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IRS Press Release

Special alert for benefit recipients who don’t file a tax return and have dependents

IR-2020-76, April 20, 2020

WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service today issued a special alert for several groups of federal benefit recipients to act by this Wednesday, April 22, if they didn’t file a tax return in 2018 or 2019 and have dependents so they can quickly receive the full amount of their Economic Impact Payment.

Their $1,200 payments will be issued soon and, in order to add the $500 per eligible child amount to these payments, the IRS needs the dependent information before the payments are issued. Otherwise, their payment at this time will be $1,200 and, by law, the additional $500 per eligible child amount would be paid in association with a return filing for tax year 2020.

Following extensive work by the IRS and other government agencies, $1,200 automatic payments will be starting soon for those receiving Social Security retirement, survivor or disability benefits (SSDI), Railroad Retirement benefits, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Veterans Affairs beneficiaries who didn’t file a tax return in the last two years. No action is needed by these groups; they will automatically receive their $1,200 payment.

For those benefit recipients with children who aren’t required to file a tax return, an extra step is needed to quickly add $500 per eligible child onto their automatic payment of $1,200.

For people in these groups who have a qualifying child and didn’t file a 2018 or 2019 tax return, they have a limited window to register to have $500 per eligible child added automatically to their soon-to-be-received $1,200 Economic Impact Payment. A quick trip to a special non-filer tool on IRS.gov by noon Eastern time, Wednesday, April 22, for some of these groups may help put all of their eligible Economic Income Payment into a single payment.

Have a child but don’t file a tax return? Visit IRS.gov now

Those receiving federal benefits – including Social Security retirement, survivor or disability benefits (SSDI), Railroad Retirement benefits, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Veterans Administration benefits – who have with children and who weren’t required file a tax return in 2018 or 2019 should visit the Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here tool on IRS.gov. By quickly taking steps to enter information on the IRS website about them and their qualifying children, they can receive the $500 per dependent child payment automatically in addition to their $1,200 individual payment. Otherwise, their payment at this time will be $1,200 and, by law, the additional $500 per eligible child amount would be paid in association with a return filing for tax year 2020.

First window affects SSA/RRB recipients with children; SSI and VA recipients have slightly more time to add $500 to automatic payments

For certain SSA / RRB beneficiaries who don’t normally file a tax return and do not register with the IRS by April 22, they will still be eligible to receive the separate payment of $500 per qualifying child. For those who miss the April 22 deadline, their payment at this time will be $1,200 and, by law, the additional $500 per eligible child amount would be paid in association with a return filing for tax year 2020. They will not be eligible to use the Non-Filer tool to add eligible children once their $1,200 payment has been issued.

SSI and VA beneficiaries have some additional time beyond April 22 to add their children since their $1,200 automatic payments will be made at a later date. SSI recipients will receive their automatic payments in early May, and the VA payment schedule for beneficiaries who receive Compensation and Pension (C&P) benefit payments is still being determined. If they have children and aren’t required to file a tax return, both groups are urged to use the Non-Filer tool as soon as possible. Once their $1,200 payment has been issued, they will not be eligible to use the Non-Filer tool to add eligible children. Their payment will be $1,200 and, by law, the additional $500 per eligible child amount would be paid in association with a return filing for tax year 2020.

No action needed by most taxpayers

The Treasury Department will make these automatic payments to SSA, SSI, RRB and VA recipients. Recipients will generally receive the automatic $1,200 payments by direct deposit, Direct Express debit card or by paper check, just as they would normally receive their benefits.

For information about Social Security retirement, survivors and disability insurance beneficiaries, please visit the SSA website at SSA.gov. For more information related to veterans and their beneficiaries who receive Compensation and Pension (C&P) benefit payments from VA, please visit VA.gov.

General IRS information about the Economic Impact Payments is available on a special section of IRS.gov.

Watch out for scams related to Economic Impact Payments The IRS urges taxpayers to be on the lookout for scams related to the Economic Impact Payments. There is no fee required to receive these payments.

Urgent: Social Security News Release

Social Security Administration News Release

Act Now – Go to IRS.gov – A Message from Social Security Commissioner Andrew Saul

Action Needed for Social Security Beneficiaries with Dependents and Who Do Not File Tax Returns to Receive $500 Per Child Payment

“Social Security beneficiaries and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients who don’t file tax returns will start receiving their automatic Economic Impact Payments directly from the Treasury Department soon.  People receiving benefits who did not file 2018 or 2019 taxes, and have qualifying children under age 17, however, should not wait for their automatic $1,200 individual payment.  They should immediately go to the IRS’s webpage at www.irs.gov/coronavirus/non-filers-enter-payment-info-here and visit the Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here section to provide their information.  Social Security retirement, survivors, and disability insurance beneficiaries with dependent children and who did not file 2018 or 2019 taxes need to act by Wednesday, April 22, in order to receive additional payments for their eligible children quickly.  SSI recipients need to take this action by later this month; a specific date will be available soon.

