IRS Still Has Millions of Unprocessed 2020 Returns

( )- As Americans were getting their 2021 income tax forms filed by Monday, those who anticipate a refund better not expect it any time soon. The Internal Revenue Service still hasn’t processed millions of 2020 tax returns filed last April.

Our Federal government at work, folks. The IRS has one job, and even that is too much for them.

Testifying before Congress last month, IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig promised to clear the backlog of 20 million unprocessed 2020 tax returns by the end of 2022.

Rettig blamed the massive backlog on an array of issues, including the IRS’s “new responsibilities,” delays in modernization, and funding uncertainty that slows down the hiring of additional staff.

But one of the biggest reasons the IRS is unable to keep up with the one job it was founded to do is that Congress handed the IRS a slew of new responsibilities in the multi-trillion-dollar social spending bills it passed over the last two years. With these spending bills, the IRS has now been tasked with distributing and tracking government giveaways like the COVID stimulus checks and the monthly child tax credit payments.

As a result, the IRS is unable to keep up with the one job for which the IRS exists.

Alex Muresianu from the Tax Foundation told Just the News that the March 2020 CARES Act alone increased the agency’s administrative responsibilities “enormously” making it responsible for distributing hundreds of billions of dollars in social programs. While the CARES Act did include additional IRS funding to help make things run smoother, Muresianu said the IRS did not have the time needed to upgrade its capacity.

Congress didn’t think of that, did they?

Every new social program they create requires additional bureaucracy. So while Americans have to beg for an extension to file their tax returns late, the IRS can let a backlog of returns pile up by the millions. And for the people who filed in April 2021 expecting a prompt refund, having to wait until the end of 2022 to get it only adds insult to injury.

Republicans on the House Oversight Committee recently sent a letter to the IRS blasting the agency for permitting IRS employees to continue working remotely despite COVID restrictions being lifted. Republicans want these employees to get back to the office where they can more quickly and efficiently clear up the backlog.