1/22/21

A potential $3,200 or more in stimulus money is why many between 17 and 24 should file taxes early this year

Many taxpayers who were eligible for stimulus checks either didn't receive any or didn't get the correct amounts. 

About 13 million young people aged 17 to 24 who were listed as dependents on their family's taxes were not eligible to receive stimulus money, based on last year's tax returns for 2019.

If dependents between 17 and 24 and some older file a tax return and won't be claimed as a dependent for 2020 taxes due this year, they should receive $1,200, plus $600, plus whatever comes next, likely $1,400, for a total of $3,200.

The $1,400 may turn into $2,000 by the time the stimulus law passes, or it may be less, but political promises were made during the election which should limit lower amounts.

Filing taxes early could speed up delivery on any additional stimulus coming later.

1/7/21

2021 Federal Income Tax Deadlines

Important Due Dates for Filing Your 2020 Tax Return and Payments;

Monday, January 11, 2021 is the deadline for employees who earned more than $20 in tip income in December 2020 to report to their employers.

The deadline to pay tax year 2020 fourth-quarter estimated tax payments is January 15, 2021. 

Employers have until Monday, February 1, 2021 to send out W-2 forms for 2020 employee earnings as well as most 1099 forms reporting for non-employee compensation, independent contractors and distributions from retirement plans.

Financial institutions must also mail mortgage, student loan, bank interest, dividends, Form 1099-B relating to sales of stock, bonds, or mutual funds, Form 1099-S for real estate transactions and Form 1099-MISC before Monday, February 1, 2021.

Monday, February 1, 2021 is also the deadline for catching up on unpaid fourth-quarter estimated taxes without additional penalties.

Healthcare Insurance Marketplace Form 1095-A should be mailed no later than mid-February and may be available in individual accounts at HealthCare.gov as soon as mid-January.

The deadline for farmers and fishermen to file individual income tax returns is Tuesday, March 2, 2021. 

Partnership and S corporation returns (IRS Forms 1065 and 1120-S respectively) are due Monday, March 15, 2021. The extended deadline is Sept. 15, 2021.

2020's personal income tax return tax return deadline is Thursday, April 15, 2021.

C corporation income tax returns (IRS Forms 1120) operating on a calendar year are due April 15, 2021. The extended deadline is Oct. 15, 2021. 

For C and S corporations operating on a fiscal year (non-calendar), the deadline is the 15th day of the fourth month following the end of the corporation's year end. (IRS Forms 1120 and 1120-S)

12/21/20

On FICO Scores and Building, Repairing and Maximizing Credit scores

Credit scores are designed to measure default risk.  Understanding how the lending industry determines creditworthiness can accelerate building, rebuilding or maximizing borrowing ability and financial stability.

A credit report details residence, credit and payment activity for the previous seven to ten years.  A FICO (Fair Isaac Corporation) score is a mathematical measurement of the likelihood of debt repayment.  FICO (or ‘Beacon’) scores vary based on data from three main credit bureaus, Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion, depending on how each bureau analyzes data.

Higher scores indicate lower credit risk.  Mortgage scores are between 300 and 850, but most FICO bankcard and auto scores are between 250 and 900.   Generally, those with high FICO scores consistently pay bills on time, keep balances low on credit cards and other accounts and apply for new credit only as needed.

Collateral, Capital, Capacity and Character measure credit risk and determine credit scores;

1. Collateral:  The value of an asset which lenders can repossess in lieu of payment.

2. Capital:  Accessible financial wealth to repay debt including checking, savings accounts and equity in relatively liquid, 'sellable', available assets.

3. Capacity:  Ability to repay measured by income, banking and employment history.  Rising income and steady employment is better than higher debt and uneven work and earning histories.

4. Character:  A credit score and report review to predict trustworthiness.  Have both a savings account and pay bills with a checking account.  Have credit accounts and manage them responsibly.

FICO doesn't disclose exact credit score calculation formulas, but does disclose the following weightings:

1. Payment History = 35%;  Responsibly managing financial accounts and timely payments leads to higher scores.  Consumers without credit cards, checking and saving accounts tend to appear to be higher risk to lenders than those who've maintained assets, managed debt and dealt with the financial industry responsibly over time.  Making payments on time has the greatest effect on improving scores.  The longer bills are paid on time over time, the better the score.  

