21 States Opt Out of Federal Unemployment Supplement

the American Rescue Plan’s $300 supplement is scheduled to continue until September 2021,

21 states have announced that they are opting out. The governors of Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, West Virginia, and Wyoming have stated that their states will stop participating in all federal pandemic jobless aid programs in June, while Arizona and Tennessee will opt out in early July. These states will also stop paying pandemic unemployment assistance benefits, which were made available for gig workers and the self-employed, as well as pandemic emergency unemployment compensation, which provides federal benefits for long-term unemployed people who have exhausted their maximum number of weeks on state benefits. All of these states have Republican governors. Other states have instead reinstated the milder requirement that applicants prove they are looking for work.

to read more https://www.bls.gov

Workplaces CDC Guidance

Guiding Principles to Keep in Mind

The more an individual interacts with others, and the longer that interaction, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spread. Masks may reduce the risk of COVID-19 spread when they are consistently used by customers and employees, especially when social distancing measures are difficult to maintain. The risk of COVID-19 spread increases in a restaurant or bar setting as interactions within 6 feet of others increase, as described below. Masks may reduce the risk of COVID-19 spread when worn in any of these risk scenarios.

  1. Lowest Risk: Food service limited to drive-through, delivery, take-out, and curb-side pick up.
  2. More Risk: Drive-through, delivery, take-out, and curb-side pick up emphasized. On-site dining limited to outdoor seating. Seating capacity reduced to allow tables to be spaced at least 6 feet apart.
  3. Higher Risk: On-site dining with indoor seating capacity reduced to allow tables to be spaced at least 6 feet apart. And/or on-site dining with outdoor seating, but tables not spaced at least six feet apart.
  4. Highest Risk: On-site dining with indoor seating. Seating capacity not reduced and tables not spaced at least 6 feet apart.

What can workers do when they feel too fatigued to work safely?

Recognize these are stressful and unusual circumstances and you may need more sleep or time to recover.

Tips to improve sleep:

  1. You’ll sleep better if your room is comfortable, dark, cool, and quiet.
  2. If it takes you longer than 15 minutes to fall asleep, set aside some time before bedtime to do things to help you relax. Try meditating, relaxation breathing, and progressive muscle relaxation.
  3. Before you begin working a long stretch of shifts, try “banking your sleep” – sleeping several extra hours longer than you normally do.
  4. After you’ve worked a long stretch of shifts, remember it may take several days of extended sleep (for example, 10 hours in bed) before you begin to feel recovered. Give yourself time to recover.
  5. Avoid sunlight or bright lights 90 minutes before you go to sleep, when possible. Exposure to light just before bedtime can cause you to feel more awake.
    • If you work a night shift and drive home during sunlight hours, try wearing sunglasses to reduce your exposure to sunlight during your drive home.
    • Consider using blackout shades at home when sleeping.
  6. Take naps when you have the opportunity.
    • A 90-minute nap before working a night shift can help prevent you from feeling tired at work.
  7. Eat healthy foods and stay physically active because it can improve your sleep.
  8. Before you go to sleep, avoid foods and drinks that can make falling asleep more difficult:
    • Avoid alcohol, heavy meals, and nicotine for at least 2–3 hours before bedtime.
    • Don’t drink caffeine within 5 hours of bedtime.

Know what to do if you feel too tired to work safely.

  1. Use a buddy system while you’re at work. Check in with each other to ensure everyone is coping with work hours and demands.
  2. Watch yourself and your coworkers for signs of fatigue — like yawning, difficulty keeping your eyes open, and difficulty concentrating. When you see something, say something to your coworkers so you can prevent workplace injuries and errors.
  3. Find out if your employer has a formal program to help you manage fatigue on the job. Read information about the program and ask questions so you fully understand your employer’s policies and procedures for helping employees manage fatigue.
  4. Report any fatigue-related events or close-calls to a manager to help prevent injuries and errors.
  5. Do not work if your fatigue threatens the safety of yourself or others. Report to a manager when you feel too tired to work safely.

for more https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/workplaces-businesses/index.html

New Exclusion of up to $10,200 of Unemployment Compensation


If your modified adjusted gross income (AGI) is less than $150,000, the American Rescue Plan enacted on March 11, 2021, excludes from income up to $10,200 of unemployment compensation paid in 2020, which means you don’t have to pay tax on unemployment compensation of up to $10,200. If you are married, each spouse receiving unemployment compensation doesn’t have to pay tax on unemployment compensation of up to $10,200. Amounts over $10,200 for each individual are still taxable. If your modified AGI is $150,000 or more, you can’t exclude any unemployment compensation.

