01-22-2020  3:24 pm   •   PDX Weather    •   SEA weather  
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NORTHWEST NEWS

2020 Census Begins in Remote Toksook Bay, Alaska

Census takers begin counting remainder of 220 remote Alaska villages as part of national headcount

St. Andrew Parish Presents 2020 Martin Luther King, Jr. Awards

The awards are given to people whose service embodies the values of Dr. King, who used nonviolence, civil disobedience, and Christian teaching to advance the cause of civil rights in America

The Skanner in Step With Changing Times

Celebrating a history of service

Starbucks, Home of the $4 Latte, is Moving Into Poor Areas

Starbucks plans to open or remodel 85 stores by 2025 in rural and urban communities across the U.S. The effort will bring to 100 the number of "community stores" Starbucks has opened since it announced the program in 2015

NEWS BRIEFS

Nashville Airport Store Seeks Works by African American Authors

The store, a namesake project of Mrs. Rosetta Miller-Perry and The Tennessee Tribune, will open March 2020 ...

Annual “Salute to Greatness” Luncheon Celebrating Students, Community & Civic Leaders

Keynote Speaker: Ms. Rukaiyah Adams, Chair of Oregon Investment Council & Chief Investment Officer at Meyer Memorial Trust....

Grant High School Students to Read Their Own Work at Broadway Books

Local author and writing instructor Joanna Rose will lead thegroup of young writers at the event to be held on Wednesday, January 22 ...

AG Rosenblum Announces $4 Million Settlement with CenturyLink

Since 2014, Oregon DOJ has received more than 1,200 consumer complaints about CenturyLink ...

Black Guest at Downtown Portland Hotel Sues Over ‘No Party’ Promise

Felicia Gonzales claims the front desk clerk at the Residence Inn told her that all guests had to sign the policy, but she watched...

Mayors launch task force to oppose minor league contraction

Dozens of mayors from across the United States have formed a task force opposing a proposal by Major League Baseball to eliminate 42 affiliated minor league franchises for the 2021 season.The coalition launched Tuesday with three leaders and was up to 30 members by Wednesday afternoon, ranging from...

Judge: No keeping Stormy and Trump out of NY Avenatti trial

NEW YORK (AP) — There's no keeping porn star Stormy Daniels and President Donald Trump out of California attorney Michael Avenatti's extortion case, a judge said Wednesday as he ordered the trial to commence Monday and refused the government's insistence that he ban mention of Daniels and...

New Missouri coach Eli Drinkwitz predicts success

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Eli Drinkwitz was saying all the right things after being introduced as the new football coach at Missouri, laying out his vision for the once-proud program with unwavering confidence and bold proclamations.Then the former Appalachian State coach made a minor...

LSU's Burrow, Auburn's Brown named AP SEC players of year

LSU quarterback Joe Burrow is a unanimous selection as the offensive player of the year on The Associated Press All-Southeastern Conference football team.The top-ranked Tigers also have the SEC’s coach of the year in Ed Orgeron and the newcomer of the year in freshman cornerback Derek...

OPINION

Martin Luther King Day is an Opportunity for Service

Find out where you can volunteer and make a difference to the community ...

Looking to 2020 — Put Your Vote to WORK!

Ronald Reagan, who turned his back on organized labor and started America’s middle-class into a tailspin, has recently been voted by this administration’s NLRB into the Labor Hall of Fame ...

How Putting Purpose Into Your New Year’s Resolutions Can Bring Meaning and Results

Only 4% of people report following through on all of the resolutions they personally set ...

I Was Just Thinking… Mama in the Classroom

I wrote my first column in 1988 for a local newspaper about a beloved Dallas guidance counselor and teacher that most students called “Mama” ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

City suspends Miami police captain who claimed to be black

MIAMI (AP) — The city of Miami on Wednesday suspended a Hispanic police captain who was strongly condemned after he publicly claimed he was black when fighting accusations that he has derided black people.The Miami Dade Branch of the NAACP had called for Police Capt. Javier Ortiz's...

Portrait of judge taken down because of his 'racist past'

HILLSBOROUGH, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina county has removed a portrait of a 19th-century state Supreme Court justice from a courtroom at the request of a judge who said it didn’t belong there because of the justice’s “racist past.” Senior Resident Superior Court...

