Monday, May 2nd, 2016
“Where’s My Mauldin & Jenkins Peeps?” Duck is entered in the PACE Center for Girls “Best Dressed Duck” Contest. Take a minute to vote for our duck by clicking below.
You can vote up to 5 times per day per electronic device.
P.S. You will not need to register to VOTE, but you will need to register if you’d like to COMMENT on an entry.
Thanks for voting!
Friday, April 29th, 2016
The 2016 filing season has closed with renewed emphasis on cybersecurity, tax-related identity theft and customer service. Despite nearly constant attack by cybercriminals, the IRS reported that taxpayer information remains secure. The agency also continued to intercept thousands of bogus returns and prevent the issuance of fraudulent refunds.
Concerns about cybersecurity and the confidentiality of taxpayer information were paramount during the filing season. According to the IRS, its basic systems are attacked “millions of times” every day by cybercriminals looking for weaknesses. In April, IRS Commissioner John Koskinen told Congress that the agency’s basic systems are secure. However, cybercriminals did breach its Get Transcript app in 2015 and other applications are under constant probing and attack by cybercriminals.
Koskinen assured Congress that the agency is beefing up its cybersecurity staffing. The IRS has hired 55 new cybersecurity experts. However, he acknowledged that the agency’s cybersecurity head has left and the position is open. This has drawn criticism from lawmakers who have questioned why such an important job is open. Koskinen said that the lengthy government hiring process is a deterrent to hiring cybersecurity professionals and urged Congress to reinstate the agency’s fast-track hiring process.
Closely related to cybersecurity is tax-related identity theft. The breach of the Get Transcript App in 2015 resulted in $50 million in fraudulent refunds paid to cybercriminals, according to a government watchdog.
Monday, April 25th, 2016
Wednesday, April 13th, 2016
Each year, the Bradenton office participates in a duck decorating contest as part of the Manatee PACE Center for Girls’ spring fundraiser. You may recall our ducks of years past: “Duck & Run the Numbers”, “Olivia Newton Duck: Let’s Get Fiscal” and “MJ Rockefeller Duck.”
Brainstorming how to decorate our duck for this year, the Marketing department was inspired by Easter, which at the time was right around the corner, and those cute little Peeps! So, we decided to dress our duck like a giant Peep and title our entry, “Where’s My Mauldin & Jenkins Peeps?”
But we couldn’t stop there…we included real Peeps to represent each employee in our Bradenton office. (Had there not been size restrictions to the entry, we would’ve included everyone across the 6 offices…now that’s a lot of peeps!). Take a look…
“Where’s My Mauldin & Jenkins Peeps” won 1st Runner Up in “Best Dressed Duck” contest judged by PACE reps at the Ducktail Party on April 9th.
STAY TUNED: The “People’s choice Award” online voting via the Bradenton Herald will take place in May. We will share details on how to vote at that time. (Last year we received 2nd place in this contest!)
SUPPORT PACE: Contact Brian Carter if you’d like to support PACE by “Adopting a Duck” (or a few). Your rubber duck(s) will be entered into the “Lucky Duck Race” being held on May 14th at Tarpon Point Grill, where you could win some BIG prizes. $5 for one duck, $20 for 5 ducks and $100 for 30 ducks.
Friday, April 1st, 2016
Congratulations to all!
(And don’t worry, this isn’t an April Fools’ Day joke!)
Keith Collins to Senior
Thursday, March 31st, 2016
As the April 18, 2016 filing deadline quickly approaches, the IRS is processing millions of returns and issuing refunds that so far total over $175 billion. The agency reports it is on track to complete a successful filing season as the eleventh hour rush of returns gets underway.
The filing deadline to submit 2015 tax returns is Monday, April 18, 2016, rather than the traditional April 15 date. The filing deadline shifts to April 18 because the District of Columbia celebrates Emancipation Day on Friday, April 15. Taxpayers in Maine and Massachusetts get an additional day to file because of a state holiday. The deadline will be Tuesday, April 19, in Maine and Massachusetts.
In December 2015, the IRS cautioned that late year-end tax legislation could delay the start of the 2016 filing season. The IRS was able to quickly reprogram its processing systems for year-end tax legislation and launched the 2016 filing season on time. Since late January, the IRS has received some 75 million returns out of the approximately 140 million it expects to receive by April 18. By far, the vast majority of returns have been filed electronically.