Delinquent payments negatively impact scores.  The presence of bankruptcy, liens, judgments, settlements, charge offs, repossessions, foreclosures and late payments harm scores.  

The impact of past problems fades as time passes and more recent better payment patterns appear, the higher scores should rise.  Paid off collection accounts usually stay on a report for seven years, but older problems count less than recent issues.  

Working with a retailer or business who may provide credit on a purchase regardless of credit standing can help.  Consider a secured credit card or a secured loan to repair damaged credit.  Most financial institutions will provide a credit card or a loan in exchange for a sum of money deposited with them until the loan is paid in full.  

2. Debt Burden = 30%;  A measure of a number of financial metrics; Debt to limit ratio, number of accounts with balances, amount owed across different types of accounts and amounts paid down on loans.  High outstanding debt relative to available credit can affect a report and score.

Rebuilding or increasing the ability to finance or refinance purchases with lower interest rates and payments begins with checking the data used to calculate reports.  Confirm amounts owed, interest rates charged and check for errors.  If a credit report correctly shows missed payments, get and stay current.  As long as a report is ordered from a credit agency or authorized organization, requesting credit reports won't affect scores.  Credit agencies are required to provide credit history information correctly, completely and confidentially.  Reports can be obtained without expense www.annualcreditreport.com.   Free credit reports can be reviewed three times per year if requests are alternated between www.transunion.com, www.equifax.com and www.experian.com

Apply for and open new credit accounts slowly, only as needed and responsibly pay them off.  If managing credit for a short time, don't open a lot of new accounts too rapidly.  Rapid account buildups by new credit users can be seen as risky to lenders.  New accounts lower average account age and has a larger effect on scores for those with little credit history.

As such a large part of a FICO score is determined by the ratio of credit used to credit available, one way to increase scores is to increase the credit limits on current credit card accounts.  The higher the credit limit on credit cards and revolving credit accounts, the lower the utilization ratio of total available credit.  Higher limits on existing credit lines can help a credit score.  Try to keep balances low relative to credit limits by staying at least 30% away from available limits.  When practical, pay off debt instead of moving it around.

Remove incorrect credit report information by disputing errors;  If a error is found, send requests for correction by certified mail with phone follow up to the reporting creditor and all three reporting agencies.  If a collection is paid or a debt is settled, ask the creditor to delete the credit report item, instead of a “paid collection” entry.  Document dates, phone numbers, times, names and titles of everyone spoken to etc...  Ask for written confirmation of corrections and a Universal Data Form (UDF), documents consumers and lenders can send to credit bureaus to update reports.  Also send confirmations and UDFs to all creditors, as interest rates on other accounts may have increased even if not related to erroneously reported entries.

3. Credit History = 15%;  Timely paying on credit card and installment loans raises credit scores. 

Pay bills on time by setting up payment reminders prioritizing paying down principal of the highest interest debt first while maintaining minimum payments on other accounts with lower rates.  Don't open unneeded credit cards to increase available credit.  For newer credit users, rapid account buildups can appear riskier to lenders.  Newer accounts usually lower average account age, which affects scores for consumers with little other credit history.  Lenders consider average age relative to the oldest accounts.  The older the average age of the total number of accounts, the better the score. Don't close unused credit cards or open unnecessary accounts to increase available credit, as doing so could lower credit scores.

4. Credit Type = 10%;  Financial institutions look for a positive history of managing different types of installment, revolving, consumer finance and mortgage accounts. 

5. Recent Credit Search History = 10%;  Too many recent 'hard' credit inquiries, when consumers apply for credit or a loan, especially if done in large numbers over too long of a time frame can hurt scores.  

Search for credit in a relatively short time frame.  Looking for mortgage, auto or student loans may cause multiple lenders to request reports for only one loan.  Credit Bureaus consider inquiries falling in a typical shopping period as just one inquiry.  FICO's model considers auto loan inquiries within two weeks as only one and will likely not meaningfully decrease scores.  Generally, most scoring systems ignore credit inquiries within thirty days while shopping and don’t consider multiple inquiries a negative after 12 months.

