Want your filing question answered? It’s going to cost you $1.9 billion more next year.

That’s the word from the National Treasury Employees Union, the organization representing 150,000 IRS employees.

“NTEU shares Commissioner Koskinen’s concern about the agency’s ability to recruit and retain new and diverse workers. The hiring freeze is discouraging to applicants with the skills and education the agency needs,” union president Colleen Kelley says in a news release.

NTEU-14-Obama-McCaskill-signs

IRS campaigning for Democratic candidates in Missouri.

“The answer to ending the staffing crisis now and in the future is adequate funding. Congress must give the IRS the resources it needs to fulfill its mission—and the biggest resource of all is employees.”

The union says it supports the Obama administrations proposed 17 percent funding increase for the agency — to $12.9 billion annually.

The IRS claims it is ignoring 60 percent of calls from taxpayers because the agency doesn’t have enough personnel.

Interestingly, Koskinen says if the IRS doesn’t receive its desired $1.9 billion increase, “the government will lose $2 billion this year in money it would otherwise have been able to collect if it had better staffing,” according to the Washington Times.

That makes it essentially a wash.

But that increase in funding and personnel would, of course, result in an increase in dues-paying members to the NTEU.

“The hiring freeze the IRS implemented to cope with reckless budget cuts imposed by Congress for five years in a row is hurting all taxpayers. It is also making it virtually impossible for the IRS to hire new workers to replace experienced and retiring employees,” according to Kelley.

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