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Tax Time: Thank Honest Abe for 3 extra days!  by Tara


It’s been the buzz of all the elite social circles in America. You can hardly turn on the news without hearing about it. That’s right, citizens of the United States of America – the tax deadline in 2011 has been extended to April 18th. Sound the trumpets!!!

I know that there has been some confusion as to WHY the date has shifted from the standard deadline of April 15th. I’m here to help clear up the mystery and give you a tiny history lesson all at the same time!

The IRS is required by law to adjust the tax deadline if it falls on a holiday or a weekend. Hmmm, but according to my calendar April 15th lands on a Friday this year and I wasn’t aware of a holiday… Well, friends, this year the good folks in Washington D.C. will be celebrating Emancipation Day on Friday, April 15th therefore constituting that particular day a holiday (a D.C. holiday, not a federal one – so YES , Linn Area Credit Union WILL be open!). You see, normally Emancipation Day is on April 16th, the day in 1862 when President Lincoln signed the Compensated Emancipation Act, but this year they’re observing it on the 15th. Clear as mud? Yeah, for me, too.

As much as I enjoyed history class, I have to be honest and tell you that many things have failed to stick with me into my late twenties. The compensated Emancipated Act hyappens be one of those things. (Clearly, I’d fail miserably if I ever went on “Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader?”.) A quick Google search directed me towards my friend Wikipedia. Here’s the scoop:

The municipality of Washington, D.C., celebrates April 16 as Emancipation Day. On that day in 1862, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Compensated Emancipation Act for the release of certain persons held to service or labor in the District of Columbia. The Act freed about 3,100 enslaved persons in the District of Columbia nine months before President Lincoln issued his famous Emancipation Proclamation. The District of Columbia Compensated Emancipation Act represents the only example of compensation by the federal government to former owners of emancipated slaves.

On January 4, 2005, Mayor Anthony Williams signed legislation making Emancipation Day an official public holiday in the District. Each year, a series of activities is held during the public holiday including the traditional Emancipation Day parade celebrating the freedom of enslaved persons in the District of Columbia.

But what does all of this mean for you and me? Taxes won’t be due until Monday, April 18th. If you are due a tax refund, I’d file as soon as possible so you can get your own money back. If you owe taxes, you might be welcoming this opportunity to drag your feet just a couple of days longer!

Tell us – are you expecting a big tax return this year? What are you going to spend it on???

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tags:   |  posted under Tips, Taxes