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The president-elect and vice president-elect met today with members of their COVID team, including COVID-19 Coordinator Jeff Zients, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Dr. Anthony Fauci, CDC Director-designate Dr. Rochelle Walensky, COVID-19 Deputy Coordinator Natalie Quillian, COVID-19 Vaccinations Coordinator Bechara Choucair, and the co-chairs of his COVID-19 transition task force — former FDA Commissioner Dr. David Kessler, incoming Health Equity Task Force Chair Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith, and U.S. Surgeon General-nominee Dr. Vivek Murthy.


The president-elect and vice president-elect were updated on the escalating number of COVID cases and the emergence of the new strain of the virus in the US. The team briefed the president-elect and vice president-elect on plans to enhance and accelerate vaccinations after they are sworn in.


A number of options were discussed, and the president-elect directed the team to explore all possible avenues — particularly increasing federal leadership — to accelerate getting the U.S. population vaccinated.


Source: https://buildbackbetter.gov/press-releases/readout-of-president-elect-bidens-briefing-on-covid-19-response-and-vaccination-strategy/



The Internal Revenue Service today urged people to visit IRS.gov for the most current information on the second round of Economic Impact Payments rather than calling the agency or their financial institutions or tax software providers. IRS phone assisters do not have additional information beyond what’s available on IRS.gov. The IRS and the Treasury Department began issuing a second round of Economic Impact Payments, often referred to as stimulus payments, last week.


The direct deposit payments may take several days to post to individual accounts. Some Americans may have seen the direct deposit payments as pending or as provisional payments in their accounts before the scheduled payment date of Jan. 4, 2021, which is the official date funds are available.


Paper checks also began going out and will continue to be sent through January. Some people will be mailed debit cards in January, and the IRS urges people to carefully check their mail. Mailed payments will require more processing and mailing time. Those who reside abroad will have longer wait times for checks as disruptions to air travel and mail delivery in some countries will slow delivery.


The IRS emphasizes that there is no action required by eligible individuals to receive this second payment. The payments are automatic, and people should not contact their financial institutions or the IRS with payment timing questions.


Eligibility Generally, U.S. citizens and resident aliens who are not eligible to be claimed as a dependent on someone else’s income tax return are eligible for this second payment. Eligible individuals will automatically receive an Economic Impact Payment of up to $600 for individuals or $1,200 for married couples and up to $600 for each qualifying child. Most people who have an adjusted gross income for 2019 of up to $75,000 for individuals and up to $150,000 for married couples filing joint returns and surviving spouses, will receive the full amount of the second payment. For filers with income above those amounts, the payment amount is reduced.


Checking the status of a payment Starting today, people can check the status of both their first and second payments by using the Get My Payment tool, available in English and Spanish only on IRS.gov.


Payment not received or less than expected? Claim on 2020 tax return Payments started going out last week and will continue through mid-January. Direct deposit payments are being made first to those that have valid routing and account information on file for direct deposit purposes. Because of the speed at which IRS issued this second round of payments, some payments may have been sent to an account that may be closed or no longer active. By law, the financial institution must return the payment to the IRS, they cannot hold and issue the payment to an individual when the account is no longer active. While the IRS is exploring options to correct these payments, if you have not received your full payment by the time you file your 2020 tax return, you may claim the Recovery Rebate Credit on your tax return.


The credit is figured like the Economic Impact Payment, except that the credit eligibility and the credit amount are based on the 2020 tax year information, including income.

For people who received a partial Economic Impact Payment, they can take the Recovery Rebate Credit for any remaining amount they’re eligible for by completing line 30 of the 2020 Form 1040 or 1040-SR.


Changing bank account or mailing information The IRS cannot change payment information, including bank account or mailing information. If an eligible taxpayer does not get a payment or it is less than expected, it may be claimed on the 2020 tax return as the Recovery Rebate Credit. Remember, Economic Impact Payments are an advance payment of what will be called the Recovery Rebate Credit on the 2020 Form 1040 or Form 1040-SR.


More information For more information about Economic Impact Payments and the 2020 Recovery Rebate Credit, visit IRS.gov/eip.


Starting next week, people can check the status of their payment at IRS.gov/GetMyPayment.


For other COVID-19-related tax relief, visit IRS.gov/Coronavirus.

WAIKῙKῙ-DIAMOND HEAD SHORELINE FISHERIES MANAGEMENT AREA WILL CLOSE TO FISHING FOR ONE YEAR STARTING JAN. 1, 2021


The Waikīkī-Diamond Head Shoreline Fisheries Management Area (SFMA), O‘ahu, will be closed to fishing for one year, from Jan. 1 through Dec. 31, 2021.

The SFMA encompasses the nearshore waters between the ‘Ewa wall of the Waikīkī War Memorial Natatorium and the Diamond Head Lighthouse, from the high-water mark on shore to a minimum seaward distance of 500 yards, or to the edge of the fringing reef if one occurs beyond 500 yards. The area is closed to fishing during odd-numbered years.


Fishing is not allowed at any time in the adjacent Waikīkī Marine Life Conservation District (MLCD), which extends from the ‘Ewa wall of the Natatorium to the Kapahulu groin (jetty). The periodic closure of Waikiki-Diamond Head SFMA to fishing is intended to give fish a break from fishing pressure.


The Waikīkī-Diamond Head is the only area in the state where this management approach is used.


Copies of statewide fishing regulations are available at local fishing supply stores and on the DAR web site.


To report violations of any fishing regulation, please call the DLNR enforcement hotline at (808) 643-DLNR (643-3567).


Division of Aquatics Resources (DAR) website: https://dlnr.hawaii.gov/dar/



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