Curbelo Urges Treasury Secretary to Invest in IRS Services for Elderly, Low-Income Americans
Yesterday, during a Ways and Means Committee hearing, Representative Carlos Curbelo (FL-26) urged Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin to protect funding for programs like the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA), Low Income Taxpayer Clinics (LITC) and Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE), that are specifically targeted to ensure tax payers have access to services where they can confidently file returns without fear of being scammed by fraudulent preparers.
Although Curbelo expressed concerns with President Trump’s FY18 Budget, he was pleased to see level funding for the programs listed above that he directly advocated for earlier this year. Curbelo and Representative Danny Davis (IL-07) also led a group of 55 bipartisan Members of Congress in a letter to urge House Appropriations leaders to provide full and robust funding for these programs.
A transcript of Curbelo’s opening remarks can be found below. A video of the full exchange is available here.
U.S. Representative Carlos Curbelo
Representative Curbelo: “Thank you, Mr. Chairman and thank you, Mr. Secretary for your presence here today.
“I would briefly like to associate myself with the Chairman’s comments at the beginning of this hearing, where he discussed the importance of reforming and strengthening programs, like Social Security and Medicare. I think it’s critical that the Administration work with this Committee on not just making sure that we keep our promises to today’s seniors, but also tomorrow’s seniors. People in my generation, people younger than me, who would like to see these programs around for us when we get a little older.
“Mr. Secretary, the budget provides continued support for the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program (VITA) as well as tax counseling for the elderly and low-income tax payer clinics or VITA, which provides assistance for low-income residents in under-served communities in filing their tax returns. We are dedicated to creating a service first IRS.”