Partnership for Public Service Awards IRS Executive for e-file, Electronic Tax Administration Work
IR-2005-111, Sept. 28, 2005
WASHINGTON — The Partnership for Public Service has awarded Internal Revenue Service Associate Chief Information Officer Terence Lutes with a Service to America Medal for his contributions to electronic tax administration and the IRS e-file program.
Lutes, who previously served as head of the Office of Electronic Tax Administration, has overseen the development of the e-file program, which has enabled millions of taxpayers to forego paper returns and file their taxes online.
“Electronic filing has fundamentally changed the way Americans pay taxes,” said IRS Commissioner Mark W. Everson. “Terry has done an exceptional job leading this effort, which makes filing tax returns more reliable and speeds refunds on their way to taxpayers.”
When Lutes became involved with the e-file program in 1996, some 15 million individual returns were filed electronically. Since then, e-file has grown dramatically. During the 2005 tax season, for the first time, more than half of all individual tax returns, approximately 68 million, were filed electronically.
E-file cuts in half the amount of time it takes to receive a refund from the IRS and, by automatically checking returns for common errors, e-file results in more accurate submissions. E-file has also sharply reduced the cost of tax return processing for the IRS –– by as much as 90 percent compared with the cost of processing a paper return.
While Lutes was in charge, the Office of Electronic Tax Administration won numerous awards for innovation in electronic product development, marketing campaigns and the IRS.gov website. Lutes was selected on five occasions as one of the 100 most influential individuals in the field of accounting by Accounting Today Magazine.
In his current position as associate CIO, Lutes continues to oversee e-file. In addition, he manages application development and has operational responsibility for IRS information technology systems. He also manages e-government strategy for the IRS. Lutes oversees 6,500 employees, 1,500 contractors and an annual budget of approximately $1.5 billion.
The Partnership for Public Service, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization, will present Lutes and eight other distinguished civil servants with Service to America medals at a ceremony today in Washington, D.C.