Ensure end-of-year deductions will be allowable As we approach the end of this year, December 31 is the magic date. In order to include most items on this year’s tax return, payment must occur on or before December 31. The definition of “payment,” however, takes on a special meaning on December 31. The general definition today is that when a check is written, the item is paid. If I write a check on December 31, 2010, and can prove that I mailed it on December 31, 2010, in most instances—but not always—that item is going to be counted as being paid in 2010. We can look to April 15 for some guidance in this matter. If taxpayers have a balance due on their tax return, that amount is due and payable no later than April 15. The taxpayers can write a check on April 15, mail it on April 15, and it will be considered as paid on April 15 even though the check doesn’t arrive at the Internal Revenue Service until a few days later. However, the burden of proving the check was in the mail on April 15 lies squarely on the backs of the taxpayers. Since the check won’t arrive at the IRS until sometime after April 15, the IRS might question if it indeed was mailed on April 15. Anything short of certified mail with proof of mailing and proof of delivery could be questioned. Private carriers such as UPS and FedEx also provide proof of mailing and proof of delivery. A copy of an envelope with a stamp or even a meter showing April 15 can still be questioned because the stamp or meter normally doesn’t have a post office cancellation showing the envelope was mailed on April 15. Taking these same rules back to December 31 tells us that we must be able to prove the check was written and mailed on December 31 and not in January. Anything short of this proof could put the deduction in danger. In other words, if a check is written on December 31, 2010, but not mailed until January 2011, that deduction is questionable. To be safe, just write the check before December 31 so it gets to its destination before […]
December 9 2010
Lakes Elementary students, friends and family celebrated the joy of the holiday season with concerts held at the Rockford High School auditorium on Wednesday, Dec. 1. The show was directed by Lindsay Yntema and featured songs of the holidays, some audience participation and a “surprise” visit by Santa,played by Principal Blake Bowman. The first half of the concert featured kindergarten and first-grade students, followed by Session II with the second- and third-graders performing before an appreciative audience.
Thursday, December 9 FREE Holiday Carriage Rides through Rockford—5:30 to 8:30 p.m. in front of Custard by the Dam, Squires St., downtown Rockford, sponsored by Rockford Chamber of Commerce. Horse-drawn rides provided by Grand Carriages. Rockford Lions Club Meeting—6 p.m. social, 6:30 dinner and 7 p.m. meeting at the Community Cabin.Rockford. Meetings held every second and fourth Thursday of each month. Intro to Grand Rapids Opportunities for Women (GROW)—12 to 1 p.m. at GROW, 25 Sheldon Blvd., Suite 210, Grand Rapids, presented by GROW staff. Intro is required for anyone eager to learn how to start or expand their small business. Get an overview of the programs and services, meet the staff and watch graduates describe their experiences in an inspirational video. Held the first Tuesday and second Thursday of each month. Admission is free. To register or for more information, call (616) 458-3404 or visit www.growbusiness.org. Friday, December 10 FREE Holiday Carriage Rides through Rockford—5:30 to 8:30 p.m. in front of Custard by the Dam, Squires St., downtown Rockford, sponsored by Rockford Chamber of Commerce. Horse-drawn rides provided by Grand Carriages. Saturday, Dec. 11 13th Annual Christmas Cookie Walk—9 a.m. until gone, at North Kent Presbyterian Church, 6175 Kuttshill Dr., Rockford (one block west of Wolverine Blvd., just north of Blythefield Country Club). Cookies are still only $6 per box. Public very welcome! Choose your own selection from more than 25 varieties of homemade Christmas cookies. Come early for best selection. Cookies make great gifts. Church cookbook will also be available. For further information, please call the church at (616) 866-2230 Tuesday through Thursday, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. “Christmas Choir,” a Comedy—6:30 p.m. at Grace Evangelical Free Church, 4714 Thirteen Mile Rd., Rockford. Light desserts follow the performance. Holiday Bake Sale—10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Timothy Hauenstein Reynolds Township Library, Howard City, presented by Friends of the Library. The musical program will start at 10 a.m. with the Tri County Jazz Band. Sunday, December 12 Cookies and Cocoa with Santa—1 to 3 p.m. at Rockford Sportsman’s Club, 1115 Northland Dr. Public invited. Enjoy Christmas stories, craft time and cookie decorating. Don’t forget your camera! For more information, call (616) 866-4273. “Christmas Choir,” a Comedy—6:30 p.m. at Grace Evangelical Free Church, 4714 […]
‘Consistent With’ by CRAIG JAMES One of the things that marks a good scientific theory is whether or not it can make accurate predictions. That is one of the problems I have with the human-induced global-warming theory. Most of the predictions based upon the theory have turned out to be wrong, or in many cases they are so general and contradictory that no matter what happens it is said to be “consistent with” global warming. Early last year a study at the University of California, Berkley, reported that due to global warming, “California’s coastal fog has decreased significantly over the past 100 years, potentially endangering coast redwood trees dependent on cool, humid summers.” However, later in the year the National Weather Service reported that the San Francisco Bay area had just recorded its foggiest summer in 50 years. Shortly thereafter, another study, this time from San Jose State in California, reported that “thanks to global warming, it’s about to get even foggier” along the California coast. So I guess more fog is consistent with predictions of climate change and less fog is consistent with predictions of climate change. I wonder if the same amount of fog would also be “consistent with” climate change? Probably so. After all, we are told that warm temperatures, cold temperatures, droughts, floods, more storms, fewer storms, more snow, less snow, etc., are all “consistent with” global warming. I guess you don’t have to be the White Queen from Alice in Wonderland to believe six impossible things before breakfast. But I digress. It turns out that the same scientist who published the fog decline story received a $2.5 million grant for a new study on the health of the California redwoods. The proposal was to “chart the health of the trees over time and use laboratory analysis of carbon and oxygen isotopes to figure out how the trees have reacted in the past to climate and weather conditions.” It was thought that laboratory testing of the redwood tree rings would indicate what negative effects on growth were produced by the changing climate, which of course he believed was caused by humans. His conclusion is not surprising to me but it apparently was to him. “Redwood studies thus far have come up […]