Senator Byrd Presses Treasury Secretary on IRS Privatization

"U.S. Senator Robert C. Byrd, D-W.Va., pressed the Treasury Secretary about the Administration's plans to 'contract out' key federal jobs. 'Federal employees in West Virginia have been cited time and again for their excellent work ethic and commitment to quality. Yet they are rewarded with constant worry for their job future,' Byrd said. 'I am very suspicious of this privatization scheme. It seems to be stretching across the board with this Administration. Congress needs to oversee it very, very carefully. We will be watching and listening,' Byrd said. During a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation and the Treasury hearing Tuesday, Byrd asked Treasury Secretary John Snow about specific plans to hire private debt collectors to pursue delinquent taxpayers instead of relying on federal IRS compliance officers." Byrd raised this key point, 'Why are you risking the privacy rights of the American taxpayer on a scheme that has already failed...?'"