Is the IRS ready or not? : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

There seems to be little or very limited information as regards the status of the IRS. Not much gets said about it's status. The last word I heard was they were "working" on becoming "ready". Are there any hard facts or data as to what their actual status is?

-- (, September 02, 1999


Good question... because if it looked like they were going to bite the dust, I could reduce what they are currently stealing from me, and use it to put the finishing touches on my supplies.

-- thomas saul (, September 02, 1999.

Make very sure you do not have a refund coming from the IRS in 2000. Also, do not pay in more than just enough to take advantage of one of the exceptions for failure to pay adequate estimates and payroll withholding. These are (1) paying at least 90% of the tax shown on the return for 1999,and (2) paying 100% of the tax shown on the 1998 return. Based on the fact that (1) the IRS computer system is barely able to survive now, (2) many billions have been spent and then the effort abandoned (remember that history shows that 50% of large software projects are abandoned or fail to meet the deadline so the IRS history is typical, another 30% fail to meet the budget, total 80%) (3) the minority hire rules that ensured that all govt hiring was not done to get the best and brightest programers, so there has been a dumbing down (4) and the contract to fix the IRS was only let in October, 1998 after an appeal stating the IRS would otherwise collapse; it is likely the IRS is history.

-- Red (, September 02, 1999.

flat tax

-- Andy (, September 02, 1999.

thomas saul said, ". . . if it looked like they were going to bite the dust, I could reduce what they are currently stealing from me."

thomas, myself, and one-hundred million other people have the same gut reaction about the IRS. Which is why they will never, ever, EVER admit that anything could possibly go wrong with Y2K.

Fear is the IRS's most critical tool. Fear of getting caught, fear of getting audited, fear of having your home and property seized, fear of being tossed in the slammer.

The fear factor only works if people perceive that the IRS has its sh** together with its data processing. If it became common knowledge that the IRS's record-keeping and IT abilities are about to have a stroke, the revenue stream would become a trickle.

These guys, even more than Kosky or Wall Street tycoons, have a vested interest in spinning their y2k compliance status.

You'll never hear the truth about the IRS and y2k. So take what you know about IT complexity, gov't bureaucratic inefficiency, late- starting remediation projects, and immovable deadlines, and draw your own conclusions.

-- rick blaine (, September 02, 1999.

Honestly Andy, what am I going to do with you? How does a flat tax change a damn thing but the tax rate? And you accuse me of not seeing the "big" picture., September 02, 1999.

National Sales Tax Proposal Thread

National Sales Tax Website

Rise and shine, sleepy heads!

-- Uncle Deedah (, September 02, 1999.

Why doesn't the IRS report its progress on remediation like the other agencies (other than to say, "we will be ready")?

You would have to be a moron not to see what's happening. Of any agency that's likely to have Y2K bugs, it's the IRS. More than Social Security who worked on it for 10 years and still isn't quite there.

They'll be lucky if they can get a national sales tax in place next year. It's their only hope.

-- Dog Gone (, September 02, 1999.

Be careful what y'all wish for. On the order of 50% of all paychecks somehow work their way through Feds first. One of my most frequent doomer battle cries is that if the IRS goes down, the whole shebang goes down. Not a pretty sight.

-- Dave (, September 02, 1999.

A twenty year veteran of the IRS told me not long ago that there is not a snowball's chance in hell of the IRS getting its computer systems compliant in time. They barely work now. Expect major IRS breakdowns next year. What a shame.

-- cody varian (, September 02, 1999.

Who cares? Why? Most of you don't owe income tax as you are not engaged in "revenue taxable activities."

-- A (, September 02, 1999.

You know how the IRS usually holds off mailing out the tax forms until just after the holiday season? I predict one of the IRS' contingency plans (or maybe even an indication it is worried) is to mail the forms earlier this year. At least, if they go out at the regular time, I would take that as an indication the IRS believes it is really ready. Nothing quite as "mission-critical" to a government agency as revenue-generating activities.

-- Brooks (, September 02, 1999.

If (and that's a big "if") you believe this article from last year, the IRS finished its remediation of critical systems in January:,4,27886,00.html?

[Fair Use: For Educational/Research Purposes Only]

IRS will be Y2K ready by 1999

By Reuters

Special to CNET

October 23, 1998, 5:10 a.m. PT

It will cost $1 billion to pull it off and "glitches" are inevitable, but the U.S. Internal Revenue Service's computers will be ready to fight the millennium bug on January 1, 1999, IRS's chief said yesterday.

"The moment of truth is very near on Y2K," Charles Rossotti told hundreds of certified public accountants meeting here this week.

"The overall message is that while there may be--and probably will be--some glitches, the good news is that all key [IRS] systems will be Y2K compliant by January 1999," Rossotti said.

The Year 2000--or Y2K--problem stems from the early days of computers, when memory was a precious commodity.

Programmers used only two digits to indicate the year, an economy measure that may cause computers to recognize 2000 as 1900 or to fail all together.

And that spells havoc for those public and private entities nationwide that do not spend the dollars and time needed to gear up for Y2K.

"This is very, very dramatic," Rossotti said of IRS's efforts.

"To give you an idea of the scale, it's costing over $1 billion to do," he said. "We're talking twice what General Motors is going to spend," he said.

Rossotti said the Service already has run into some embarrassing snafus in its preliminary preparations. "There were a few people who got notices saying they owe the IRS $300 million," he said.

Fortunately, their tax advisers called the agency for an explanation, he said.

Turning to other front-burner issues, Rossotti said the Service will have a detailed "blueprint"for restructuring the agency--as mandated earlier this year by the U.S. Congress--by April 15, 1999.

