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Internal Revenue Service

As a bureau of the Department of the Treasury and as one of the world's most efficient tax administrators, the IRS role is to help the large majority of compliant taxpayers with the tax law, while ensuring that the minority who are unwilling to comply pay their fair share. (Source: www.irs.gov)

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RN94509  
#761 Posted : Wednesday, March 20, 2019 8:12:33 AM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: LieutenantBlantyre Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: RN94509 Go to Quoted Post


Pessimist! We're not answering the phones now anywhere near the level of service goal. Unless Congress fails to pass the expected full year continuing resolution, we're in for the long haul.


I'm a realist not a pessimist. You dont have to save now or get a tsp loan to have a nest egg. But if we get shutdown in October dont expect to have any sympathy.
chriswt25  
#762 Posted : Thursday, March 21, 2019 11:37:30 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: RN94509 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: LieutenantBlantyre Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: RN94509 Go to Quoted Post


Pessimist! We're not answering the phones now anywhere near the level of service goal. Unless Congress fails to pass the expected full year continuing resolution, we're in for the long haul.


I'm a realist not a pessimist. You dont have to save now or get a tsp loan to have a nest egg. But if we get shutdown in October dont expect to have any sympathy.



The thing about the shutdown that surprised me was that people that are seasonal's should have been most prepared to weather the storm of a lapse in pay. A seasonal can get laid off at any time with a 5 days notice, so it is foolish to not be prepared. As much as I sometimes hate this job, I make sure I work some OT when I can to be ready for stuff like this.
RN94509  
#763 Posted : Thursday, March 21, 2019 11:52:08 AM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: chriswt25 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: RN94509 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: LieutenantBlantyre Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: RN94509 Go to Quoted Post




The thing about the shutdown that surprised me was that people that are seasonal's should have been most prepared to weather the storm of a lapse in pay. A seasonal can get laid off at any time with a 5 days notice, so it is foolish to not be prepared. As much as I sometimes hate this job, I make sure I work some OT when I can to be ready for stuff like this.


I started my career at the IRS as a w&I 0962 seasonal employee. I was furloughed one year for almost 9 months. Seasonal employees definitely need a nest egg and regular employees need one now two. The political climate is getting bad. I don't care what side of it you're on. The fact remains the President isnt going to get the budget he wants and if he vetoes what's given to him for 10-1-19 we all are going to get furloughed and since Congress passed the law saying we will get back pay I imagine some states might not let feds get UI benefits. Plus ui benefits dont cover everything.

Btw if you're still seasonal I hope you start applying for full time non seasonal work.
LieutenantBlantyre  
#764 Posted : Thursday, March 21, 2019 4:51:35 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: RN94509 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: chriswt25 Go to Quoted Post
The thing about the shutdown that surprised me was that people that are seasonal's should have been most prepared to weather the storm of a lapse in pay. A seasonal can get laid off at any time with a 5 days notice, so it is foolish to not be prepared. As much as I sometimes hate this job, I make sure I work some OT when I can to be ready for stuff like this.


I started my career at the IRS as a w&I 0962 seasonal employee. I was furloughed one year for almost 9 months. Seasonal employees definitely need a nest egg and regular employees need one now two. The political climate is getting bad. I don't care what side of it you're on. The fact remains the President isnt going to get the budget he wants and if he vetoes what's given to him for 10-1-19 we all are going to get furloughed and since Congress passed the law saying we will get back pay I imagine some states might not let feds get UI benefits. Plus ui benefits dont cover everything.

Btw if you're still seasonal I hope you start applying for full time non seasonal work.


I've been working on plans since December 22nd. They're not moving as fast as I want them to. If I get this done I'll be able to walk away at a decent point. The investment portfolio has been building up slowly but surely and I've been doing roll-overs out of every little retirement plan that caught money from money along the way into a single plan. I've got dividends that'll hit the new-ish brokerage account every couple of weeks over the next 12 months. I'm having to get out of Treasury bills and notes since the market for those basically went to crap recently.

As for working, that's still being built up. I'm not sure how that plan will play out. The regulatory paperwork for a few things is still being digested by other parties.

I'm not ready to walk away yet but I'm working on it. The goal is to be ready before the end of the fiscal year. If anything happens then I won't have to worry about it.