The exclusion should be reported separately from your unemployment compensation.


Section 9675 of the act effectively makes all student loan debt eligible for tax-free loan forgiveness through the end of 2025.

What does this change mean for borrowers, and how should they plan for their student loans?

Understanding Section 9675

The legislation will treat any student loan forgiveness from 2021 through 2025 as tax-free.  The definition includes virtually all types of student loan debt used expressly for post-secondary education purposes.

Loans Included:

  • All federally backed loans: Direct Loans, FFEL, Consolidation Loans, Federal Perkins Loans, and Parent PLUS Loans
  • All state-sponsored education loan programs
  • All institutional loans made by colleges and universities
  • All private loans made to students and parents

The inclusion of state, institutional, and private student loans in the legislation is a massive expansion for student loan borrowers as all federal stimulus aid before the new legislation was limited to federal loan borrowers only.

H.R.1319 – American Rescue Plan Act of 2021

American Rescue Plan Act of 2021

This bill provides additional relief to address the continued impact of COVID-19 (i.e., coronavirus disease 2019) on the economy, public health, state and local governments, individuals, and businesses.

Specifically, the bill provides funding for

  • agriculture and nutrition programs, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as the food stamp program);
  • schools and institutions of higher education;
  • child care and programs for older Americans and their families;
  • COVID-19 vaccinations, testing, treatment, and prevention;
  • mental health and substance-use disorder services;
  • emergency rental assistance, homeowner assistance, and other housing programs;
  • payments to state, local, tribal, and territorial governments for economic relief;
  • multiemployer pension plans;
  • small business assistance, including specific programs for restaurants and live venues;
  • programs for health care workers, transportation workers, federal employees, veterans, and other targeted populations;
  • international and humanitarian responses;
  • tribal government services;
  • scientific research and development;
  • state, territorial, and tribal capital projects that enable work, education, and health monitoring in response to COVID-19; and
  • health care providers in rural areas.

The bill also includes provisions that

  • extend unemployment benefits and related services;
  • make up to $10,200 of 2020 unemployment compensation tax-free;
  • make student loan forgiveness tax-free through 2025;
  • provide a maximum recovery rebate of $1,400 per eligible individual;
  • expand and otherwise modify certain tax credits, including the child tax credit and the earned income tax credit;
  • provide premium assistance for certain health insurance coverage; and
  • require coverage, without cost-sharing, of COVID-19 vaccines and treatment under Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).

IRS Federal Tax Day for individuals extended to May 17… not State


Individual taxpayers can also postpone federal income tax payments for the 2020 tax year due on April 15, 2021, to May 17, 2021, without penalties and interest, regardless of the amount owed. This postponement applies to individual taxpayers, including individuals who pay self-employment tax. Penalties, interest and additions to tax will begin to accrue on any remaining unpaid balances as of May 17, 2021. Individual taxpayers will automatically avoid interest and penalties on the taxes paid by May 17

State tax returns

The federal tax filing deadline postponement to May 17, 2021, only applies to individual federal income returns and tax (including tax on self-employment income) payments otherwise due April 15, 2021, not state tax payments or deposits or payments of any other type of federal tax. Taxpayers also will need to file income tax returns in 42 states plus the District of Columbia. State filing and payment deadlines vary and are not always the same as the federal filing deadline.

The information presented on this Web site is provided “as is” without representation or warranty of any kind — as to suitability, reliability, applicability, merchantability, fitness, noninfringement, result, outcome or any other matter.  We do not represent or warrant that such information is or will be always up-to-date, complete, or accurate.  Any representation or warranty that might be otherwise implied is expressly disclaimed. You agree that we are not liable to you or others, in any way or for any damages of any kind or under any theory, arising from this site, or your access to or use of or reliance on the information in or through this site, including but not limited to liability or damages under contract or tort theories or any damages caused by viruses contained within electronic files of this site or any linked site, regardless of prior notice to us. 

