PCAOB PROPOSES NEW ETHICS RULEWASHINGTON, D.C. - The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board has proposed a new ethics rule on communicating with audit committees concerning independence.

Rule 3526 would require an accounting firm to communicate to a company's audit committee about any relationships between the firm and a company that might reasonably affect the firm's independence. The communications would be required before the firm accepts any new engagement, as well as annually for continuing engagements.

The PCAOB also proposed an amendment to Rule 3523, on tax services for persons in financial reporting oversight roles. The amendment would exclude the portion of the audit period that precedes the beginning of the professional engagement period.

The board is seeking comment on the proposals and has adjusted the implementation schedule for Rule 3523 to allow time for the comments to be received.

ACTING IRS COMMISSIONER FOLLOWS EVERSON

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Following on the heels of his former boss, Internal Revenue Service Acting Commissioner Kevin M. Brown plans to leave the IRS in mid-September to become chief operating officer of the American Red Cross.

He has served as acting commissioner since May and also serves as deputy commissioner for services and enforcement. He also served as chief of staff under former Commissioner Mark W. Everson, who left his post for the American Red Cross in April when he became the organization's president and chief executive.

Brown previously served as commissioner of the IRS Small Business/Self-Employed Division and was division counsel in that same division.

Before he joined the IRS, Brown worked for the Department of Justice as an attorney in the Tax Division's Appellate Section and as counsel to the assistant attorney general for appellate matters.

The IRS has not yet named a replacement.

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