The Internal Revenue Service is asking the public for recommendations on items that should be included on its 2011-2012 Guidance Priority List.

The Treasury Department’s Office of Tax Policy and the IRS use the Guidance Priority List each year to identify and prioritize the tax issues that should be addressed through regulations, revenue rulings, revenue procedures, notices and other published administrative guidance.  The 2011-2012 Guidance Priority List will establish the guidance that the Treasury Department and the IRS intend to issue from July 1, 2011, through June 30, 2012. 

Notice 2011-39, which asks for suggestions for the Guidance Priority List, will be published in Internal Revenue Bulletin 2011-20 on May 16, 2011.

The Treasury Department and the IRS said they recognize the importance of public input to formulate a Guidance Priority List that focuses resources on guidance items that are most important to taxpayers and tax administration. Published guidance plays an important role in increasing voluntary compliance by helping to clarify ambiguous areas of the tax law.

In reviewing recommendations and selecting projects for inclusion on the 2011- 2012 Guidance Priority List, the Treasury Department and the IRS said they would consider the following:

1. Whether the recommended guidance resolves significant issues relevant to many taxpayers;
2. Whether the recommended guidance promotes sound tax administration;
3. Whether the recommended guidance can be drafted in a manner that will enable taxpayers to easily understand and apply the guidance;
4. Whether the recommended guidance involves regulations that are outmoded, ineffective, insufficient, or excessively burdensome and that should be modified, streamlined, expanded, or repealed;
5. Whether the Service can administer the recommended guidance on a uniform basis; and
6. Whether the recommended guidance reduces controversy and lessens the burden on taxpayers or the Service.

Taxpayers may submit recommendations for guidance at any time during the year.

Recommendations should be submitted by June 1, 2011, for possible inclusion on the original 2011-2012 Guidance Priority List. The Treasury Department and the IRS added that they may update the 2011-2012 Guidance Priority List periodically to reflect additional guidance that the Treasury Department and the Service intend to publish during the plan year. The periodic updates allow the Treasury Department and the IRS to respond to the need for additional guidance that may arise during the plan year.  Recommendations for guidance received after June 1, 2011, will be reviewed for inclusion in the next periodic update.

Taxpayers are not required to submit recommendations for guidance in any particular format.  Taxpayers should, however, briefly describe the recommended guidance and explain the need for the guidance. In addition, taxpayers may include an analysis of how the issue should be resolved. It would be helpful if taxpayers suggesting more than one guidance project prioritize the projects by order of importance, the IRS noted. If a large number of projects are being suggested, it also would be helpful if the projects were grouped in terms of high, medium or low priority.

Taxpayers should send written comments to:
Internal Revenue Service
Attn: CC:PA:LPD:PR (Notice 2011-39)
Room 5203
P.O. Box 7604
Ben Franklin Station
Washington, D.C. 20044

Register or login for access to this item and much more

All Accounting Today content is archived after seven days.

Community members receive:
  • All recent and archived articles
  • Conference offers and updates
  • A full menu of enewsletter options
  • Web seminars, white papers, ebooks

Don't have an account? Register for Free Unlimited Access