Information presented on this Web site are summaries for general information and discussion only and may be considered an advertisement for certain purposes.  They are not full analyses of the matters presented, may not be relied upon as accounting and legal advice.

Second PPP Loan


Who may qualify

A borrower is generally eligible for a Second Draw PPP Loan if the borrower: 

  • Previously received a First Draw PPP Loan and will or has used the full amount only for authorized uses
  • Has no more than 300 employees; and
  • Can demonstrate at least a 25% reduction in gross receipts between comparable quarters in 2019 and 2020

Update on TAXES


DECEMBER 2020Legislation enacted in Maryland on May 8, 2020 creates an election for pass-through entities (PTEs, e.g., partnerships, S corporations, limited liability companies (LLCs) that are not taxed as corporations in Maryland, etc.) to pay tax at the entity level rather than at the level of the members of the entity, which creates a corresponding tax credit for members. The law was enacted in response to the annual $10,000 cap on state tax deductions introduced under the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act enacted in December 2017. Maryland was one of several states searching for ways to help residents mitigate the impact of the SALT cap. The law applies as from July 1, 2020, and the election for PTEs applies to tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2020.

Significantly, on November 9, 2020, the IRS released Notice 2020-75 to announce that the IRS and Treasury intend to issue proposed regulations to clarify that state and local income taxes imposed on and paid by (which the IRS has coined “Specified Income Tax Payments”) a PTE on its income may be deducted by the PTE in computing its non-separately stated taxable income or loss for the taxable year of payment.

This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction.

Common Tax Planning Strategies for Small Businesses

Time business income and deductions for tax savings

If you conduct your business using a pass-through entity — meaning a sole proprietorship, S corporation, LLC, or partnership — your shares of the business’s income and deductions are passed through to you and taxed at your personal rates.

The traditional strategy of deferring income into next year while accelerating deductible expenditures into this year makes sense if you expect to be in the same or lower tax bracket as previous year.

On the other hand, if you expect to be in a higher tax bracket next year, take the opposite approach. Accelerate income into this year (if possible) and postpone deductible expenditures until next year. That way, more income will be taxed at this year’s lower rate instead of next year’s higher rate.

If you have higher Net income accelerate deductible expenditures: Computers, printers, ink, car, etc

If you have cash on hand and high taxable income ….The general rule for cash-basis businesses is that you don’t have to report income until the year you receive cash or checks in hand or through the mail. To take advantage of this rule, consider waiting until 12/31/2020  to send out some invoices to customers. That will defer some income until next year, because you won’t collect the money until early next year. Needless to say, this idea should only be used for customers with solid payment histories

Care Act reading


The CARES Act provides fast and direct economic assistance for American workers and families, small businesses, and preserves jobs for American industries.

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was passed by Congress with overwhelming, bipartisan support and signed into law by President Trump on March 27th, 2020.  This over $2 trillion economic relief package delivers on the Trump Administration’s commitment to protecting the American people from the public health and economic impacts of COVID-19.

The CARES Act provides fast and direct economic assistance for American workers, families, and small businesses, and preserve jobs for our American industries.


Small Business PPP and PPP Loan Forgiveness Application Form 3508S

You (the Borrower) can apply for forgiveness of your Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan using this SBA Form 3508S only if the total PPP loan amount you received from your Lender was $50,000 or less. However, a borrower that, together with its affiliates (see 85 FR 20817 (April 15, 2020) regarding application of SBA’s affiliation rules and the exemption of otherwise qualified faith-based organizations from SBA’s affiliation rules), received PPP loans totaling $2 million or more cannot use this form. If you are not eligible to use this form, you must apply for forgiveness of your PPP loan using SBA Form 3508 or 3508EZ
(or lender’s equivalent form).
SBA Form 3508S requires fewer calculations and less documentation for eligible borrowers. Borrowers that use SBA Form 3508S are exempt from reductions in loan forgiveness amounts based on reductions in full-time equivalent (FTE) employees or in salaries or wages. SBA Form 3508S also does not require borrowers to show the calculations used to determine their loan forgiveness amount. However, SBA may request information and documents to review those calculations as part of its loan review process.
Complete this SBA Form 3508S in accordance with the instructions below, and submit it to your Lender (or the Lender that is servicing your loan). Borrowers may also complete this application electronically through their Lender.