Planners want to divide IRS into four operating sectors.

They would target the nation's 90 million salaried individuals, its 39 million small businesses, its 80,000 corporations and the 1.5 million tax-exempt entities, including state and local governments.

Rossotti said the Service hopes to complete reorganizations for the latter two sectors--the corporate and tax-exempt divisions--by the end of 1999.

IRS has launched a broad talent search, in both the public and private sectors, for two people to head those divisions, Rossotti said.

Story Copyright ) 1998 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved.


-- Linkmeister (, September 02, 1999.

Scary Gary North once had a link to the original RFP (rrequest for proposal) sent out by IRS a couple of yeras ago. They were looking for a company to essentially take over their DP functions. The details in that RFP revealed an amazingly screwed up system.

OK, Linkmeister, let's see how good you REALLY are... ;-)

-- Lewis (, September 02, 1999.

Here's Prime's Contract

it's .pdf

-- enough free time to beat linkmeister (, September 02, 1999.

Also see this link:

-- Linkmeister (, September 02, 1999.

Brother-in-law is an IRS agent and he told me that there is no way they will be ready. He has moved his retirement money into treasuries and my sister is prepared to the max. He also told me that they are 2 years behind on audits...lucky for us!

-- bardou (, September 02, 1999.

Here's the most recent article I could find about what the IRS is saying about its Y2K efforts: /news/19990729/2304976.inp

[Fair Use: For Educational/Research Purposes Only]

Commissioner: IRS Over The Y2K Hump

By John Moore

07/29/99 07:01:00 PM

But remediation work has slowed modernization of aging systems.

The Internal Revenue Service has put the "biggest part of the most serious risk" behind it as the agency nears the final testing stage of its Year 2000 remediation effort, according to IRS commissioner Charles Rossotti.

Rossotti, who spoke Thursday at the National Press Club, said testing of converted systems is underway and that the last phase of testing is slated to begin Oct. 1. The "tax system will continue as the century changes," he said. By the time it wraps up the conversion, the IRS will have spent nearly $1 billion in bringing its systems into Year 2000 compliance.

That kind of investment, however, has prevented the agency from replacing computer systems that date to the mid 1960s. "In recent years we haven't implemented any new systems, as we consumed most of our technology resources fixing the Y2K problem," Rossotti said.

'Accelerated' Progress In 2001/2002

But Rossotti predicted that in 2001 and 2002 the IRS should experience an accelerated rate of progress. The agency already is establishing a long-term plan for replacing its antiquated computers. Much of that work will fall under the IRS' Prime Alliance contract, which was awarded to Computer Sciences Corp. late last year.

Rossotti calls the upgrade "the biggest, toughest computer business systems replacement project that I have ever seen." But Rossotti is no stranger to managing systems integration tasks; he was a top executive at integrator American Management Systems Inc. prior to joining the IRS in November 1997.

In other remarks, Rossotti said that the IRS will create more options for filing tax returns via the Internet and "put a process in place" for dealing with small businesses that may be unable to file a return because of Y2K glitches. He says he will make sure the agency deals with such cases in appropriate ways without making Y2K an excuse for not filing on time.


-- Linkmeister (, September 02, 1999.


big picture,

sinking ship,

straw=flat tax,


-- Andy (, September 02, 1999.


big picture,

sinking ship,

sharks in water,

sales tax=repellent

got it?

-- Uncle Deedah (, September 02, 1999.

So the response to my question is nobody knows for sure. We have the head of the IRS saying we are ready. OK so given how truthfull our government seems to be lately do I believe this? Do you? I run a company, I need to know that if I do pay my payroll taxs they will be credited correctly. I am not interested in the BS about how we don't owe taxes. That is not my fight right now. I pick fights I know I can win and that is a non-winner right now.

So I guess we all wait until 1/1/2000 and see what happens.

-- (, September 02, 1999.


of course i've bleedin got it you maggot!

I hate any sort of tax, wot i am saying is these laggards have fucked up their irs remediation SOOOOO badly, all they will have left is a database of schmucks, and I, unfortunately, am one, that have previously PAID TAX...

don't quote me on this, but if i was joe avearage irs manager-nazi i would also lay claim to this database of circa 200 million patsies and declare a FLAT TAX .... to start with....

geddit uncle???

corrrrect me if i'm wrong!

-- Andy (, September 03, 1999.

OK, I will.

First of all I am not a maggot, but at least you didn't call me what you are, you fa....oh never mind. I'm pretty sure that you were joking, you hom...oh never mind.

don't quote me on this, but if i was joe avearage irs manager-nazi i would also lay claim to this database of circa 200 million patsies and declare a FLAT TAX .... to start with.... Oooopsie, is that a quote?

Pray tell me, oh wise one, if they cannot use their computers to collect a two rate tax, just what the hell makes you think they can use them to collect a one rate tax? Magic?

-- Uncle Deedah (, September 03, 1999.

Favorite uncle D--

I hope you get this,(no bad blood).

Not to stick up for andy!! but there is no way that response is from him. The *i*s' nor the the attitude jibe.

Just call it a hunch!!

-- Dave Butts (, September 03, 1999.

Owner: You're a pansy just like the rest of the sheeple. Educate yourself and few of your employees (see post above). Pay them gross. When the IRS or state income tax board starts making noises about levies on them, ask them for a letter of indemnification from employee suits if you honor the levies. (YOU are liable since YOU are taking the money from the employee, not the IRS/state.) The response you get will be silence.

It's clowns like you I hope get hit with a Y2K 9 or 10.

-- A (, September 05, 1999.

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