Judge: Canadian tied to extremist group is 'very dangerous'

GREENBELT, Md. (AP) — A former Canadian Armed Forces reservist plotted with other members of a white supremacist group to carry out “essentially a paramilitary strike” at a Virginia gun rights rally, a federal prosecutor said Wednesday.U.S. Magistrate Judge Timothy Sullivan...

ENTERTAINMENT

Aerosmith drummer sues to rejoin band for Grammy honors

BOSTON (AP) — Aerosmith's drummer, Joey Kramer, is suing his bandmates because they won't let him play as the band is set to perform and be honored at Grammy events this week.Kramer, a founding member of the band launched in Boston, said in a lawsuit filed this month in Massachusetts...

Ratings dip for NFL conference championship games

NEW YORK (AP) — It's no secret, sports fans. Better games produce better ratings.That was the simple lesson for the NFL this week, after a dip in viewership for its conference championship games, compared to 2019. The Nielsen company said 42.8 million people watched the San Francisco 49ers...

Review: Guy Ritchie's 'The Gentlemen' is stale pint of ale

Guy Ritchie’s honor-among-thieves meta-caper “The Gentlemen,” with Matthew McConaughey, has all the tailored tweed suits and smoky atmosphere of a handsome scotch commercial. “The Gentlemen” might not be an ad, but Ritchie’s film is most assuredly selling...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

'Naughty boy': Monty Python star Terry Jones dies at 77

LONDON (AP) — Terry Jones, a founding member of the anarchic Monty Python troupe who was hailed by...

New rules could bump emotional-support animals from planes

The days of passengers bringing their pets on airplanes as emotional-support animals could be ending. The U.S....

Hallmark media CEO leaves, month after same-sex ad backlash

NEW YORK (AP) — The head of Hallmark's media business is leaving the company after 11 years, just a month...

US-French tax truce a respite in tense relations with EU

DAVOS, Switzerland (AP) — France will delay its tax on big tech firms like Google and Facebook in exchange...

'Naughty boy': Monty Python star Terry Jones dies at 77

LONDON (AP) — Terry Jones, a founding member of the anarchic Monty Python troupe who was hailed by...

Russia-Poland feud over history clouds Auschwitz anniversary

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Over the next several days, world leaders will gather twice to mark the 75th...

McMenamins
Bill Hardekopf

Tax time is here: Jan. 30 marked the first date that Americans can file their 2012 income taxes. This year, the IRS is tackling a problem that is growing rapidly: tax-related identity theft.

This type of ID theft occurs when thieves steal your social security number, file a false tax return and collect your refund. Thieves usually submit these fraudulent returns early in the filing season, before the legitimate taxpayer files.

Tax-related identity theft incidents are exploding. According to the latest GAO report, the IRS identified 47,730 incidents in 2008. That number grew five-fold in three years to 242,142 reports in 2011. Through just nine months of 2012, there were already 641,690 incidents.

This results in tremendous headaches for the people who have their identities stolen since it can take months to rectify the situation.

But it also causes incredible problems for the IRS. Last year, the IRS inspector general, J. Russell George, told CNBC that the IRS may issue up to $21 billion in fraudulent tax returns in the next five years.

In the past, the IRS has not had the manpower to keep up with this type of fraud. Thieves greatly outnumber IRS agents and are known to direct multiple fraudulent returns to one address, then change the address when agents catch on. One address in Lansing, Michigan received over 2,100 returns amounting to over $3.3 million in tax returns.

But the IRS is now stepping up their efforts to combat this tax-related identity theft.

* The IRS has doubled the number of employees assigned to tax-related ID theft in the past year to over 3,000.

* The agency has trained 35,000 employees who work with taxpayers to recognize identity theft indicators and help people victimized by identity theft.

* The IRS has activated dozens of new identity theft filters.

* A substantial increase in the number of identity theft investigations instituted by the IRS Criminal Investigations.

* The IRS is working with over 130 financial institutions to identify identity theft fraud schemes and block refunds from reaching the hands of identity thieves.

The IRS also recommends that consumers take the following steps to protect themselves from identity theft:

* Don't carry your Social Security card or any document(s) with your SSN on it.

* Don't give a business your SSN just because they ask. Give it only when required.

* Protect your financial information.

* Check your credit report every 12 months.

* Secure personal information in your home.

* Protect your personal computers by using firewalls, anti-spam/virus software, update security patches, and change passwords for Internet accounts.

* Don't give personal information over the phone, through the mail or on the Internet unless you have initiated the contact or you are sure you know who you are dealing with.



For more information go to www.lowcards.com

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