CARES (Signed into law March 27)

HEROES 2.0 (Passed House Oct. 1)

Heroes (Passed House May 15)

HEALS (Introduced by Senate July 27)
Total cost of stimulus package$2.2 trillion$2.2 trillion$3 trillion$1 trillion
Stimulus check maximum payment amount$1,200 to single filers earning under $75k per year, $2,400 for joint filers under $125k. Reduced $5 per $100 of income above limits.Same as CARES.Same as CARES.Same as CARES.
How much stimulus money you get for dependents$500 for all dependents 16 and under. College students 24 and under are not eligible.$500 for all dependents, no age limit.$1,200 for dependents, maximum of three.$500 for all dependents, no age limit.
Enhanced unemployment benefit$600 per week in addition to state benefits.Same as CARES.Same as CARES.Initially $200 per week. Then up to $500 per week to match 70% of lost wages when added to state benefits.
How long enhanced unemployment lastsExpires July 31.Until Jan. 31, 2021, with a transition period extending until March 31, 2020. Allocates $925 million to help states process claims.January 2021 for most workers, through March 2021 for gig workers, independent contractors, part-time workers and self-employed.$200 per week bonus through September. Then 70% matching of lost wages. Extends expiration of federal benefits until Dec. 31.
Paycheck Protection ProgramAllocated $659 billion total in forgivable loans for small businesses, who must use 75% on payroll to be eligible for forgiveness. $130 billion remains, but expires Aug. 8.Allocates over $30 billion, additional. Allows second loans to small businesses with fewer than 200 employees that have experienced a 25% reduction in quarterly revenue. Excludes publicly traded firms from eligibility for second loans. Puts limits on businesses with more than one physical location. Streamlines forgiveness process.Expands eligibility, eliminates 75% payroll requirement and extends application period to Dec. 31.Injects another $190 billion into the PPP fund, expands eligibility and allows businesses to request a second loan. Eliminates 75% payroll requirement and expands approved uses of funds for loan forgiveness.
Employee tax creditTax credit on 50% of up to $10,000 in wages.Enhances tax credit established in CARES Act.Increases tax credit to 80% of up to $15,000 in wages.Increases tax credit to 65% of up to $30,000.
Bonus for employees who start new jobs or are rehiredDoes not address.Does not address.Does not address.There could be a return-to-work bonus of up to $450 per week for unemployed workers who secure a new job or are rehired.
Eviction protections and moratoriumBans late fees until July 25 and evictions until Aug. 24 on properties backed by federal mortgage programs (Fannie Mae, etc.) or that receive federal funds (HUD, etc.)$59.1 billion allocated for rent relief and other housing services. (Eviction moratorium already established by CDC order.)Expands to cover nearly all rental properties in the US, extends eviction moratorium an additional 12 months, allocates $200 billion for housing programs and another $100 billion for rental assistance.Does not address.
School reopeningsDoes not address.$182 billion for K-12, $39 billion for higher education, $57 billion for childcare.$58 billion for grades K-12, $42 billion for higher education.$70 billion to K-12 that open for in-person classes, $29 billion for higher education, $1 billion to Bureau of Indian Education, $5 billion state discretion.
Liability protection from coronavirus illnessDoes not address.Does not address.Does not address.5 year liability shield to prevent schools, businesses, hospitals, from being sued over coronavirus related issues.
Coronavirus testing, tracing and treatmentDoes not address.$75 billion.Does not address.$16 billion.

The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information, content, and materials available on this site are for general informational purposes only.  Information on this website may not constitute the most up-to-date legal or other information.  This website contains links to other third-party websites.  Such links are only for the convenience of the reader, user or browser; We do not recommend or endorse the contents of the third-party sites.

Readers of this website should contact their attorney/accountant to obtain advice with respect to any particular matter.  No reader, user, or browser of this site should act or refrain from acting on the basis of information on this site without first seeking legal/accounting advice in the relevant jurisdiction.

The content on this posting is provided “as is;” no representations are made that the content is error-free.


Do you run out of money before you run out of month? Many do, but it doesn’t have to be that way! Wealth is the result of widening the gap between what you earn and what you spend. Most of us make the mistake of ramping up our spending as our disposable incomes rise. This is self-defeating. If you do not develop a respect for money, it will always elude you.

Continue reading “Budgeting”