As of mid-March, the average tax refund was $2,945, which reflects a 0.2 percent increase from the $2,938 average refund at the same time last year. Some 53.3 million refunds have been directly deposited into taxpayers’ financial accounts without the issuance of a paper check. The average direct deposit refund as of March 4 was $3,078. Almost $164.1 billion in refunds have been issued to taxpayers via direct deposit.
Taxpayers who are not on track to file their returns by the April 18 deadline can seek an extension of time to file, but not to make payment of any taxes due. All requests for extension of time to file must be made by the regular due date of the taxpayer’s return to avoid penalties. Form 4868, Application For Automatic Extension of Time To File U.S. Individual Tax Return, may be filed electronically or on paper.
Thursday, March 17th, 2016
Another round of grueling CPA exams have been passed by several M&J employees! Way to go team!
Wednesday, March 9th, 2016
Our Atlanta office was pleased to welcome members of the Georgia Center for Nonprofits today for a lunch and learn member event. Chief executives, board members and senior leadership affiliates of GCN member organizations were invited to attend a presentation on nonprofit leadership. Here’s glimpse at what the participants learned today:
How Prepared are You for an Emergency? Planning for Leadership Succession
Ensuring that your organization has strong nonprofit leadership is critical, especially during the uncertainties of an emergency. The unplanned absence of the executive director or another key leader creates high vulnerability for nonprofits. Yet only a third of nonprofits have an emergency succession plan in place.
Join expert Mary Hughes, Senior Consultant with GCN’s Nonprofit Consulting Group, to learn how you can be proactive in planning, so that an emergency doesn’t derail your organization. After this session, you’ll have the tools to develop an emergency plan that will double as a leadership development plan for your key direct reports.
What You’ll Learn:
- The truth about common succession planning myths
- How to develop a framework for creating an emergency succession plan
- How to engage board and staff in the process
ABOUT THE PRESENTER
Mary Bear Hughes
GCN Senior Consultant
Mary’s consulting expertise includes strategic and business planning, board development and governance, executive succession planning and transition, search consultation, and organizational development. Her 30 years of experience includes consulting and operational roles in the private and nonprofit sectors including leadership as an Executive Director and a board leader
– See more at: http://www.gcn.org/events/Member-Event-How-Prepared-are-You-for-an-Emergency-Planning-for-Leadership-Succession#sthash.Jcizk5gw.dpuf
Tuesday, March 8th, 2016
The Hob Nob is a favorite among our Bradenton staff. Hosted by the Bradenton Area Economic Development Council (EDC), last week’s Hob Nob attracted more than 700 attendees. This ultimate networking event is centered around great FOOD (and there was plenty of it) and tasty beverages.
The M&J team again served up the wine. We enjoyed seeing familiar faces and meeting new friends.
Tuesday, March 1st, 2016
Small business incentives, reforms to ACA taxes, and other proposals in Obama’s FY 2017 budget could gain traction in 2016
Tweaks to enhanced Code Sec. 179 expensing and the high-dollar health care excise tax are two proposals in President Obama’s fiscal year (FY) 2017 budget that could become law before the end of his term. President Obama released his FY 2017 budget proposals in February. Other proposals that could be passed by Congress include enhancements to small business tax incentives, expanded opportunities for retirement saving, revisions to the net investment income (NII) tax, and more.
A long-sought goal of many small businesses was made permanent by the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015 (PATH Act): enhanced Code Sec. 179 expensing. President Obama proposed more tweaks to Code Sec. 179 expensing. Under the President’s proposal, the annual expensing limitation would increase from an inflation-adjusted $500,000 to an inflation-adjusted $1 million. The phase-out threshold would remain at an inflation-adjusted $2 million level. President Obama also proposed to increase the deduction for start-up expenses and the tax break for small employers that obtain health coverage for their employees through SHOP.
High-cost health plans
Certain employer-sponsored health insurance plans (high-cost plans also known as “Cadillac plans”) may be liable for an excise tax. Generally, if the aggregate cost of applicable employer-sponsored coverage provided to an employee exceeds a statutory dollar limit, adjusted annually, the excess benefit is subject to a 40 percent excise tax.
Originally, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) imposed the excise tax on high-cost health plans effective after 2017. The PATH Act delayed the excise tax on high dollar health plans until after 2019. President Obama has proposed to increase the excise tax threshold to the greater of the current law threshold or a “gold plan average premium.”