Based upon traffic flow, excess time in READY, and how things are otherwise appearing it is looking like we may have a seasonal release at some point. Whatever JOC is modeling as predicted flow is not what we're getting. We had people in READY for almost an hour straight on ASG224 this morning.
chriswt25  
#765 Posted : Thursday, March 21, 2019 9:15:10 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: RN94509 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: chriswt25 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: RN94509 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: LieutenantBlantyre Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: RN94509 Go to Quoted Post




The thing about the shutdown that surprised me was that people that are seasonal's should have been most prepared to weather the storm of a lapse in pay. A seasonal can get laid off at any time with a 5 days notice, so it is foolish to not be prepared. As much as I sometimes hate this job, I make sure I work some OT when I can to be ready for stuff like this.


I started my career at the IRS as a w&I 0962 seasonal employee. I was furloughed one year for almost 9 months. Seasonal employees definitely need a nest egg and regular employees need one now two. The political climate is getting bad. I don't care what side of it you're on. The fact remains the President isnt going to get the budget he wants and if he vetoes what's given to him for 10-1-19 we all are going to get furloughed and since Congress passed the law saying we will get back pay I imagine some states might not let feds get UI benefits. Plus ui benefits dont cover everything.

Btw if you're still seasonal I hope you start applying for full time non seasonal work.




I am fortunate enough to have other sources of income to survive any shutdown or seasonal layoff, so I have stayed seasonal for the 16 years I have been a CSR. This will be my last season. Even with the financial wiggle room I have, I still recommend that anyone that can work OT do so while they offer it. If you play your cards right, that money will be the bridge you need to get to UI and beyond in the event of any shutdown or seasonal layoff. Better to not have to touch the TSP.

In my case, I would LOVE a short season this year and ride out UI until I retire when we get called back, however the way the last few years have gone, I am not counting on much of a furlough this season. Who really knows about another shutdown, but with all the acrimony with this group of pols, it wouldn't shock me if it happens again.

Edited by user Thursday, March 21, 2019 9:17:17 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

Hired 2015  
#766 Posted : Friday, March 22, 2019 4:01:20 AM(UTC)
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UI might become a problem as some states ruled that workers that claimed UI in the last shutdown are not eligible to reapply for a year. Then state refunds of those federal workers were immediately offset despite the fact many had repaid UI. Many states want to abandon UI benefits for federal seasonal workers in favor of systems like public schools have where workers can set aside pay to receive checks over their summer vacation.

Given the fact states administer UI for federal workers where uniform rules do not apply enterprise wide we all do not have equality of UI benefits access and rules. I chose to accept just one week of UI. I left the funds on the debit card but my state didn't have a mechanism to reverse those funds.

UI for federal workers is becoming less reliable in many states.

chriswt25  
#767 Posted : Friday, March 22, 2019 7:00:36 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Hired 2015 Go to Quoted Post
UI might become a problem as some states ruled that workers that claimed UI in the last shutdown are not eligible to reapply for a year. Then state refunds of those federal workers were immediately offset despite the fact many had repaid UI. Many states want to abandon UI benefits for federal seasonal workers in favor of systems like public schools have where workers can set aside pay to receive checks over their summer vacation.

Given the fact states administer UI for federal workers where uniform rules do not apply enterprise wide we all do not have equality of UI benefits access and rules. I chose to accept just one week of UI. I left the funds on the debit card but my state didn't have a mechanism to reverse those funds.

UI for federal workers is becoming less reliable in many states.




There is no way I would have taken the UI during the shutdown, unless absolutely necessary. I think I warned about the mess it caused many people from the 2013 shutdown

Hired 2015  
#768 Posted : Saturday, March 23, 2019 9:29:21 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: chriswt25 Go to Quoted Post


There is no way I would have taken the UI during the shutdown, unless absolutely necessary. I think I warned about the mess it caused many people from the 2013 shutdown



In my state furloughed federal workers were told unemployment was an option. I stood in line at unemployment with workers from many federal agencies. We were issued papers to apply for unemployment. Families with kids to feed were misled. I applied for unemployment to support them and the reality people can't work for free.
RN94509  
#769 Posted : Saturday, March 23, 2019 10:01:27 AM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: Hired 2015 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: chriswt25 Go to Quoted Post


There is no way I would have taken the UI during the shutdown, unless absolutely necessary. I think I warned about the mess it caused many people from the 2013 shutdown



In my state furloughed federal workers were told unemployment was an option. I stood in line at unemployment with workers from many federal agencies. We were issued papers to apply for unemployment. Families with kids to feed were misled. I applied for unemployment to support them and the reality people can't work for free.