Have as much fun as soon as possible, with the least amount of risk for as long as you can.

11/25/20

Guilford County Covid Charts as of 11/24/2020; Highest Seven Day Average New Cases, Hospitalizations and Positive Tests by Age and Death

 Highest Seven Day Average New Cases;

https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article241168731.html


New Cases per day;


Hospitalizations;

https://www.guilfordcountync.gov/our-county/human-services/health-department/coronavirus-covid-19-info/covid-19-data

Most Positive Tests are Low Risk Individuals;

https://www.guilfordcountync.gov/our-county/human-services/health-department/coronavirus-covid-19-info/covid-19-data

Death by Age is skewed to those getting infected less, relative to the rates of younger individuals, but that may change after Thanksgiving congregations;


Previously;

10/30/20; Guilford County, North Carolina Covid-19 Cases Spiking


10/16/20; Guilford County and North Carolina Total Covid-19 Cases and Deaths YTD; What may likely happen next


4/29/2020 Links etc...; COVID-19, Social Unrest, Central Banks, Demand Shift, Bailouts etc...


April 15, 2020; COVID-19 severity thoughts based on monthly global temperatures compared to 1918-1919


4/11/20; COVID-19; Homeowners with federally backed loans can skip mortgage payments for up to a year, regardless of what their banks say"


Monday, March 23, 2020; High blood pressure and Covid-19 with links etc... Guilford County NC at 11 cases


Tuesday, February 25, 2020; February 2020 Stuff; Corona Virus, Bloomberg, Covid-19 Economics, Healthcare, Bernie Sanders and some fun etc...


11/18/20

Soybean Pop = Food Price Inflation; Lumber, Corn, Beef, Milk and Rhodium up Big

 

https://tradingeconomics.com/commodity/soybeans

The soybean or soya bean (Glycine max)[3] is a species of legume native to East Asia, widely grown for its edible bean, which has numerous uses.

Traditional unfermented food uses of soybeans include soy milk, from which tofu and tofu skin are made. Fermented soy foods include soy sauce, fermented bean paste, nattō, and tempeh. Fat-free (defatted) soybean meal is a significant and cheap source of protein for animal feeds and many packaged meals. For example, soybean products, such as textured vegetable protein (TVP), are ingredients in many meat and dairy substitutes.

...Soybean is the most important protein source for feed farm animals (that in turn yields animal protein for human consumption).

...Soybeans are a globally important crop, providing oil and protein. In the United States, the bulk of the harvest is solvent-extracted with hexane, and the "toasted" defatted soymeal (50% protein) then makes possible the raising of farm animals (e.g. chicken, hog, turkey) on a large industrial scale.

...Soybeans are the most valuable agricultural export of the United States.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soybean#:~:text=The%20soybean%20or%20soya%20bean,and%20tofu%20skin%20are%20made.
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Thursday, December 1, 2016; Toblerone chocolate bars are now 10% smaller, comment and links

https://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2016/12/toblerone-chocolate-bars-are-now-10.html

When the US dollar goes up, the price of oil goes down, as oil is priced in US dollars...

http://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2016/11/when-us-dollar-goes-up-price-of-oil.html

https://tradingeconomics.com/commodity/corn

Can stability destabilize?

http://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2016/11/can-stability-destabilize.html

https://tradingeconomics.com/commodity/beef

Excerpt excerpt of what our future holds

http://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2016/10/excerpt-excerpt-of-what-our-future-holds.html

https://tradingeconomics.com/commodity/milk

https://tradingeconomics.com/commodity/rhodium

8/3/14; "Chaos is breaking out simultaneously in many regions"

https://hartzman.blogspot.com/2014/08/chaos-is-breaking-out-simultaneously-in.html

5/24/14; "The Math That Predicted The Revolutions Sweeping The Globe"

https://hartzman.blogspot.com/2014/02/the-math-that-predicted-revolutions.html

3/28/14; "The Government Inflation Scam"

https://hartzman.blogspot.com/2014/03/the-government-inflation-scam.html

The Taylor rule and how out of whack the Federal Reserve made our economy

http://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2016/10/the-taylor-rule-and-how-out-of-whack.html

