State/Local Feed

Photo by Aidan Howe on Unsplash U.S. commercial gambling revenue hit a quarterly record of $17.67 billion in first three months of 2024. It marks the gaming industry’s 13th consecutive quarter of growth, according to the American Gaming Association. And Caitlin Clark hadn’t even played a Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA) game yet. Clark’s WNBA May 14 debut with her Indiana Fever facing the Connecticut Sun drew an average television audience of 2.13 million viewers, making it the most watched WNBA game in almost 23 years. I’m willing to bet, pun intended, that is also was the most bet on... Read more →


Photo by Karolina Grabowska The Internal Revenue Service is about to turn out the lights on the 2020 tax refund party. The chance to get your part of more than $1 billion in unclaimed tax money ends on Friday, May 17. The eligible refund recipients are an estimated 938,800 folks nationwide who didn’t, for a variety of reasons, file a 2020 tax return during the 2021 filing season. Tax law says nonfilers have three years to file and collect their refund money. So why didn’t their deadline come and go on this past April 15? You might recall that three... Read more →


Our annual property tax protest has been filed. Not by us. We finally hired a company to take care of it. But the hubby and I and our neighbors are not the only ones concerned about property taxes. So are the government officials in charge of levying and collecting them, albeit for different reasons. Property tax problems: Real estate taxes are the primary financing source for city, county, and other local governments. Tax Foundation analysts found that in fiscal year 2020, property taxes comprised 32.2 percent of total state and local tax collections in the United States, more than any... Read more →


Among the nearly 141.4 million tax returns that the Internal Revenue Service had received by the week ending April 26, were 140,803 Form 1040s that arrived via the tax agency's Direct File pilot program. The IRS and Treasury Department in separate releases said these Direct File taxpayers claimed more than $90 million in refunds, and saved an estimated $5.6 million in tax preparation fees on their federal returns alone. OK, those Direct File returns were a minuscule part — 0.09960386 percent — of the more than 141 million 1040s filed as of last month. But it’s a start. And it... Read more →


Those who enter the New York Criminal Courts building are greeted by Thomas Jefferson's words engraved on the façade. The third U.S. president cited "equal and exact justice to all men of whatever state or persuasion" as one of the essential principles of American democracy. (Photo by Carl Mikoy, Flickr Creative Commons) In September 2019, Donald J. Trump changed his official residence from New York to Florida. The then-president gave no official reason for the paperwork move. However, one reason likely was the Sunshine State’s lack of a personal income tax. Though Trump refused to release his federal or state... Read more →


Photo by Amina Filkins If National Small Business Week has you thinking about starting your own company, congratulations. You’ll be joining a growing sector of the U.S. economy. The Small Business Administration (SBA) describes a small business as one with fewer than 500 employees. That covers enterprises from one-person shops to manufacturing facilities with hundreds of workers. The U.S. Census Bureau’s Business Dynamics Statistics indicate there were 5,358,600 firms that met that definition in 2021, the latest year for complete data. That was an increase from 5,322,155 in 2020. But small really is key here. County Business Patterns (CBP) data... Read more →


Photo by Joshua Rodriguez on Unsplash It’s National Small Business Week 2024! Technically, the U.S. Small Business Administration’s annual recognition event started yesterday, Sunday, April 28. The kick-off yesterday of this year's National Small Business Week (NSBW) included an awards ceremony where this year’s National Small Business Person of the Year and runner-up were named, along with the Small Business Persons of the Year from each state, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico. The event, with a theme this year of Building on America’s Small Business Boom, continues through Saturday, May 4. Your small business taxes: The full... Read more →


Texas Severe Storms Association photo It’s spring here in Texas, which means storm season. We’ve already seen some recent storms drop large hail across the Lone Star State. Plus, residents along Texas’ 367 miles of Gulf of Mexico shoreline have got to be a bit on edge with forecasters’ already warning of a hyperactive 2024 hurricane season, which officially starts on June 1. Storm analysts at the University of Pennsylvania say we could see 33 named tropical storms this year. So the timing of Texas’ annual emergency preparation supplies sales tax holiday couldn’t be better. Weekend sales tax savings: Texas'... Read more →


Photo by Ahsanjaya You just got your federal tax refund it was not what you were expecting. In fact, it’s much less than the amount your Form 1040 calculations showed. What the heck happened? There are several reason why a refund amount could be less that amount on your filing. The most common smaller refund situations involve math errors in computing your tax bill, or the claiming of incorrect credits or deductions. In these cases, you should have heard from the Internal Revenue Service via a notice about the discrepancy. But another common reason your tax refund is much smaller... Read more →


Earth Day 2024 is tomorrow, April 22. But today is so nice — we finally got some rain, and the butterflies and hummingbirds are taking over our backyard — that I decided to celebrate a day early. This special day dedicated to the ecological issues facing our planet was first held on April 22, 1970. Back then, San Francisco activist John McConnell and Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson came up with the idea separately. But they agreed that Americans should join en masse in grassroots demonstrations to highlight environmental threats. McConnell wanted Earth Day events to happen on March 20, which... Read more →


