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What, Me Worry?

April 6, 2009

Grassley says farmers shouldn’t worry about IRS verification
Friday, April 3, 2009, 1:50 PM
by Julie Harker
Farmers concerned about sharing income information for farm payment eligibility shouldn’t worry. That’s according to Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley, “It would be just the USDA contacting the IRS and saying is this farmer’s income above or below this level.”
A new prerequisite for farm payments is for producers to fill out an income form that their county FSA office sends to the IRS for verification, “If the IRS says your income’s above that level that’s a determination, do you get farm payments or not,” says Grassley.
Grassley says concerns about the USDA seeing every detail of a producer’s tax records is a non-issue because it’s not going to happen, “They wouldn’t need to know how much you gave to church, how much you, you know, spent on this or that.”
USDA previously did not have access to farmer’s IRS information. A Government Accountability Office report found nearly $50-Million in farm program payments were made last year to ineligible recipients. The 2008 Farm Bill does not allow payments to anyone with a taxable non-farm income over $500-thousand.

I can assure from talking to folks last weekend, people are worried. And given the fate of the CEO of General Motors, and the stories that the administration is not allowing TARP funds to be paid back, they’d rather maintain control over those banks, excuse me if I don’t place much stock in the word of a well meaning bureaucrat.

And don’t discount the issue of basic privacy. I now have to share how much money I make with the gossip queens that staff the local USDA offices? No thanks.

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From → Food Policy, Nation

One Comment
  1. Matthew permalink

    Unless you have something to hide, you shouldn’t have anything to fear.

    You just don’t love America do you?

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