"...The US is spiraling down into financial, economic and political collapse...,"

http://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2016/08/the-us-is-spiraling-down-into-financial.html

"Helicopter money" = Default

http://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2016/07/helicopter-money-default.html

"We are heading for a crisis that will be exponentially worse than 2008"

http://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2016/06/we-are-heading-for-crisis-that-will-be.html

"The Keynesians Stole The Jobs"

http://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2016/06/the-keynesians-hillary-clinton.html

The only way a system that looks like this could be kept running is by issuing more debt.

http://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2015/11/the-only-way-system-that-looks-like.html

11/16/20

"This Special Fraud Alert highlights the fraud and abuse risks associated with the offer, payment, solicitation, or receipt of remuneration relating to speaker programs by pharmaceutical and medical device companies"

"..The company generally pays the speaker HCP an honorarium, and often pays remuneration (for example, free meals) to the attendees. In the last three years, drug and device companies have reported paying nearly $2 billion to HCPs for speaker-related services.

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) and Department of Justice (DOJ) have investigated and resolved numerous fraud cases involving allegations that remuneration offered and paid in connection with speaker programs violated the anti-kickback statute.

The Federal government has pursued civil and criminal cases against companies and individual HCPs involving speaker programs. These cases alleged, for example, that drug and device companies: 

- selected high-prescribing HCPs to be speakers and rewarded them with lucrative speaker deals (e.g., some HCPs received hundreds of thousands of dollars for speaking);

- selected high-prescribing HCPs to be speakers and rewarded them with lucrative speaker deals (e.g., some HCPs received hundreds of thousands of dollars for speaking);

- held speaker programs at entertainment venues or during recreational events or otherwise in a manner not conducive to an educational presentation (e.g., wineries, sports stadiums, fishing trips, golf clubs, and adult entertainment facilities);

-held programs at high-end restaurants where expensive meals and alcohol were served (e.g., in one case, the average food and alcohol cost per attendee was over $500); and invited an audience of HCP attendees who had previously attended the same program or HCPs’ friends, significant others, or family members who did not have a legitimate business reason to attend the program. 

This Special Fraud Alert highlights some of the inherent fraud and abuse risks associated with the offer, payment, solicitation, or receipt of remuneration related to company-sponsored speaker programs.

...Numerous investigations have involved allegations that drug and device companies organize and pay for speaker programs with the intent to induce HCPs to prescribe or order (or recommend the prescription or ordering of) the companies’ products. Speaker programs typically involve an HCP who is not an employee of the company speaking in person to other HCPs about a company product or disease state using a presentation developed and approved by the company. 

...OIG is skeptical about the educational value of such programs. Our investigations have revealed that, often, HCPs receive generous compensation to speak at programs offered under circumstances that are not conducive to learning or to speak to audience members who have no legitimate reason to attend. Such cases strongly suggest that one purpose of the remuneration to the HCP speaker and attendees is to induce or reward referrals.

Furthermore, studies have shown that HCPs who receive remuneration from a company are more likely to prescribe or order that company’s products.

This remuneration to HCPs may skew their clinical decision making in favor of their own and the company’s financial interests, rather than the patient’s best interests. 

...OIG has significant concerns about companies offering or paying remuneration (and HCPs soliciting or receiving remuneration) in connection with speaker programs. Based on our investigations and enforcement actions, this remuneration is often offered or paid to induce (or solicited or received in return for) ordering or prescribing items paid for by Federal health care programs. If the requisite intent is present, both the company and the HCPs may be subject to criminal, civil, and administrative enforcement actions."

https://oig.hhs.gov/fraud/docs/alertsandbulletins/2020/SpecialFraudAlertSpeakerPrograms.pdf

11/15/20

City of Greensboro Crime Statistics Week Ending 11/08/2020; Homicides up 34% Year over Year; No Year over Year Traffic Fatalities or Overdose information; Links etc...

