(Gray News) – A White House official said Monday that tax refunds “will go out” even though the IRS is closed under the partial government shutdown.
The Treasury Department, which oversees the IRS, is one of nine federal agencies that have been shuttered since the shutdown began on Dec. 22.
But the acting director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, Russel Vought, said that wouldn’t stop the IRS from issuing refunds.
“Tax refunds will go out,” Vought said, according to Bloomberg.
With the opening of filing season just about a month away, and no end to the shutdown impasse in sight, the White House determined the IRS could legally issue funds.
In the past, the agency would accept returns during a government shutdown, but withhold refunds until it was once again fully funded and operating. It was unclear what the White House’s legal interpretation for the policy reversal was.
The IRS received more than 18 million tax filings last year in the first week of February. They generated more than six million refunds worth more than $12.5 billion.
President Donald Trump has vowed to veto any bill that would end the shutdown without funding a border wall.