The IRS had originally planned on five furlough days (unpaid days off) this year. The first three went on as scheduled, the July 22nd furlough day was canceled somewhat at the last minute and turned into an optional work day, and now the final furlough day of the year (August 30th) is going to be postponed. According to IRS Acting Commissioner, Danny Werfel, the IRS recently found ways to save money and was able to cancel the July 22nd agency-wide furlough day. And the IRS hopes to be able to cancel the August 30th furlough too, but cannot make that determination at this time:
We have made substantial progress in cutting costs. … Our progress is such that we have decided to postpone the furlough day scheduled for Aug. 30. We still have more work to do on the budget and cost-savings, so we will reevaluate in early September and make a final determination as to whether we will need another furlough day in September.
Hopefully the IRS will continue to find ways to cut costs. Furloughs are not good for taxpayers because they make it very difficult for taxpayers to obtain the information they seek. Even if they are not calling on the exact date of the furlough, the backlog it creates on the other days is somewhat of a burden. Furloughs are obviously not good for IRS employees either. Even if they are ultimately canceled or postponed, the mere announcement of a furlough day tends to disturb the morale and confidence of employees.