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Tell the IRS the truth

Since I'm on a truth-telling jag today, I want to let you know about your chance to tell the IRS the truth.

I'm not talking about putting complete and honest info on your Form 1040, although that's always the best move.

TAP logo Rather, the National Taxpayer Advocate, Nina Olson, is holding a Town Hall meeting in Oklahoma City tomorrow night to get the truth from taxpayers about how the IRS can do a better job.

If you're in the area, please drop in and tell Nina -- and me, since I'm heading up there to be part of the fun, too! -- how you really feel about IRS processes and procedures that complicate your tax-filing life. We just ask that you keep in mind all those things your mother taught you about being polite. Also, remember, we are just the messengers!

No IRS collection or examination agents will be there, so you can really open up. Nina and all of us on the Taxpayer Advocacy Panel (TAP) will take your comments to heart and then to the IRS and do our best to get some helpful changes made.

Remember, this isn't a chance to complain about tax laws per se. Believe me, we share your frustration with some (many, most!) of those. But you need to let your Representative and Senators know about those concerns. They are the folks who write our tax laws.

We're listening: What we at TAP and Taxpayer Advocate's office look at is how the IRS implements those tax laws.

We want to know things such as whether a form is too complicated, I know: Duh! But tell us which ones.

Maybe your complaint is about a a process, such as getting help either by phone or at one of the Taxpayer Assistance Centers.

Or perhaps you'd like to see the IRS offer more electronic options, such easier ways to pay what you owe.

Whatever your concern about IRS operations, we want to know. And if you're in the Oklahoma City area, come on down and tell us in person. Here's the scoop on tomorrow's TAP Town Hall:

  • When: Thursday, March 26, 2009, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.  
  • Where: Metro Tech-Automotive Technology Center (ATC Building Lecture Hall) at 4901 S. Bryant Avenue in Oklahoma City, OK, 73129.

The evening will include a one-hour main session with Nina, who will take questions and suggestions about IRS customer service from the audience.

I and a couple of my TAP colleagues also will be on hand, along with local Taxpayer Advocates, to talk with folks personally about their IRS concerns and suggestions on how improve the IRS.

We'll close the evening with a focus group session to dig a little deeper into IRS customer service issues in a small group setting.

If you have questions about the Town Hall or would like additional information about TAP, please call toll-free 1-888-912-1227 or visit

And if you're in the OKC area, please stop by tomorrow night. We'd love to hear from you and I'd like to meet you in person.


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