Expanded IRS reporting would set back inclusion efforts

October 20, 2021

Credit union members from coast to coast have grave concerns with a proposal to expand financial institution reporting to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), CUNA, the American Association of Credit Union Leagues, and all 35 Leagues wrote to Congressional leadership Wednesday.

“This proposal represents an unprecedented overreach of the federal government into the everyday lives of virtually every American,” the letter reads. “And we are concerned that it could have a profoundly negative impact on the unbanked, the underbanked, communities of color, immigrant, and low- and moderate-income households to the extent that it would discourage financially vulnerable individuals from choosing to access mainstream financial services.”

The organizations note the proposal will disproportionately impact lower-income workers including small business owners, independents contractors, and “gig economy” workers.

“They’ve felt the brunt of this pandemic, and now they stand to be caught in a huge IRS dragnet because of the government’s inability to enforce existing tax laws on ultra-wealthy Americans,” the letter reads. “We support efforts to bring about financial inclusion and equity in our economy, but we must strongly oppose policy, such as this, that does just the opposite. This proposal will set back laudable efforts to make our financial system more inclusive and equitable.”

CUNA issued an action alert calling on credit unions to send their concerns to Capitol Hill using its Grassroots Action Center. As of this week, nearly 600,000 messages have been sent.

Credit unions can also activate their members to send messages to Capitol Hill through CUNA’s Member Activation Program (MAP) community.