BCTV: Fiscal Watchdogs in PA, DE, MD Demand Transparency in Coronavirus Aid

HARRISBURG – Pennsylvania Auditor General Eugene DePasquale, Delaware State Auditor Kathleen McGuiness and Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot Thursday called for full transparency on how hundreds of millions of dollars in federal aid for small businesses was already distributed and better accountability measures in the next stimulus package. Specifically, the three officials want a full accounting of every business in every state that received part of the $349 billion from the Paycheck Protection Program under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. “We need to make sure that every federal dollar is going where it was intended to do the most good to ease the economic

Cumberland Times News: Comptroller praises new city COVID-19 relief program

CUMBERLAND — Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot praised Cumberland officials Wednesday for their decision to create a small business COVID-19 relief fund. “Hats off to Cumberland, they are really doing something special with this relief fund which is sorely needed,” said Franchot. Cumberland Mayor Ray Morriss and the City Council agreed Tuesday to create a $106,000 fund to help small business owners who have been negatively impacted by the coronavirus outbreak. Franchot participated in a phone interview with the Cumberland Times-News on Wednesday afternoon. “I really appreciate the efforts by Cumberland to put some money aside for eligible businesses,” said Franchot. “I think that it is gre

Eye On Annapolis: More than 19,000 obtain health insurance through special enrollment period

The Maryland Health Benefit Exchange has announced that more than 21,500 residents have enrolled in coverage through the state’s health insurance marketplace, Maryland Health Connection. Earlier this month, the deadlines for both special enrollment periods were extended to accommodate growing health concerns as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and the new tax filing deadline. The coronavirus special enrollment period, which began a month ago and now runs through June 15, has resulted in more than 19,000 residents obtaining health coverage — 61 percent in Medicaid and the remainder in private insurance, with most of those qualifying for financial help to lower the cost of the plan. The

My Eastern Shore: Franchot: Tax relief will help citizens, businesses

EASTON — On Maryland’s traditional tax day, Comptroller Peter Franchot reminded citizens they have a 90-day, interest-free tax holiday during the coronavirus pandemic that has slammed the economy. But Franchot also reiterated the controversial advice he gave Marylanders on March 31: Take a bill-paying holiday, as well. “I have advised people, and I think correctly, to communicate with their creditors and ask them for forbearance in the next 90 days and try to negotiate something that keeps tax reserves for their own use, for their own family or for their own small business,” Franchot said in an exclusive interview with sThe Star Democrat on Wednesday, April 15. “It’s appealing to me because

Eye On Annapolis: Franchot: COVID-19 will have big impact on Maryland revenue

To provide Maryland’s fiscal leaders with an assessment of the state’s current revenue forecast due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Comptroller Peter Franchot and Bureau of Revenue Estimates (BRE) Director Andrew Schaufele outlined a potential shortfall of approximately $2.8 billion during the final quarter of Fiscal Year 2020, which ends June 30. The economic impact to the state’s business community and working families represents a loss of nearly 15 percent to the state’s annual general fund. The following are Comptroller Franchot’s remarks, as prepared for delivery during a virtual press briefing held via Facebook Live: “Before we discuss the economic impact, I must salute the steady leadership

Baltimore Business Journal: Franchot extends business tax deadlines for second time

"The coronavirus pandemic has become a public health disaster and an economic catastrophe," Peter Franchot said Tuesday. Maryland businesses struggling as they face an extended shutdown from the coronavirus pandemic will have a little more relief when it comes to paying taxes. Comptroller Peter Franchot said Tuesday that he is extending business-related tax filing deadlines to July 15, the second time he has announced an extension. Business taxpayers who file and pay by the extended due date will receive a waiver of interest and penalties. The comptroller on March 12 had extended the deadline for these tax filings to June 1. The federal government extended the deadline for filing 2019 income

The Daily Record: Franchot on economic impact of virus: ‘The storm has finally arrived’

