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Update from State Sen. Steve Bieda

Sen. Bieda shares his thoughts from and updates from Lansing.

This update from Lansing comes to Patch from state Sen. Steven Bieda:

IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR TAX SEASON

Free Income Tax Services for Low and Middle Income Households:
The Accounting Aid Society will be offering professional tax services for lower income families throughout southeast Michigan for the tax season. Services include preparation of federal, state and local income taxes, and federal and state tax credits, such as the Home Heating Credit and the Homestead Property Tax Credit (both available, to renters and home owners). Another important credit, the Earned Income Tax Credit, is also prepared for those who are eligible.

Eligibility for Accounting Aid Society’s free tax preparation services is based on annual household income: $50,000 or less for families, and $25,000 or less for individuals. Those who are not working may still be eligible for some tax credits.

Accounting Aid Society will be offering help locally at the following location:

Center Line Senior Center, 25355 Lawrence Blvd., at 10 Mile and Van Dyke.
Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. through April 14.

Service is by appointment only and can be made by calling 1-866-673-0873 toll-free, or 313-556-1920.

For a complete list of tax site locations and the documents needed to take to a tax site, call toll-free 1-866-673-0873 or go to www.accountingaidsociety.org.

Free Tax Filing Services from the IRS:

Through IRS Free File, all taxpayers who made $57,000 or less in 2011 can visit http://www.irs.gov/freefile/ to prepare and e-file their federal tax returns. IRS Free File provides free access to the industry’s top tax preparation software, as well as a comprehensive suite of online tax forms. Participating taxpayers can also have their tax refunds direct deposited in as little as 10 days.

Now in its 10th year, IRS Free File is made possible through a landmark public-private partnership between the IRS and the Free File Alliance, a coalition of leading tax software companies. To learn more about the program, please contact me, or visit www.freefilealliance.org or www.freefile.irs.gov.

LEGISLATIVE UPDATE

Below, please find information on bills that are currently under consideration by the legislature. The full text of these bills can be found by visiting www.legislature.mi.gov. You can search for information by entering just the bill number.

  • House Bills 4920-4924 allow local governments to adopt ordinances which contain increased penalties for superdrunk violations, as reflected in the State Vehicle Code, but which are higher than currently allowed to be enforced by local law enforcement. Next: Passed and given immediate effect by the Senate and returned to the Michigan House of Representatives where the bill was ordered enrolled. It was presented to Governor Snyder on February 2, 2012 and is awaiting his signature into law.
  • Senate Bills 787 and 788 will allow for background checks of applicants for licensing of a home for the aged and adult care facility. Next: Sent to the Michigan House of Representatives and referred to the House Committee on Health Policy.
  • Senate Bill 130 would amend the Michigan Vehicle Code to reduce from six to three the number of parking citations that will prevent a motorist from renewing their driver’s license. Next: The concurred in the House amendments and the bill was given immediate effect and ordered enrolled. It was presented to Governor Snyder on February 3, 2012 and is awaiting his signature into law.
  • House Bill 5192 would amend the Public Employment Relations Act to revise language under which the selection of a retirant member of a municipality’s fire and/or police pension board is a prohibited subject of collective bargaining. Next: Substituted, passed and given immediate effect by the Senate and returned to the Michigan House of Representatives where the bill was ordered enrolled. It will next be presented to Governor Snyder for his signature into law.


Sincerely,
Senator Steve Bieda
Senate District 9

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