 

https://www.greensboro-nc.gov/departments/police/crime-data/weekly-crime-data

No Year over Year Traffic Fatalities or Overdose information.
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Friday, October 16, 2020; Guilford County and North Carolina Total Covid-19 Cases and Deaths YTD; What may likely happen next

https://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2020/10/guilford-county-and-north-carolina.html

4/29/2020 Links etc...; COVID-19, Social Unrest, Central Banks, Demand Shift, Bailouts etc...

https://hartzman.blogspot.com/2020/04/4292019-latest-stuff-covid-19-social.html

Corruption of Greensboro's political system
has negatively influenced our region's economic performance
through legislation, budget appropriation and over-taxation
to benefit a few at the expense of many.

Saturday, January 26, 2019; Anatomy of a duped taxpayer base; Population and earnings for Durham and DPAC compared to Greensboro and STPAC

https://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2019/01/anatomy-of-duped-taxpayer-base.html

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America

The City of Greensboro raised property taxes by 7.5% in 2019, but most don't know, as our local media didn't tell anyone.

https://hartzman.blogspot.com/2020/11/the-city-of-greensboro-raised-property.html

10/30/20; Guilford County, North Carolina Covid-19 Cases Spiking

https://hartzman.blogspot.com/2020/10/guilford-county-north-carolina-covid-19.html

10/26/20; Links, Latest Stuff etc...

https://hartzman.blogspot.com/2020/10/latest-stuff.html

Financial (Investment) Plan Manipulation

https://hartzman.blogspot.com/2020/09/financial-investment-plans.html

On FICO Scores and Building, Repairing and Maximizing Credit scores

https://hartzman.blogspot.com/2020/09/on-fico-scores-and-building-repairing.html

10/20/20; Corporate Buybacks and Manipulated Financial Markets

https://hartzman.blogspot.com/2020/10/corporate-buybacks-and-manipulated.html

Sunday, February 9, 2020; Concerning the Wuhan Coronavirus; "1918 and SARS", from "What to Do Now, CPA Continuing Education Edition", 2003 Edition by George Hartzman

https://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2020/02/concerning-wuhan-coronavirus-1918-and.html

Tuesday, February 25, 2020; February 2020 Stuff; Corona Virus, Bloomberg, Covid-19 Economics, Healthcare, Bernie Sanders and some fun etc...

https://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2020/02/february-2020-stuff-corona-virus.html

"From Vietnam to Afghanistan etc..., US governments lie"

https://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2019/12/from-vietnam-to-afghanistan-etc-us.html

Monday, April 6, 2020; COVID-19; Homeowners with federally backed loans can skip mortgage payments for up to a year, regardless of what their banks say"

https://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2020/04/covid-19-homeowners-with-federally.html

Monday, October 12, 2020; Leon Black, worth $9 Billion+ from $7.8 Billion last year, who took Greensboro, Guilford County and High Point for more than $1,000,000 in taxpayer funded handouts via Fresh Market, moved at least $50 million to Jeffrey Epstein

https://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2020/10/leon-black-worth-78-billion-who-took.html

Voting for the lesser of two evils compromises moral values, condones our Oligarch's shoddy treatment of millions of consumers and sabotages needed structural change

https://greensboroperformingarts.blogspot.com/2020/11/voting-for-lesser-of-two-evils.html


11/5/20

The City of Greensboro raised property taxes by 7.5% in 2019, but most don't know, as our local media didn't tell anyone.

Greensboro raised vehicle taxes by 300% in 2016, a $20 increase for every car in every household, while they raised recycling by $2.50 a month, which was another $30 tax increase per household, while Water and Sewer rates increased by four percent, or an average of $1.81 per month, or 21.72 per year.

The City of Greensboro and Guilford County have been making poor people pay more so the wealthy pay less as a percentage of income, and they have been doing it for years.

Greensboro's poorest don't know they got the shaft, just like the time before, and the time before that, from a City Council who reap revenue on regressive taxation of the poor 

Legal theft this is, from the poor for the benefit of the rich. They just roll with it as the press and friends are so financially illiterate, they can't figure it out enough to inform the majority of Greensboro's public of the scam.

If you made $100,000, and your taxes went up $62 or 0.0062% of your income, a tenth of one percent of your income.

