The National Taxpayer Advocate will also highlight key issues and recommendations from her December 2007 report to Congress.

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