The Joint Committee's attorneys and accountants are involved in every aspect of the tax legislative process and thus are uniquely positioned to influence federal tax policy. As highly skilled, nonpartisan legal professionals, they work closely with the staffs of the House and Senate tax-writing committees to design and implement legislative solutions to some of the nation's most pressing problems, including stimulating the economy, reforming the Alternative Minimum Tax, and reforming the nation's health care system.
The Committee's work often includes, among other things, serving as an important resource to members of Congress, their staffs and the general public on present law and policy alternatives, drafting background pamphlets for congressional hearings, meeting with executive branch officials responsible for implementing changes in the tax laws, and assisting with and conducting investigations. Our legal professionals also draft detailed mark-up documents, which are used as the basis for consideration of tax bills by the House and Senate tax-writing committees, and provide crucial assistance to Members and their staffs during committee mark-ups. In addition, Joint Committee lawyers and accountants work closely with Joint Committee economists in analyzing the possible behavioral and tax revenue implications of proposed changes in the federal tax laws. Joint Committee attorneys and accountants also serve as the principal drafters of all committee reports for tax legislation passed by the House or Senate tax-writing committees or by a House-Senate conference committee, and frequently draft technical explanations of committee-passed or congressionally enacted bills for which no formal committee report has been produced. Legal and tax practitioners, taxpayers, courts of law, and executive branch officials frequently rely heavily on our work product in determining how best to interpret the nation's tax laws.
The Committee generally hires attorneys and accountants with a strong academic record and four or more years of federal tax experience either with a private law or accounting firm or in a federal government tax position, though many of our professionals have significantly more experience when they join the staff. Our recent hires include partners and mid- to senior-level associates from major law and accounting firms, experienced attorneys from the IRS Office of Chief Counsel, and in-house tax professionals from major U.S. companies.
Because the Joint Committee Staff is nonpartisan, our attorneys and accountants are able to assist both the majority and minority parties in the House and Senate, which better enables us to analyze issues from every angle and to provide continuity throughout the legislative process. Therefore, our professionals must be able to maintain strict confidentiality to ensure that the Joint Committee Staff continues to enjoy a high level of trust from both sides of the political aisle and both houses of Congress.