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Opening Statement of Oversight Subcommittee Ranking Member John Lewis

May 8, 2013
Press Release


Oversight Subcommittee Oversight Subcommittee Hearing on the IRS’s

Colleges and Universities Compliance Project

Committee on Ways and Means

(Remarks as Prepared)

I thank the Chairman for holding this hearing.  Today, we will review the results of an Internal Revenue Service project on colleges and universities. 

Colleges and universities play an important role in our society.  They educate our young people and create our workforce for the future. 

I am honored to have many colleges and universities in my District.  We have wonderful institutions in Metro Atlanta – Spelman, Morehouse, Georgia State, Clark Atlanta, Georgia Tech, and Emory to name just a few.  They are training the next generation of scientists, doctors, and engineers.  They also provide many positive benefits to their local communities.

I understand that many colleges are large and complex organizations.  They have sports programs that enrich their student body and raise revenue for the university.  Many engage in activities, such as advertising and operating golf courses, that may generate income subject to federal tax.  The range of their activities is diverse.

I commend the Internal Revenue Service for taking a closer look at these organizations.  Projects like this are positive for both the agency and the universities.  They are a useful tool for educating each other.  

As we move toward tax reform, it is important that we all understand how colleges and universities operate and comply with the federal tax laws. 

The agency’s report helps us begin this process.  I look forward to hearing from our witness today.  I am pleased that she is here to discuss what the agency learned from this project. 

Thank you.