Senator Dave Hildenbrand E-Newsletter
 

MARCH 2017

Helpful information as you prepare your taxes

The Office of the Taxpayer Advocate in the Michigan Department of Treasury has compiled the following information that you may find useful as you work on your taxes this year:

• FREE TAX PREPARATION. Volunteers from local community organizations help prepare basic tax returns for the elderly and low- to moderate-income individuals (approximately $53,000 and below). This service is available through the following resources. Contact these organizations for their days/hours of operation and location(s):
     o Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) at 1-800-906-9887.
     o AARP at 1-888-227-7669 or visit their website here.

INTERNET SELF-SERVICE IS THE QUICKEST AND EASIEST WAY TO CHECK ON A MICHIGAN INCOME TAX REFUND 24/7 AND TO CONTACT TREASURY WITH QUESTIONS.• All you need is a copy of your income tax return that you are inquiring about so that you can provide answers to verification questions (for the “Five Shared Secrets”): Where's My Refund?

• DID YOU RECEIVE AN “IDENTITY CONFIRMATION QUIZ” LETTER CONCERNING YOUR MICHIGAN INCOME TAX RETURN? The Michigan Department of Treasury is protecting your refund from tax fraud.  See this link for more information.

Taxpayer’s Guide

In addition to these tips you can also find a digital copy of the 2017 Taxpayer’s Guide in the publications section on my website. Though not a substitute for Michigan Department of Treasury tax instruction booklets, the 2017 Michigan Taxpayer's Guide provides useful information on Michigan's individual income tax and property taxes.

As always, please do not hesitate to contact my office if you need any additional assistance with this or any other state related matter.

New law to expand training for Michigan firefighters

Today’s firefighters are often the primary responders to any number of local hazards, not just fires. Senate legislation signed into law earlier this year will help ensure firefighters have access to the education and training they need to perform their duties.

The new law expands training programs eligible to receive grants to include emergency medical service, hazardous material response, technical rescue, airport rescue and firefighting, fire inspection and investigation, and fire safety education. Funding for training opportunities comes from the fireworks safety fee assessed on the sale of all fireworks in Michigan.

March is Reading Month

March is Reading Month

Throughout the month of March, educators, parents and community leaders will join together to emphasize the importance of reading. While there are many ways we can encourage the habit of reading, the best way is to lead by example and show how fun reading can be.

Learning to read, and reading well, is the foundation for success in school. By reading to your child and encouraging them to read to you, you can help your child prepare for a successful future.  Great readers are our future leaders!

Free financial counseling available to delinquent student loan borrowers

Michigan student loan borrowers who are delinquent on their federal student loans can receive free one-on-one counseling under a pilot program announced by the Michigan Department of Treasury in partnership with a division of the National Student Loan Program.

As part of the program, participants work with counselors to develop a repayment plan that helps them return to good financial standing. Find more information, including eligibility requirements, at www.loanassistmichigan.org.

Hunters win the hunt of a lifetime!

Pure Michigan Hunt

Three lucky hunters from Kent, Lapeer and Montcalm counties were recently announced as the 2017 Pure Michigan Hunt winners by the Department of Natural Resources. Along with elk, bear, spring and fall turkey and antlerless deer licenses to be used in 2017, the winners will also get first pick opening morning of the waterfowl season at any of Michigan’s managed waterfowl hunt areas. In addition, each hunter receives a package of hunting gear donated by Michigan businesses and organizations valued at more than $4,000!

The 2017 drawing had a total of 51,090 applications, generating more than $259,000 to help fund wildlife habitat restoration and improvements in Michigan. Applications for the next Pure Michigan Hunt drawing will be available starting March 1. More information is available at www.michigan.gov/pmh.

Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) creates online tool to assist Michigan consumers with the filing of electronic complaints

DIFS’ Office of Consumer Services (OCS) has launched the online tool that will assist in the initial review of complaints against insurance entities, banks, credit unions, mortgage companies, payday lenders, vehicle loans, personal loans, money transfers, and debt management transactions. To launch an online complaint please click here, or to learn more about the services DIFS provide, please visit their website at www.michigan.gov/difs.

 

School Tour Groups

School Groups
Almost every week, I have the privilege of welcoming students from the Grand Rapids area to the Michigan capitol building. During their visit, I always try to welcome them and take a quick photo. To see these pictures, please visit this page on my website.
 

Contact Senator Hildenbrand’s Office

Senator Dave Hildenbrand
P.O. Box 30036
Lansing, MI 48909-7536

Toll-Free: (866) 305-2129 or (517) 373-1801

www.SenatorDaveHildenbrand.com

Email: SenDHildenbrand@senate.michigan.gov.  Please include name, address, and phone number.

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The purpose of this E-Newsletter is to provide a timely update of Senator Hildenbrand's activity at the State Capitol to the residents and organizations of the 29th Senate District. Electronic newsletters will only be sent out on a monthly basis. You will not be inundated with e-mails.