Former Commissioner, Charles Rettig, announced his stepping down last October. The hunt has since been on for a new leader for the agency responsible for collecting US tax dollars. All commissioners serve a term of five years, which means the appointed candidate now will span a new administration in two years.
The current candidate, Daniel Werfel, seems a likely shoe-in as both the Democratic and Republican parties seem unopposed to his pending appointment. A confirmation hearing was held this past week to review the nomination and decide the next steps for the agency.
Werfel has already made some big promises on long-awaited deliverables, which included improving both service and technology. Notably, Werfel also promised to look into a supposed computer algorithm issue that was resulting in an abnormal percentage of audits of low-income taxpayers.
Werfel is not new to the seat. He was a temporary acting commissioner in 2013, and served as controller for the Office of Management and Budget. Congress has already requested Werfel to commit to a plan to utilize the newly approved spending and expects a report back within 60 days of his taking the seat.
There is no doubt that the role comes with some heavy lifting this year as questions still swirl around the use of $80 billion in new funding and tax preparers currently mid-way through a filing season that has not received guidance on all law changes. It remains to be seen if the potential new commissioner will be able to deliver on all the promises.