Tax relief, other assistance grows

Friday, May 16, 2003

The Internal Revenue Service granted a series of tax relief measures Thursday for Missouri residents whose communities were struck by severe storms and tornadoes beginning May 4.

The measures includes extension of tax filing and payment deadlines, and abatement of interest and penalties. Taxpayers can make appointments to get free assistance from an IRS specialist on how to file an amended tax return. A subsequent tax refund from an amended return could arrive in a few weeks.

The state also is offering tax help by giving businesses and individuals affected by the recent tornadoes a 60-day grace period to pay state taxes.

The automatic extension will apply to tornado victims who cannot file taxes due between May 1 and June 30, the state Revenue Department said Thursday. No penalties or late fees will be assessed until 60 days after the taxpayer's original due date.

Federal disaster assistance was also expanded Thursday to include certain costs for reparing or replacing disaster-damaged infrastructure and public facilities in nine Missouri counties, including Cape Girardeau County. The designation helps government entities, public utilities and certain nonprofit organizations pay for eligible costs resulting from recent storms.

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