President Obama's Fiscal Year 2012 federal budget is an example of shoddy math and non-transparent government at work. The 2012 Federal Budget fiscal shell game is as curious for what items are included as for what Team Obama chose to exclude.
The FY12 Budget, on page 129, discusses the Administration’s admirable intent to crack down on businesses that are delinquent in paying taxes. This is a good idea. Team Obama then "proposes a suite of legislative and administrative debt collection reforms that will yield more than $5 billion of additional collections over the next 10 years from individuals and businesses that have failed to pay taxes." The government proposes doing this by hiring an additional 5,100 IRS workers. Bad idea.
The FY12 budget makes little effort at transparency and does not show the long-term cost of hiring new government workers. President Obama still doesn’t seem to understand that government can’t create jobs that grow the economy. Any job that the government creates comes at the cost of increased federal, state or local spending which, ultimately, has to be paid with tax dollars or borrowed money. Second, the President's budget focuses only on the revenue he believes will be recovered by these additional IRS workers rather than the cost of the recovery.
Let me peel back the onion on how the government works, and let's also consider the cost, since the President chose not to do so. Each federal worker is hired through the civil service or through a government contractor which provides employees to the federal government. Upon hiring, these new workers require training. Support and infrastructure for these employees is quite costly as these new employees need office space, furniture, phones, laptops.
Since IRS enforcement employees are often in the field, they also require extensive help desk support, supplies, and they incur travel costs. In addition, government employment comes with a generous compensation, benefits and retirement package. The total life cycle costs of the average government worker billed to the American taxpayer is about $3,200,000.00