SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) – Most Internal Revenue Service (IRS) employees have been working from home, but starting this week thousands will head back to their offices.

A memo went out saying all employees must wear a face masks if they do return, but they have to bring their own because some agency offices haven’t received protective gear yet or have limited supplies.

Employees were advised to make their own out of t-shirts or cloth.

The IRS also offered incentive pay for those who return to work including a 10% increase in base salary for at least the next four weeks.

Those who have to report to a mailroom have been deemed higher risk so they will get a 25% boost, according to the group that represents about 30,000 non-union IRS workers.

Apparently, mail has been piling up since the work-from-home order went into effect.

The agency has mostly stopped answering taxpayers’ phone calls, especially about stimulus checks, and stopped processing paper returns.

However, many employees have been working from home during the outbreak as Congress has added to the agency’s workload.

Not only is it the middle of tax season, now extended until July 15, but agency employees are tasked with sending out stimulus payments as well.

So far the IRS has sent out 88 million payments.

Union leaders are working to ensure offices are disinfected and protective masks are provided.

Those who have been working from home successfully will likely stay there.

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