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In This Edition...

  • Covering Preexisting Conditions 

  • USDA Farm Service Agency Program Deadline Extensions

  • Beat ID Thieves to Your Tax Return

  • Emerald Ash Borer

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Ron's Recap: February 1, 2019  

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Hello! Welcome to another edition of Ron's Recap for the 104th Legislative Session. This periodic e-newsletter will keep you up-to-date on news from the Capitol and provide other helpful information. Feel free to contact Ron if you have any questions about information in this email, if you have an opinion on a legislative issue, or if you have a problem with a state agency. 

Covering Preexisting Conditions 

Last week Tuesday, I joined my colleagues in passing Assembly Bill 1, the Pre-Existing Condition Guaranteed Coverage Act. 

This bill contains three main consumer-protection components. First, the bill prohibits those with a pre-existing medical condition from being denied health insurance coverage. Second, the bill would bar healthcare providers from denying services required to treat a condition. Finally, the bill prevents insurance companies from charging higher premiums based on an individual’s medical condition or health status. Wisconsin would become one of only five states that offers all three protections.

Covering patients with pre-existing conditions is personal to me. My mother passed away after a twenty-two year battle with cancer. If she didn’t have access to treatment and care she would have missed graduations, weddings, and the birth of her granddaughter. Passing this bill ensures that those who need care will get it and hopefully, as a result, families will have their loved ones around for as many birthdays and milestones as possible.

The bill passed the Assembly 76-19. It now goes to the Senate for approval before onto the Governor.

Click here or on the image below to see why I believe this bill is so important. 

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USDA Farm Service Agency Announces Program Deadline Extensions

USDA’s Farm Service Agency extended deadlines on many of its programs because of the government shutdown and the emergency nature of many of the programs. Below are updated deadlines:

*** For details on all program deadlines and extensions, view FSA National Notice CM-807

Farm Programs

  • Market Facilitation Program
    • Deadline to apply extended to Feb. 14, 2019
  • Marketing Assistance Loans
    • If loan matured in December 2018, settlement date extended to Feb. 14, 2019
    • Peanut loans or Loan Deficiency Payments - loan availability date now Feb. 28, 2019
  • Emergency Conservation Program
    • Performance reporting due Feb. 14, 2019
  • Livestock Forage Disaster
    • 2018 application for payment due Feb. 28, 2019
  • Emergency Assistance Livestock, Honey Bees, and Farm-raised Fish Program
    • Notice of loss due Feb. 14, 2019
  • Livestock Indemnity Program
    • Notice of loss due Feb. 14, 2019
  • Non Insured Crop Disaster Assistance Program
    • Submitting 2019 application for coverage due Feb. 14, 2019
    • Notice of loss for 72-hour harvest and grazing (as applicable) due Feb. 14, 2019
    • Notice of loss for prevented planting and failed acres due Feb. 14, 2019
    • Applications for payment for 2018 covered losses due Feb. 14, 2019
  • Tree Assistance Program
    • Notice of loss due Feb. 14, 2019
  • Acreage Reporting
    • January reporting deadlines extended to Feb. 14, 2019 (Applicable crops for Wisconsin include apples, caneberries, cherries, cranberries, currants, hops, huckleberries, pears, and strawberries.
    • Reporting of all honeybee colonies in all counties has also been extended to Feb.14, 2019 for Wisconsin.

                 ** Deadline to  report 2019 Maple Sap remains Feb. 1

For inquiries related to these programs or any not listed above, please contact your local USDA Service Center.

Questions?
Please contact your local FSA Office by clicking here.

Beat ID Thieves to Your Tax Return

Tax Season is just around the corner, and for many of you, that means getting your tax return. However, ID thieves are out there to steal your information as well as your tax return. The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection released steps you can take to protect yourself from identify thieves. 

  1. File early in the season to get a jump on a thief who may have your information. 
  2. If filing your return online, make sure your operating system and antivirus software are up to date, and set up strong passwords for your tax software login. 
  3. If you are working with a tax preparation service and witness any questionable practices, report the suspicious behavior to DATCP.

You can read the full article by clicking here.  

 

Emerald Ash Borer

  • Winter is an ideal time to look for signs of Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) infestations because woodpeckers will leave easily seen indicators that they’ve been searching for EAB larvae in infested ash trees.  Identifying early signs of EAB infestations can help property owners address the problem before their trees become hazardous, or too heavily infested for insecticide treatments to be successful.
  • A reminder – for when the weather warms up a bit – that DNR offers a listing of family-friendly events scheduled at state parks and recreational properties on the Get Outdoors! events calendar.