ANNAPOLIS — The COVID-19 pandemic has sent the state’s economy and budget into one of the steepest nosedives in history, according to a top fiscal analyst for Comptroller Peter Franchot. Maryland revenues could take an estimated hit of $185 million per month during a virus response that includes a shuttering of businesses. Sales tax losses could amount to 59% of all sales tax revenue, or $250 million per month, according to preliminary estimates provided by Andrew Schaufele, director of the Bureau of Revenue Estimates at the Office of the Comptroller. All told, it’s a potential shortfall of approximately $2.8 billion during the final quarter of fiscal year 2020, which ends June 30. The econo

Maryland Reporter: FRANCHOT URGES MARYLANDERS FILING PAPER TAX RETURNS TO DO SO BY FRIDAY

State Comptroller Peter Franchot is urging Maryland taxpayers who will file paper income tax returns and expect a refund to make sure their return is postmarked by Friday, April 10. His office said it will temporarily stop processing paper tax returns on Wednesday, April 15 to reduce the number of state employees who must work on-site during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We want to make sure every Marylander due a refund gets it as soon as possible, especially during this economic crisis,” Franchot said in a statement. “We are taking this step to balance that goal with our commitment to protecting the health of our dedicated team processing those paper returns. Mailing your paper income tax retur

Salisbury Independent: Peter Franchot: Marylanders need government’s help

As our state, nation and the world battle the Covid-19 pandemic, there is much fear and uncertainty of what the future holds. We must first and foremost protect public health and I commend Gov. Larry Hogan and his administration for the leadership our state needs at this time to protect our citizens from this deadly virus. Maryland’s federal, state, county and local leaders are working collaboratively with our dedicated health care professionals and first responders to handle this unprecedented emergency. While our first priority must remain the physical wellbeing of our people, we must also immediately protect the economic wellbeing of our state. This is why as the state’s chief fiscal offi

Cecil Whig: Processing of paper tax returns to temporarily stop April 15

ANNAPOLIS — Comptroller Peter Franchot Monday, April 6, urged Maryland taxpayers seeking refunds to file electronically as soon as possible and announced that the agency will temporarily stop processing paper tax returns on April 15, in an effort to keep essential employees safe amid the spread of COVID-19. “We remain committed to getting refunds into taxpayers’ bank accounts during this economic crisis. However, we must balance that with our commitment to protecting the health of those dedicated essential employees who have continued reporting to work to process returns and distribute refunds in a timely manner,” Franchot said. Most taxpayers receiving refunds have already filed and the num

The Daily Record: As pandemic worsens, Md. prepares to confront a fiscal crisis

Maryland fiscal leaders are bracing for the economic impacts of a human health crisis that has effectively shut down business in the state in less than a month. Analysts, budget experts and economists have warned for the better part of a year that the economy and its unprecedented period of growth was likely to slow down and recession could come maybe as early as this year. That was before anyone heard the terms COVID-19 — a disease that so far has claimed the lives of nearly 100 Maryland residents — or social distancing or the stay-at-home orders that effectively closed large swaths of the state and national economy. Comptroller Peter Franchot said the sudden recession brought on by COVID-1

The Star Democrat:To help Maryland families and save our small businesses, we must all do our part

As our state, nation and the world battle the COVID-19 pandemic, there is much fear and uncertainty of what the future holds. We must first and foremost protect public health, and I commend Gov. Larry Hogan and his administration for the leadership our state needs at this time to protect our citizens from this deadly virus. Maryland’s federal, state, county and local leaders are working collaboratively with our dedicated health care professionals and first responders to handle this unprecedented emergency. While our first priority must remain the physical well-being of our people, we must also immediately protect the economic well-being of our state. This is why as the state’s chief fiscal o

Cumberland Times News: Comptroller: Scammers may try to steal stimulus checks

CUMBERLAND — Comptroller Peter Franchot warns Marylanders not to fall victim to scammers trying to steal stimulus checks. Swindlers are already making phone calls, sending text messages and phishing emails to individuals and tax preparers to obtain personal information to take the money. They are using language such as “in order to receive your/your client’s stimulus payment via direct deposit, we need you to confirm the banking information” and they are making phone calls or directing victims to click on a link that takes them to a website to enter personal banking information. In recent days, there has been an uptick in both individuals and tax preparers being targeted. “Do not share any p

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