News | DrumhellerMail - Page #9
04032020Fri
Last updateFri, 03 Apr 2020 10am

Volunteer Income Tax program remains available for seniors and low income residents

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The Town of Drumheller FCSS is pleased to announce that we will continue to offer the VOLUNTEER INCOME TAX PROGRAM with a few important changes:

This program will remain available for seniors and individuals with modest income and simple tax situations for the 2019 tax season.
Participants must still meet the specified income thresholds of $35,000 for single and $45,000 for couples

Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 crisis, in-person tax clinics are no longer available. However, you can pick up a tax envelope at Freson Brothers or Riverside Value Drug Mart containing the required Revenue Canada Form 183.

Instructions:

1. Collect your tax envelope from Freson Brothers or Riverside Value Drug Mart

2. Complete Part A including your name, current address and phone number

3. Sign and date Part G on Form 183 – We must have your current information plus a signature in order to file your taxes (other information will be added by the tax preparer).

4. Put this form along with all tax slips into a separate envelope for each individual.

5. Seal the envelope and deposit it into the book return slot at the Drumheller Public Library.

Our generous volunteer, Bill Wulff will complete your taxes and e-file them with Revenue Canada. A paper copy of your completed return will be mailed to you. You will be contacted by phone if we need any additional information. In order for Mr. Wulff to provide this vital service, please do not contact him directly. Call Seniors Services if you have any questions at 403-823-1317.

Note that the Tax deadline has been extended to June 1st due to COVID-19 but it is still wise to submit your taxes as soon as you are able.


State of Local Emergency declared in Drumheller

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At noon on Friday, March 20, The Town of Drumheller declared a State of Local Emergency to help minimize the spread of COVID-19 in the community.
The State of Local Emergency gives the Town access to additional resources, and special powers under the Emergency Management Act including personnel, from other orders of government, if required.
“We’ve made this decision with the best interests of our community in mind. We know COVID-19 will come to Drumheller, we just don’t know when,” said Mayor Heather Colberg. “We want to prepare now and take every precaution in our power to protect the vulnerable in our community. This declaration is another step to protect our Town.”
Drumheller is not alone, and about a dozen Alberta communities, large and small, have made this declaration, including Airdrie, Strathmore, and Chestermere.
Emergency Management Director Darwin Durnie says the priority is maintaining essential and critical infrastructure.
“All Town services are still operating (except public recreation facilities). Water, sewer, waste services, and power are still operating and serving our community,” said Durnie. “We have implemented our infectious disease plan, separated staff to various town facilities to practice social distancing and implemented stand-by status for all employees, so resources are available if staff are required to self-isolate or get infected with the virus.”
He says the impact on the local economy will be immense.
“We are following and implementing measures as they are announced from other orders of government,” he said. “We are working daily with local businesses to assist them on how to keep their operations functional and we are proud of the many creative solutions we are hearing throughout the community such as home deliveries.”
Mayor Colberg stresses the importance of social spacing and self-isolating.
“I just want to remind everyone of the importance of self-isolating for 14 days if you aren’t feeling well and if you recently returned from vacation. Please stay home,” she said, adding that if you have friends or family returning from travels, help them out by picking up some groceries and delivering them to their home.
“We don’t know how long this is going to last but we know for the next few weeks we need to insist on social distancing. It’s our only option to minimize the spread.

Drumheller's Incident Commander stresses social distancing

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Incident Commander and Director of Emergency Management Darwin Durnie is stressing the importance of social distancing and adhering to the policies put in place by the province in regards to closures and gatherings.
The COVID -19 pandemic is moving quickly and on Thursday, March 19, the province announced the first death. He says the number one thing a person can do is maintain social distances.
“Maintaining social distances, washing and sanitizing your hands and self-isolation is a moral obligation,” said Durnie. “The more vigilant we are, the less time we will have to shut down.”
He says it is vitally important to follow the rules put in place by the provincial government. This includes self-isolating if you are a traveller returning to the country. Also, restaurants adhere to not allowing more than 50 patrons or half of their capacity, whichever is less in the facility, as well as bars and recreation facilities remaining closed.
“Any facility in the valley that doesn’t allow minors was ordered closed,” he said. “When we get to the point of understanding that closing could slow the spread of transmission, that’s being safe, that’s being caring and compassionate, that’s being careful.”
Over the past week, the federal and provincial governments have laid out several programs to assist residents and businesses as they cope with the economic hardships caused by the pandemic. Durnie notes that many of these efforts come through government programs, such as Employment Insurance. This is new territory for many residents who have never navigated these programs.
“Council is working with agencies such as the Chamber of Commerce, the Business Development Centre, and Community Futures to help people in the valley access these economic stimulants or assistance,” said Durnie. “Please contact the Chamber of Commerce and we will begin identifying navigators or coaches to help people move forward financially.”
He adds if there are people who are well versed in these processes, it may be an opportunity to volunteer.
“Let’s help each other navigate through this. Reach out to your neighbour.”'


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