Here is something that should put everyone in a festive holiday mood. Or at the very least will have you chuckling as you shake your head. Okay, maybe chuckling isn’t the right word.
As first reported by a DC radio news station, and now picked up nationally, federal government employees owe more than three billion dollars in unpaid taxes. All together, more than 276,000 federal employees live off taxpayer dollars, but are delinquent in paying taxes themselves. Just to remind everyone, we are currently facing the biggest deficit of our country’s history.
The worst offender of all executive departments is the Department of Housing and Urban Development, where more than four percent of the Department’s bureaucrats owe taxes. The Senate owes approximately $2.5 million; the House of Representatives just under $6 million. The United States Postal Service, the largest government agency other than the Armed Forces, has a non-compliance rate that nears four percent – think they could get away with saying the check is in the mail? Thankfully, the Treasury Department – under which the IRS is classified – has less than one percent of its workers in non-compliance. For the record, this does not count Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, who cleared up back taxes he had failed to pay before taking the job.
Politicians should reign in their out of control spending, with the ultimate goal being the reduction and simplification of our tax system. Especially during this recession, politicians and government bureaucrats should learn to live within their means – just like the rest of us. And while the government attempts to steal more money out of our pockets through higher taxes, the least government employees can do is pay what they owe. Until the day tax reform arrives, if they need some extra dollars, I know where they can find about three billion of them.