Aug. 15 webinar offers truckers help with filing highway use tax

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Internal Revenue Service has issued a reminder for owners of most heavy highway vehicles that the time to file Form 2290, Heavy Highway Vehicle Use Tax Return, began July 1. The highway use tax applies to highway motor vehicles with a taxable gross weight of 55,000 pounds or more. This generally includes large trucks, truck tractors and buses. 

The IRS will host a “Understanding Form 2290-Heavy Highway Vehicle Use Tax” webinar at 11 a.m. Aug. 15. Pre-register for the free 60-minute webinar at www.webcaster4.com/Webcast/Page/1148/30891

Though some taxpayers have the option of filing Form 2290 on paper, taxpayers with 25 or more taxed vehicles must e-file Form 2290. The deadline to file and pay the tax is Sept. 3. The IRS encourages all owners to take advantage of the speed and convenience of e-file and paying any tax due. Visit IRS.gov for a list of IRS-approved e-file providers. For those who want face-to-face service, all IRS Taxpayer Assistance Centers now operate by appointment and taxpayers can call 844-545-5640 to schedule one. For more information about the highway use tax, visit the Trucking Tax Center at IRS.gov/trucker.

Farm Bureau applauds passage of HB 2437

SALEM — Gov. Kate Brown recently signed HB 2437, under which farmers will be able to clean out 3,000 cubit yards of dirt per mile of drainage in wetland areas. This is a substantial increase from the previous limit of 50 cubit yards of dirt. Known as the Farm Ditch Bill, the legislation puts new regulations in place that will allow farmers to clean more sediment from ditches with less red tape. Several environmentalist groups opposed the bill, saying it would interfere with fish habitat.

In an official statement on Aug. 9, the Oregon Farm Bureau said, “Farmers and the environment both won today.... We thank the governor for her deep study of the merits of the bill and the process that led to it and for signing HB 2437. We look forward to working with the governor to address her concerns during implementation. We thank the Nature Conservancy and Trout Unlimited for coming to the table, rolling up their sleeves, and helping solve this long-standing issue.”

More information on the bill is available from the Oregon Farm Family Association at www.oregonfamilyfarm.com/index.php/2019/02/05/capitol-watch-farm-ditch-bill-hb-2437.

Wind farm sponsors Haines Stampede Demolition Derby

UNION — To kick off American Wind Week, an annual event running this year Aug. 11-17 through the American Wind Energy Association, EDP Renewables’ Elkhorn Valley Wind Farm sponsored the Haines Stampede Demolition Derby on Aug. 10. As part of the event sponsorship, EDP Renewables provided box tickets for the derby to Union’s Elkhorn Valley Wind Farm operations staff and wind technicians

According to the release, Elkhorn Valley Wind Farm annually powers 26,000 Oregon homes. EDPR, which is headquartered in Houston, Texas, has paid a total of $8 million to Elkhorn Valley Wind Farm’s local landowners since it became operational in 2007, and the wind farm facilitated the creation of 101 full-time equivalent jobs during construction and 16 permanent positions throughout the site’s lifetime. Local governments have also received approximately $3.9 million from EDPR through 2018 and approximately $33.9 million has been spent within 50 miles of the wind farm through 2018.

Visit AmericanWindWeek.org to learn more about wind power and view a map of the week’s events. For more information on EDPR, go to www.edprnorthamerica.com.

Learn about government contracting

LA GRANDE — The EOU Small Business Development Center is hosting a free Capability Statements and Marketing to Federal Agencies class offered by the Government Contracting Assistance Program Aug. 23. If five or more people register, the class will be held from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Integrated Services Building, Room 147, 1607 Gekeler Lane, La Grande. Participants will learn how to prepare a Capabilities Statement and how to market to federal agencies. Registration is required by calling 541-789-7344. More information is also available from SBDC at 541-962-1532.

 

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