If you made $50,000, and your taxes went up $62 or 0.0124% of your income, it cost more than a tenth of one percent of your income.

If you made $30,000, and your taxes went up $62, or 0.02066% of your income, it cost more than a two tenths of one percent of your income.

If you made $20,000, and your taxes went up $62 or 0.031% of your income, it cost more than a three tenths of one percent of your income.

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'Regressive Tax'

A tax that takes a larger percentage from low-income people than from high-income people.

A tax that takes a larger percentage of the income of low-income people than of high-income people.

...it hits lower-income individuals harder.

Sales taxes...are generally considered to be regressive ...because expenses for food, clothing and shelter tend to make up a higher percentage of a lower income consumer's overall budget.

...even though the tax may be uniform (such as 7% sales tax), lower income consumers are more affected by it because they are less able to afford it.

...a regressive tax imposes a greater burden (relative to resources) on the poor than on the rich — there is an inverse relationship between the tax rate and the taxpayer's ability to pay as measured by assets, consumption, or income.

Regressive taxes tend to reduce the tax incidence of people with higher ability-to-pay, as they shift the incidence disproportionately to those with lower ability-to-pay.

10/30/20

Guilford County, North Carolina Covid-19 Cases Spiking

Guilford County reported 189 new cases October 30 and 205 new cases the day before. Data begins on April 15, 2020 with 10 deaths;

Guilford County, North Carolina Covid-19 New Cases Per Day

https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article241168731.html

It took 36 days to reach 50 deaths on 5/21/2020 from 10 on 4/15/2020, 28 days to 100 deaths on June 19, 46 days to 150 in Summer on August 4, and 78 days to hit 200 deaths on October 22. Most of the mortality is concentrated on higher age populations;

Guilford County Total Deaths

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Hopefully, now that we should know more on protecting the elderly and infirmed, deaths should not spike at the same rate as cases, due to 68% of those getting infected are under age 60;

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10/16/20; Guilford County and North Carolina Total Covid-19 Cases and Deaths YTD; What may likely happen next


April 15, 2020; COVID-19 severity thoughts based on monthly global temperatures compared to 1918-1919


10/16/20

Guilford County and North Carolina Total Covid-19 Cases and Deaths YTD; What may likely happen next

 Guilford County Covid-19

Total Cases;

https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article241168731.html

Total Deaths;

https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article241168731.html

Data back to September 26, 2020;

https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article241168731.html

Guilford County Deaths by Age;

https://www.guilfordcountync.gov/our-county/human-services/health-department/coronavirus-covid-19-info/covid-19-data



Pre Air Conditioning Days = US had uptick in hottest Summer weather

The influenza pandemic in 1918 and 1919 occurred in three waves, killing about 675,000 in the United States and between 20 to 100 million worldwide.

The first wave eased during the Summer of 1918, which looks to be similar to current COVID-19 events, taking the effect of 2020's Summer time air conditioning had into account. 

In the Autumn of 1918, the second biggest wave began, consistent with the onset of Winter/Flu Season in the Northern Hemisphere with lower humidity and temperatures. 

2020's Fall outbreak looks to be less severe than 1918, as Covid appears to leave younger patients with much fewer complications and morbidity, as well as better wide spread social distancing and elder seclusion.

The third wave hit in the first half of 1919, and by the summer the pandemic relatively ended as those that were infected either died or developed immunity.

COVID-19 “established significant community spread in cities and regions along a narrow east-west distribution roughly along the 30-50 North latitude corridor at consistently similar weather patterns (5-11 degrees C [41 to 51 F] and 47-79 percent humidity)";

https://www.accuweather.com/en/health-wellness/higher-temperatures-affect-survival-of-new-coronavirus-pathologist-says/700800

If known infections retard significantly enough as asymptomatic spread goes relatively undetected in warmer weather, a new wave could hit the areas around the yellow with reported infections spreading through next Fall/Winter/Flu season.

Dropping amounts of water vapor in cold, dry Winter air makes it easier for Covid to become airborne. 

30 year average temperatures between 1988-2018 October through May indicate when a larger second wave will likely occur. Areas around Yellow to Green are most likely to experience higher case loads.

