The Washington headquarters of the Internal Revenue Service reopened to the agency’s employees last week, following some $25 million in repairs made necessary after massive June flooding.
Torrential rains closed the building beginning June 26, after an estimated 5.5 million gallons of water flooded the building’s basement and sub-basement, causing extensive damage to electrical equipment and air handlers. In mid-July, the agency announced that the office -- which housed some 2,700 workers, mostly tax attorneys, law enforcement agents and administrative staff -- wouldn’t reopen until early 2007.
IRS employees, who had been scattered across 15 other buildings in the metro Washington area, will be moved back into the building, located at 1111 Constitution Ave. NW, in stages. Between last week and Monday, about 1,000 employees have already returned. Another 800 employees will be back in the building by Dec. 19.
The General Services Administration spent more than $25 million repairing the building. While the electrical and air systems have been repaired, construction work will continue on other basement areas until sometime in April. The building has been tested extensively by a variety of health and safety officials and a team of industrial hygienists has continually monitored the facility since the flood to ensure the environment was safe for anyone entering the building.
With the reopening of the headquarters, the temporary procedures for submitting certain requests and submissions will no longer be in effect. As of Dec. 11, taxpayers should make their submissions as they normally did before the flood.
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