By taking this proactive step to enter information on the IRS website about them and their qualifying children, they will also receive the $500 per dependent child payment in addition to their $1,200 individual payment.  If beneficiaries in this group do not provide their information to the IRS soon, their payment at this time will be $1,200.  People would then be required to file a tax year 2020 tax return to obtain the additional $500 per eligible child.

I urge Social Security and SSI recipients with qualifying children who do not normally file taxes to take action now.  Immediately go to IRS.gov so that you will receive the full amount of the Economic Impact Payments you and your family are eligible for.

People with Direct Express debit cards who enter information at the IRS’s website should complete all of the mandatory questions, but they may leave the bank account information section blank as Treasury already has their Direct Express information on file.

Additionally, any new beneficiaries since January 1, 2020, of either Social Security or SSI benefits, who did not file a tax return for 2018 or 2019, will also need to go to the IRS’s Non-Filers website to enter their information as they will not receive automatic payments from Treasury.”

# # #To get more Social Security news, follow the Press Office on Twitter @SSAPress.

ACC Leisure Services: News Release

ACC Leisure Services Announces Delay in Summer Camp and Pool Openings
(Athens, GA) After careful consideration, the Athens-Clarke County Leisure Services Department plans to open pools and splash pads the weekend of July 4, 2020 and hopes to begin all summer camps the week of July 6th. These dates have been identified with anticipation that Covid-19 conditions improve and will provide time to train our seasonal staff and prepare for summer activities. The health and safety of the Athens area community, including our campers and staff, is our utmost priority. 

“We understand how disappointing this delay in our summer camps and pools is for our community,” says Kent Kilpatrick, Director of the Leisure Services Department.  “We feel it is in the best interest of public health of the Athens-Clarke County community to make sure that we are prepared for the thousands of children who spend their summer with us. Our team will spend the month of June working to finalize preparations and be ready for a strong start in July.”

All individuals who are currently registered for summer camp or swim lessons in June will be given the option to register for any available July camp or swim session, or receive a full refund. 
The anticipated updated dates for aquatics facilities to be open are July 4 – August 2, 2020.  After pools close, Trail Creek Splash Pad will continue to be open on the weekends through Labor Day on Monday, September 7, 2020.For more information, please call 706-613-3800.

Census Day Is Here – Make It Count!

April 1, 2020 – Today is Census Day, the day that determines who is counted in the 2020 Census and where they are counted.

The U.S. Constitution mandates a census of the population every 10 years. Responding to the 2020 Census is easy, safe and important, and is key to shaping the future of communities. Census statistics are used to determine the number of seats each state holds in the U.S. House of Representatives and informs legislative district boundaries. They also inform how hundreds of billions of dollars in public funds are allocated by state, local and federal lawmakers to communities for public services and infrastructure like hospitals, emergency services, schools and bridges each year over the next 10 years.

36.2 percent of households across the nation have responded to the 2020 Census since invitations began arriving in mailboxes March 12-20. Response rates are updated in the map daily seven days a week so that the public can see how well their community is doing compared to the nation and other areas.

The Census Bureau is strongly encouraging the public to respond to the 2020 Census online using a desktop computer, laptop, smartphone or tablet. You can respond online or by phone in English or 12 other languages. There are also 59 non-English language guides and videos (plus American Sign Language) available on 2020census.gov ensuring over 99% of U.S. households can respond online in their preferred language. It has never been easier to respond on your own — all without having to meet a census taker. This is really important with the current health and safety guidance being provided by national, state and local health authorities.

When you respond:

  • Respond for where you live as of April 1 (Census Day).
  • Include everyone who usually lives and sleeps in your home as of April 1, even if they are staying somewhere else temporarily. This includes relatives, friends, roommates and anyone else who lives and sleeps in your home most of the time — even children under age five and babies born on or before April 1, even if they are still in the hospital.
  • Count college students where they live while attending school. If they live on campus in university/college housing such as dorms or fraternity/sorority houses, they will be counted by school officials and do not need to respond. However, if they live off campus in private housing or apartments, they should respond to the census on their own using their off-campus address even if they are currently staying elsewhere.
  • Find additional answers about “Who to Count” at 2020census.gov.

