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May 2020

President, Tony Pizza,

Another month of home arrest has gone by. We definitely will not be ready to have a meeting in May, even if some current restrictions are relaxed. Most of us are in that high-risk elderly population they say is most vulnerable. And later, when it might be possible to meet, I suspect many of you will still want to be careful. Even before the virus shutdown, we had low attendance. Any lower and it might be too low to support lunch service at the Elks Club. We may have to consider another location, like a restaurant with a separate area for meetings. Not saying we will, but we should consider it. If you have a suggestion, let me know.

Did you mail in your tax return for 2019? Are you waiting for your refund? Bad news. It’s going to take a lot longer than in past years. The reason is that the IRS sent most employees home, and your return is waiting in a big pile waiting for them to come back. At the end of April, approximately 10,000 IRS employees were asked to return to work to help process tens of millions of pieces of unopened mail. That unopened mail includes payments, actual tax returns, and claims of identity theft and requests for help. But I filed electronically in mid-March, it was immediately accepted, but instead of the advertised “less than 21 days”, it’s 6 weeks and it’s “still being processed”. These days, we all have to have patience. Lots of it.

Another financial item: if you have an IRA or Thrift Saving Plan, you don’t have to take withdrawals until age 72 instead of 70 ˝. Also, withdrawal requirement for this year are waived, so you don’t have to sell investments that are possibly lower in value.

I was feeling weak and rundown. My Doctor gave me a prescription for a strengthening solution that would make me stronger. I called him the next day because I had a problem. He asked what it was. I told him “I would like to use it but I can’t open the damn bottle!”