If theres another shutdown I dont expect IRS to have people working other the LEO's after the ruling from the on going NTEU lawsuit. Unfortunately for RO's they are now classifying that as a leo now.(from everything I've heard)
chriswt25  
#770 Posted : Saturday, March 23, 2019 12:15:51 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Hired 2015 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: chriswt25 Go to Quoted Post


There is no way I would have taken the UI during the shutdown, unless absolutely necessary. I think I warned about the mess it caused many people from the 2013 shutdown



In my state furloughed federal workers were told unemployment was an option. I stood in line at unemployment with workers from many federal agencies. We were issued papers to apply for unemployment. Families with kids to feed were misled. I applied for unemployment to support them and the reality people can't work for free.



You applied because you were financially unable to get through the time we weren't getting paid. I remember you asking about food services. My only point was that I worked a ton of OT (as i do every year) in case of a furlough or in this case, a shutdown. The UI can lead to a hassle (in most states) only because you have to wind up paying it back on demand, and then you get presented with a 1099 and have to account for the payback on your return. It is just something I would rather not deal with if at all possible when there is a payback involved.

There was plenty of OT available in most locations for CSR's last year. Working it (if you can, when offered) can help prevent us from becoming destitute in the event this happens again. The other reason it is advantageous to earn as much as possible with OT, is it substantially increases the amount of a seasonal's unemployment check in the event of any furlough, or if you decide to apply for UI in a shutdown

Edited by user Saturday, March 23, 2019 7:54:27 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

LieutenantBlantyre  
#771 Posted : Friday, March 29, 2019 4:50:44 PM(UTC)
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If phone volume doesn't get more consistent we might be seeing an actual seasonal release this year unlike last processing year. Inventory levels seem a little too stable. After all that time spent training people up for 231, barely anybody is calling in for tax law help. 20 and 224 aren't exactly going crazy. JOC's been calling out everybody to bring their staffing down to schedule for the past several days.

I know that historically things should pick up over the next two weeks. If it doesn't, I've got to hurry up on a few things.
RN94509  
#772 Posted : Friday, March 29, 2019 5:24:58 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: LieutenantBlantyre Go to Quoted Post
If phone volume doesn't get more consistent we might be seeing an actual seasonal release this year unlike last processing year. Inventory levels seem a little too stable. After all that time spent training people up for 231, barely anybody is calling in for tax law help. 20 and 224 aren't exactly going crazy. JOC's been calling out everybody to bring their staffing down to schedule for the past several days.

I know that historically things should pick up over the next two weeks. If it doesn't, I've got to hurry up on a few things.


Depends on what center you're at, IMF or BMF. A lot of the calls IMF use to handle now go to ACS. You could see them re-route some balance due calls. Because acs is swamped.
gardenia  
#773 Posted : Friday, March 29, 2019 5:37:46 PM(UTC)
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I’m in Dallas. IMF. They act like the house is on fire all day every day. Constantly complaining about not meeting level of service. Don’t want anyone going to the restroom on the hour or half hour. This despite people sitting available on tax law. I don’t get it. I usually feel management is there solely to make us miserable. I’m going on furlough this year. With or without unemployment.

Edited by user Friday, March 29, 2019 5:38:44 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

RN94509  
#774 Posted : Friday, March 29, 2019 6:28:17 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: gardenia Go to Quoted Post
I’m in Dallas. IMF. They act like the house is on fire all day every day. Constantly complaining about not meeting level of service. Don’t want anyone going to the restroom on the hour or half hour. This despite people sitting available on tax law. I don’t get it. I usually feel management is there solely to make us miserable. I’m going on furlough this year. With or without unemployment.


They can route calls to where they want them.

Honestly my time in BMF accounts management was a nightmare. They micro-managed everything. No wrap, no cell phones on the desk. Dont take vacation below 20 hours(that's right). If during a call they see you looking at or even have it on the desktop something other than what's needed for the call it's a issues: and this includes work emails.

Acs is completely different. AM is the worst job at the IRS. However SBSE ACS seems to be a lot better
gardenia  
#775 Posted : Saturday, March 30, 2019 5:58:18 AM(UTC)
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I second that AM is the worst job in the IRS. Some of the stuff they get away with is unbelievable. Then they ask in the meetings for suggestions on how to improve morale!
LieutenantBlantyre  
#776 Posted : Saturday, March 30, 2019 1:01:09 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: RN94509 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: LieutenantBlantyre Go to Quoted Post
If phone volume doesn't get more consistent we might be seeing an actual seasonal release this year unlike last processing year. Inventory levels seem a little too stable. After all that time spent training people up for 231, barely anybody is calling in for tax law help. 20 and 224 aren't exactly going crazy. JOC's been calling out everybody to bring their staffing down to schedule for the past several days.