You can use the Census ID from your invitation or provide your address when you respond. Then, please make sure your friends, family and social networks know about the importance of responding and encourage them to complete their census. Responding now will minimize the need for a census taker to follow up and visit your home later this year.

Some households — in areas less likely to respond online — have already received a paper questionnaire along with their first invitation. Households that have not responded online or by phone will receive a paper questionnaire April 8-16. 

For more information, visit 2020census.gov.   

Please note: Based on continuing assessments of guidance from federal, state and local health authorities, the Census Bureau is suspending 2020 Census field operations for two additional weeks to April 15, 2020. The Census Bureau is taking this step to help protect the health and safety of the American public, Census Bureau employees, and everyone who will go through the hiring process for temporary census taker positions. The Census Bureau continues to evaluate all 2020 Census field operations, and will communicate any further updates as soon as possible.

The 2020 Census is open for self-response online at 2020Census.gov, over the phone by calling the number provided in your invitation, and by paper through the mail.

COVID-19 Information

As the COVID-19 health crisis continues across our nation, the Athens Housing Authority will provide updates to our residents and the public on steps we are taking to protect staff and residents during this time.  We must all remember that observing the rules of our community’s “new normal” are important to protect the health of all of us.

As of now, the Mayor and Commission of Athens-Clarke County have issued a “shelter in place” ordinance until April 7, 2020.  Please understand that this may be extended depending on health concerns facing our community.  Local COVID-19 information can be found at www.accgov.com/coronavirus.  Information on this site is updated several times a week.  During this time, Athens residents are asked to stay at home, though it is realized that many must still report to work.  Those individuals are asked to maintain social distancing and practice frequent handwashing. The ACC website also provides a list of what is considered an essential business.

Residents recently received letters in the mail advising them of several changes to contacting the AHA office, how to make rent payments, and calling in maintenance concerns.  Those changes include the following:

Do not come to the AHA Central Office unless requested to do so.  You may conduct business with the AHA in the following ways:

  • Rent may be paid online at  www.athenshousing.org by clicking on the online link.  If you do not currently have an online account, you will need to set one up.  Here are instructions for setting up your account. You may also pay rent by mail; or, place your check or money order in the drop box at the AHA office former drive-up window.
  • If you need to review or check your personal account information, please do this online at www.athenshousing.org and click on the pay online link.  Again, you will need to establish an online account if you do not already have one.
  • Changes in personal circumstances such as family composition, income, etc. that are required reporting should be sent by email to changes@athenshousing.org . You may also call to request a change form to be mailed to you or stop by the AHA drive-up window to obtain the form.
  • AHA staff will be calling Denney Tower, New Scattered West, and Comer residents with directions regarding upcoming Annual Re-exams in April.  Face-to-face interviews will not be conducted.
  • Most administrative employees will be working from home.  However, they will have full access to our computer systems, files and databases.
  • Maintenance staff are still on duty.  One telephone number will be used to call in work orders during the normal business day, nights, and/or weekends.  The telephone to use for maintenance concerns is (706) 425-5353.   To protect you and our staff, we will only be responding to a modified emergency work order list.  This list is a separate attachment with this news release. Please click on the attachment at the end of this news release. 
  • Please keep a safe social distance of 6 feet from maintenance staff throughout the completion of the work order process.  Our maintenance staff will be following safety procedures that may slow our response.  Please understand that the safety of all concerned is important to us.

Residents with children are aware that Governor Brain Kemp issued an Executive Order that all schools across the state would be closed until April 24, 2020.  Many teachers from the Clarke County School District are trying to continue learning through this time by offering lessons online.  Check with your child’s teacher by email for more information.  In addition, the CCSD web site has information regarding accessing resources for families.  Go to  www.clarke.k12.ga.us for more information.

Lastly, during this time of uncertainty, remember to check on older adult neighbors by telephone, email, or putting a note on the door.   

These are challenging times.  The AHA is trying to minimize the impact on our customers and we will all work to adapt to changing circumstances. Please check back to www.athenshousing.org for further updates over the coming weeks.

March Board of Commissioners Meeting

The regular meeting of the Athens Housing Authority Board of Commissioners will be held on Thurs., Mar. 30, 2017 at 4:30 p.m.  Immediately following, affiliated organizations, Athens Housing Redevelopment, Inc., Vanguard Housing Solutions, Inc., Athens Housing Ventures Fund, Inc, and Peter Street Partners, Inc., will meet.

All meetings are held in the Board Room of the Athens Housing Authority office located at 300 S. Rocksprings St., Athens GA.

 

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