INDEPENDENT BUDGET OFFICE
The City of New York
110 WILLIAM STREET, 14TH FL., NEW YORK, NY 10038
|For Immediate Release
Wednesday, April 14, 1999
|Contact: Herbert Block
* NEWS RELEASE *
NO TAXATION WITHOUT EXPLANATION
INTERACTIVE "TAX RECEIPT" SERVICE AVAILABLE
Schumer to Introduce Legislation to Have IRS Replicate IBO Website Service
Taxpayers who wonder what the government does with the taxes they are paying this week can get the answer on the internet through the Tax Receipt service of the New York City Independent Budget Office (IBO). By visiting IBO's website at www.ibo.nyc.ny.us and simply entering the total amount of income taxes paid from 1998 tax returns, taxpayers can get an itemized printout of how much of their city, state or federal taxes went for specific services. A taxpayer will be able to easily find out how much he or she personally contributed - in actual dollars and cents - to government activities, such as national defense, libraries, Medicaid, transportation, space flight, garbage collection, interest on debt, higher education, prisons, veterans benefits, and disaster relief. Any taxpayer in the country can use IBO's website to get a federal Tax Receipt and any taxpayer in New York State can also use the website to get a state Tax Receipt.
"With credit card and most other bills, you receive a detailed explanation of the charges. But when it comes to income taxes - probably the greatest single annual expense for most people - taxpayers get no documentation in return. IBO's Tax Receipt enables a taxpayer to better understand how the government spends his or her money by showing how much that taxpayer paid for specific government services," said Douglas A. Criscitello, IBO Director.
The Tax Receipt service is the basis for the Taxpayer-Right-To-Know-Act legislation introduced today by Senator Charles E. Schumer (NY), which would require the IRS to establish a similar program on its website. "IBO's Tax Receipt is a simple but ingenious concept that provides New Yorkers a valuable service. There is no reason why the IRS shouldn't offer the same service to every taxpayer. Taxpayers deserve to know how their money is spent," said Senator Schumer.
Established in 1996 pursuant to the New York City Charter, IBO provides nonpartisan analysis to both elected officials and the public on fiscal and budgetary issues affecting New Yorkers.
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