April 15 was Tax Day for most of us. That included President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden, as well as Vice President Kamala Harris and Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff. When Biden and Harris took office, they reinstated the annual tradition of our country's top elected officials voluntarily releasing their tax filings. The 2023 tax year returns of the Bidens and Harris/Emhoff earn this weekend's Saturday Shout Out. You can see the details at the White House's official Tax Returns online page. In addition to this year's filings, there are links to the returns filed by the president and... Read more →


Photo by Ketut Subiyanto The Internal Revenue Service's big tax party was yesterday and you didn't RSVP. Not even by filing Form 4868 to get an extension to show up as much as six months later. In fact, you didn't attend the Tax Day soiree at all. Maybe you had a good reason for not filing a Form 1040 on April 15. Maybe you simply forgot. Or maybe you started your return and got discouraged. While the IRS won't take your failure to file your return and pay any tax you owe personally, the agency isn't going to overlook your... Read more →


Federal tax returns get most of the attention during the annual tax season. That's because Uncle Sam's individual income tax laws apply across the country. But state taxes also are demanded of most Americans. And in most of the 43 states and District of Columbia that tax some type of individual earnings, April 15 also is the due date. No individual income tax states: The only states with no personal income tax at all are Alaska, Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, and Wyoming. Tax savvy readers probably noticed that the Evergreen State is not on that list. That's because... Read more →


Millions of people will be celebrating on Monday, April 15. The arrival of Tax Day means they are done with dealing with the Internal Revenue Service for another year. For many others, however, it's just the beginning of another round of collections. The annual federal filing (and paying) deadline also is the start of the current year's estimated tax payment cycle. Extra payments for certain income: The U.S. tax system is pay as earn. That's taken care via paycheck withholding if you're an employee. But even if you have a job where income (federal and state, if applicable) tax is... Read more →


A fourth, and final, Taxpayer Assistance Center (TAC) Saturday opening is set for May 18. Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash The third round of special Taxpayer Assistance Center (TAC) Saturday openings is this weekend, April 13. But don't let the date confuse you. Just because Internal Revenue Service reps will be available to help taxpayers who live near the TACs open across the United States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico on April 13 doesn't mean the tax agency staff will help filers complete 2023 tax returns (or extension requests) due on Monday, April 15. They won't. These... Read more →


Updated Thursday, April 4, 2024 via GIPHY Tax Day is less than two weeks away, but some aren't sweating the April 15 filing deadline. They have more time to complete their tax paperwork and, in some cases, may any associated payments. Here's a look at the special situations where taxpayers have more time to file their federal tax returns. International, including military, taxpayers: When it comes to individual taxes, the tax code doesn't care where you live. If you're a U.S. citizen or resident alien, including those with dual citizenship, you must pay tax to Uncle Sam even if you're... Read more →


Daisies enjoying the result of an April shower. (Photo by Kay Bell) Tax Day is almost here, no fooling! We've readjusted, after the COVID-19 pandemic delays, to having Tax Day fall in the middle of this fourth month. This year, it's officially April 15 again for most of us. So filing our return or extension request by then obviously is a prime focus. But there are some other tax matters to consider or complete this April 2024. Here are six. 1. Finish (or start) your 2023 return. Tax Day is just 14 days away, and the Internal Revenue Service is... Read more →


The Nov. 20, 2023, landslide near Wrangell, Alaska. (Image courtesy Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities) Residents of Hawai'ian counties that were devastated by wildfires in 2023 got a bit a good news from the Internal Revenue Service last week. The tax agency now is giving them until Aug. 7 to complete some tax filing and payment tasks. Tribal Alaskans who sustained damages from severe storm-induced land- and mudslides also get more tax time. Their new tax deadline is July 15. As is the usual procedure, the IRS tax relief decisions follow official declarations by the Federal Emergency Management... Read more →


The Internal Revenue Service IRS is expected to process more than 160 million individual and business tax returns this filing season. Through March 15, the IRS had received nearly 71.6 million individual returns. Some taxpayers probably put off filing in the hopes that the Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act would be enacted by Tax Day. Several of its provisions could help both personal and business filers. Whether that will happen is still unclear, as the tax bill that cleared the House has hit a lot of speed bumps in the Senate. Other taxpayers, however, aren't that concerned... Read more →


Photo by Karolina Grabowska Millions of U.S. taxpayers are concentrating right now on their current tax return filing. But another sizeable group who didn't older returns also have some tax work to do. Almost 940,000 people across the nation have unclaimed refunds for tax year 2020. They missed out on that money because they didn't file a Form 1040 back in May 2021. They still have time to collect their part of the just more than $1 billion in old unclaimed refunds, but it's running out. The Internal Revenue Service says the median old, unclaimed refund amount from three years... Read more →