October;

https://gvn.org/sars-cov-2-response-efforts/

November;


December;


January;


February;


March;


Covid-19 should start dissipating for North Carolina by April;


10/2/20

IRS "Dirty Dozen" Tax Scams

Scams put taxpayers at risk.

Consumers can help protect themselves by choosing a reputable tax preparer.

Phishing: Taxpayers should be alert to potential fake emails or websites looking to steal personal information. The IRS will never initiate contact with taxpayers via email about a bill or tax refund. Don’t click on one claiming to be from the IRS. Be wary of emails and websites that may be nothing more than scams to steal personal information.

Phone Scams: Phone calls from criminals impersonating IRS agents remain an ongoing threat to taxpayers. The IRS has seen a surge of these phone scams in recent years as con artists threaten taxpayers with police arrest, deportation and license revocation, among other things.

Identity Theft: Taxpayers should be alert to tactics aimed at stealing their identities, not just during the tax filing season, but all year long. The IRS, working in conjunction with the Security Summit partnership of state tax agencies and the tax industry, has made major improvements in detecting tax return related identity theft during the last several years. But the agency reminds taxpayers that they can help in preventing this crime. The IRS continues to aggressively pursue criminals that file fraudulent tax returns using someone else’s Social Security number.

Return Preparer Fraud: Be on the lookout for unscrupulous return preparers. The vast majority of tax professionals provide honest, high-quality service. There are some dishonest preparers who operate each filing season to scam clients, perpetuate refund fraud, identity theft and other scams that hurt taxpayers.

Inflated Refund Claims: Taxpayers should take note of anyone promising inflated tax refunds. Those preparers who ask clients to sign a blank return, promise a big refund before looking at taxpayer records or charge fees based on a percentage of the refund are probably up to no good. To find victims, fraudsters may use flyers, phony storefronts or word of mouth via community groups where trust is high.

Inflated Refund Claims: Taxpayers should take note of anyone promising inflated tax refunds. Those preparers who ask clients to sign a blank return, promise a big refund before looking at taxpayer records or charge fees based on a percentage of the refund are probably up to no good. To find victims, fraudsters may use flyers, phony storefronts or word of mouth via community groups where trust is high.

Falsely Padding Deductions on Returns: Taxpayers should avoid the temptation to falsely inflate deductions or expenses on their tax returns to pay less than what they owe or potentially receive larger refunds. Think twice before overstating deductions, such as charitable contributions and business expenses, or improperly claiming credits, such as the Earned Income Tax Credit or Child Tax Credit.

Fake Charities: Groups masquerading as charitable organizations solicit donations from unsuspecting contributors. Be wary of charities with names similar to familiar or nationally-known organizations. Contributors should take a few extra minutes to ensure their hard-earned money goes to legitimate charities. IRS.gov has the tools taxpayers need to check out the status of charitable organizations.

Excessive Claims for Business Credits: Avoid improperly claiming the fuel tax credit, a tax benefit generally not available to most taxpayers. The credit is usually limited to off-highway business use, including use in farming. Taxpayers should also avoid misuse of the research credit. Improper claims often involve failures to participate in or substantiate qualified research activities or satisfy the requirements related to qualified research expenses.

Offshore Tax Avoidance: Successful enforcement actions against offshore cheating show it’s a bad bet to hide money and income offshore. People involved in offshore tax avoidance are best served by coming in voluntarily and getting caught up on their tax-filing responsibilities.

Frivolous Tax Arguments: Frivolous tax arguments may be used to avoid paying tax. Promoters of frivolous schemes encourage taxpayers to make unreasonable and outlandish claims about the legality of paying taxes despite being repeatedly thrown out in court. The penalty for filing a frivolous tax return is $5,000.

Abusive Tax Shelters: Abusive tax structures including trusts and syndicated conservation easements are sometimes used to avoid paying taxes. The IRS is committed to stopping complex tax avoidance schemes and the people who create and sell them. The vast majority of taxpayers pay their fair share, and everyone should be on the lookout for people peddling tax shelters that sound too good to be true. When in doubt, taxpayers should seek an independent opinion regarding complex products they are offered.

IRS