I know that historically things should pick up over the next two weeks. If it doesn't, I've got to hurry up on a few things.


Depends on what center you're at, IMF or BMF. A lot of the calls IMF use to handle now go to ACS. You could see them re-route some balance due calls. Because acs is swamped.


It is very likely that no re-route will happen. Five Nineteen One got re-written to limit AM's authorities pretty hard. There are things that we used to do that we simply must send to ACS now. The overall Director of AM in Atlanta is also very insistent that AM is not going to take back any more of the balance due load than it has. Her program letter for this processing year was pretty firm on that point.
LieutenantBlantyre  
#777 Posted : Saturday, March 30, 2019 1:07:16 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: gardenia Go to Quoted Post
I’m in Dallas. IMF. They act like the house is on fire all day every day. Constantly complaining about not meeting level of service. Don’t want anyone going to the restroom on the hour or half hour. This despite people sitting available on tax law. I don’t get it. I usually feel management is there solely to make us miserable. I’m going on furlough this year. With or without unemployment.


It isn't that we're not meeting Level of Service. It is that we're not meeting staffing requirements. The 35 day shutdown damaged the agency overall on staffing as some people simply never came back. Cleveland is quite a bit below where it should be on staffing levels at this time of the year compared to last year, for example.

For expected call levels from Planning & Analysis we're supposed to staff a planned number of CSRs. For most sites that planned number of CSRs is more than the number of CSRs employed at each site right now. The expected call numbers from the higher analysts have proven quite wrong this year since we haven't gotten the flood of tax law traffic that was expected and we've been able to repeatedly take campus CSRs off to do inventory at this time of the year. Last year we couldn't.

LieutenantBlantyre  
#778 Posted : Saturday, March 30, 2019 1:10:08 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: RN94509 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: gardenia Go to Quoted Post
I’m in Dallas. IMF. They act like the house is on fire all day every day. Constantly complaining about not meeting level of service. Don’t want anyone going to the restroom on the hour or half hour. This despite people sitting available on tax law. I don’t get it. I usually feel management is there solely to make us miserable. I’m going on furlough this year. With or without unemployment.


They can route calls to where they want them.

Honestly my time in BMF accounts management was a nightmare. They micro-managed everything. No wrap, no cell phones on the desk. Dont take vacation below 20 hours(that's right). If during a call they see you looking at or even have it on the desktop something other than what's needed for the call it's a issues: and this includes work emails.

Acs is completely different. AM is the worst job at the IRS. However SBSE ACS seems to be a lot better


BMF AM is increasingly getting consolidated down. Unless you were at Cincinnati you were west of the Mississippi. Things are changing pretty fast on the IMF side with all the moving targets we've had lately. We've had to have prints of the latest alerts to be able to reference simply because too many windows of Internet Explorer can & will make your computer crash.
LieutenantBlantyre  
#779 Posted : Saturday, March 30, 2019 1:14:00 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: gardenia Go to Quoted Post
I second that AM is the worst job in the IRS. Some of the stuff they get away with is unbelievable. Then they ask in the meetings for suggestions on how to improve morale!


At least it isn't just us in Cleveland. Things will have to change as we're not going to be able to keep this running the way it is. Boosting morale for us can start with simple things like having clean bathrooms and more thoroughly locking down our space in the federal building we're found in. We don't control access to the bathrooms on our floors as they're in "public access" areas and they get trashed/destroyed constantly. We shouldn't have any "public access" space on our floors at all.
LieutenantBlantyre  
#780 Posted : Sunday, April 7, 2019 6:05:24 PM(UTC)
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Well, we've got a little over 5 months but nobody is writing appropriations bills on Capitol Hill right now. Oh, wait, they're still screwing around on a supplemental bill for disaster funds for Puerto Rico. That bill only first came up in December.

Commissioner Rettig is heading up there to get yelled at by the Financial Services and General Government subcommittee on Tuesday. For those who are bored, a copy of the livestream will be on YouTube.

And as for the request by Ways & Means, I suspect all they're going to get are some sanitized MFTRAX prints and sanitized AMDISA prints. I think that would technically meet the requirements of what they're looking for. Then again, maybe they'll get exactly what they requested yet have no idea what to do with it.
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