Washington, DC – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD), a member of the Senate Finance Committee, renewed his call for comprehensive tax reform in the wake of the Committee’s hearing “Complexity and the Tax Gap: Making Tax Compliance Easier and Collecting What’s Due.” Senator Cardin stressed the need to make the tax code simpler, to eliminate unfair loopholes for special interests, and to encourage economic growth—all of which would increase compliance with tax rules.
“Congress must act to restore confidence in our tax code and make filing tax returns less burdensome on the American people and small businesses. A result of the complexity of our system is a $300 billion tax gap—the difference between the amount of taxes owed and taxes paid. Such noncompliance stems, in part, from confusion, ignorance, or carelessness due to the complexity of the tax code. The U.S. tax code is so complex that about 85 percent of individual taxpayers rely on some form of assistance in preparing their taxes. Yet, the Government Accountability Office found that many of the tax preparers they studied made errors on returns. Simplifying the tax code will help close the tax gap, also ensuring that some people or corporations do not receive unfair advantages. The sheer volume of special provisions in our current tax code makes this a potentially daunting task.”