Federal and U.S. Postal Service workers nationwide, including congressional workers, owed $1.03 billion in unpaid taxes as of the end of fiscal 2010, Ed O'Keefe of The Washington Post has reported.
In total, 98,000 federal employees have not paid their full share to the Internal Revenue Service. Six hundred and eighty-four of those employees are congressional staffers owing a total of $10.6 million, a slight increase from the previous year, according to the Post.
Postal Service employees and civilian workers in the Defense Department owe the most. More than 30,000 Defense civilians owe a combined $265.1 million, the Post reported, and 25,640 postal workers owe a combined $269.6 million.
Additionally, 36 employees come from the Executive Office of the President and owe a total of $833,970.
Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, and Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., have authored bills that would force federal organizations to fire employees who purposefully avoid paying taxes, with the exception of those with extreme family circumstances or in dire financial situations. The bills are still working their way through Congress, though Chaffetz's was approved by a committee in 2011.
The Post quotes Chaffetz as saying the amount of federal unpaid taxes is "totally unacceptable and disrespectful to hard-working American taxpayers."
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this article misidentified civilian Defense employees as members of the armed forces.