U.S. Rep. Jamie B. Raskin (D-Md.) is spearheading an effort to get the IRS to extend the deadline for Americans to file their 2020 federal taxes by three months.
Raskin and Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr. (D-N.J.) have authored a letter to IRS Commissioner Charles P. Rettig and Mark J. Mazur, acting assistant Treasury secretary for Tax Policy, urging them to extend the traditional April 15 filing deadline until July 15.
Last year, as the COVID-19 pandemic was raging, the federal government and the Maryland government extended their tax deadline by three months. Last week, Comptroller Peter V.R. Franchot (D) announced that he was pushing the state filing deadline back to July 15.
“Almost a year later, we are still grappling with the massive economic, logistical and health challenges wrought by this devastating pandemic,” Raskin and Pascrell wrote. “Millions of stressed-out taxpayers, businesses and preparers would appreciate an extension of the deadline to file their 2020 tax returns.”
The lawmakers went on to note that the four emergency stimulus packages that Congress enacted over the past year have had major impacts on tax policy and directly impact filers.
“With limited in-person tax assistance at local tax preparation clinics, libraries, and community centers, tens of millions of our constituents are facing the same logistical hurdles as last year,” Raskin and Pascrell wrote. “Additionally, the IRS is struggling to address taxpayer issues, with the agency reporting that it is answering only 1 out of 4 telephone calls. As our leaders on the House Ways and Means Committee have pointed out, compared with the same time last year, 27% fewer tax returns have been filed already and 31% fewer returns have been processed by the IRS.”
The letter was signed by more than 100 House members, including Maryland Reps. Kweisi Mfume (D), C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger (D), John P. Sarbanes (D) and David J. Trone (D). Four Republicans are among the signatories.