Be Alert for IRS Scam Phone Calls
11/17/2017
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Weekly Roundup
#Listrak\DateStampLong# The latest news from the State Capitol

Be Alert for IRS Scam Phone Calls
In recent weeks, our community has seen in increase in scam phone calls from thieves intent on stealing money or identities. Criminals pose as the IRS to trick victims out of their money or personal information.

The IRS will never:
• Call you to demand immediate payment. The IRS will not call you if you owe taxes without first sending you a bill in the mail.
• Demand that you pay taxes and not allow you to question or appeal the amount you owe.
• Require that you pay your taxes a certain way. For instance, require that you pay with a prepaid debit card.
• Ask for your credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
• Threaten to bring in police or other agencies to arrest you for not paying.

If you don’t owe taxes, or have no reason to think that you do, do not give out any information. Hang up immediately. Contact the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration by clicking here.

If you know you owe taxes, or think you may owe taxes, please call the IRS at 800-829-1040. IRS workers can help you.

Stay alert to scams that use the IRS as a lure. Tax scams can happen any time of year, not just at tax time. For more information, click here.


Adoptees Can Now Apply for Original Birth Certificates
Pennsylvania adult adoptees can now apply for and receive a copy of their original birth certificate from the Pennsylvania Department of Health. Act 127 of 2016 reinstated this access for the first time since 1984 to allow these adults to have the same access to the record as everyone else.

The department began accepting early submissions this summer for processing now, and as of Oct. 31, 1,180 adoptees have already applied for a copy of their original birth certificate. Adoptees who submit applications on or after Nov. 3 should allow 45 days for processing.

Under previous Pennsylvania law, adoptees could petition the courts for a copy of their original birth records; however, that request could have been denied by a judge.

For more information on the new law and the application process, click here.
 

Shop Local This Season
To spotlight the role that small businesses play, Small Business Saturday will be held Saturday, Nov. 25, to encourage residents to shop small this holiday season. Nearly 1 million small businesses in Pennsylvania employ about 2.4 million workers, as of 2014, and make up more than 98 percent of the state’s employers.

The House Majority Policy Committee, as part of its fall agenda to “Strengthen Pennsylvania’s Middle Class,” recently held a legislative hearing to discuss how state government can help small businesses succeed and the challenges small businesses face when dealing with state agencies and complex regulations.

For state resources on starting a small business, click here.
 

Thanksgiving Wishes to All!
Pennsylvania can claim to be the home of the first recognition of Thanksgiving, when Gov. Simon Snyder was the first to recognize it as an official holiday on the third Thursday of November in 1817. Philadelphia’s Gimbels Department Store was also the first to host a Thanksgiving Day parade in 1920.

In honor of the Thanksgiving holiday on Nov. 23, state offices will be closed on Thursday, and my offices will also be closed on Friday, Nov. 24.

From my family to yours, may you all have a safe, healthy and happy Thanksgiving.
 

Traveling Over the Holiday? Check Traffic Conditions on 511PA.com
Travelers can log onto 511PA.com to check current traffic impacts from construction, traffic delay warnings, weather forecasts, traffic speed information and access to more than 770 traffic cameras. The service is free and available 24 hours a day.

511PA is also available through a smartphone application for iPhone and Android devices, by calling 5-1-1, or by following regional Twitter alerts accessible on the 511PA website.

Travelers are always reminded to buckle up, put their phones away and stay sober when behind the wheel.

In other PennDOT news, driver license and photo centers will be closed Thursday, Nov. 23, and Friday, Nov. 24. Customers may still obtain a variety of driver and vehicle products and services online through PennDOT’s Driver and Vehicle Services website, dmv.pa.gov.
 
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