Page 14 THE EVERETT ADVOCATE – FRiDAy, July 24, 2020 IRS unveils “Dirty Dozen” list of tax scams T he Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently announced its annual “Dirty Dozen” list of tax scams with a special emphasis on aggressive and evolving schemes related to COVID-19 tax relief, including the Economic Impact Payment (EIP). This year the Dirty Dozen focuses on scams that target taxpayers. The criminals behind these bogus schemes view everyone as potentially easy prey. The IRS urges everyone to be on guard all the time and look out for others in their lives. The IRS urges taxpayers to refrain from engaging potential scammers online or on the phone. “Tax scams tend to rise during tax season or during times of crisis, and scam artists are using the pandemic to try stealing money and information from honest taxpayers,” said IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig. “The IRS provides the Dirty Dozen list to help raise awareness about common scams that fraudsters use to target people. We urge people to watch out for these scams. The IRS is doing its part to protect Americans. We will relentlessly pursue criminals trying to steal your money or sensitive personal ~ LEGAL NOTICE ~ CITY OF EVERETT PURCHASING DEPARTMENT financial information.” “To try to avoid becoming a victim of a scam, education, awareness and healthy skepticism are key”, said the Special Agent in Charge of the IRS Criminal Investigation Division in the New England Region, Kristina O’Connell. “If you find yourself falling victim to any of these schemes, report it immediately. IRS Criminal Investigation and its law enforcement partners investigate these cases so the criminals perpetrating the schemes might be brought to justice.” Taxpayers are encouraged INVITATION FOR BIDS Sealed bids for furnishing the following ITEMS will be received at the Office of the Purchasing Department, City Hall, 19 Norman Street, Everett, MA 02149, until the time specified below at which time the bids will be publicly opened and read: ITEM Bid: 2020 Mill and Overlay Street Sections BID OPENING August 13, 2020, 10:00 AM Local Time Work shall consist of milling and overlaying existing sections of streets at various locations throughout the City of Everett at the direction of the Executive Director of Public Works & Engineering or his representative. A table of the street names and lengths is included in section 00900 Supplementary Specification. Bidders submitting bids on this project shall be prepared to complete the work to be done under this contract within the 2020 construction season. Any contract extensions shall be at the discretion of the Executive Director of Public Works & Engineering only. Specifications and bid forms may be obtained at the Offices of Purchasing Agent, by emailing a request to bids@ci.everett.ma.us starting: July 29, 2020. Bids will be opened in the Office of the Purchasing Agent, 19 Norman Street, Everett, MA 02149 on August 13, 2020 at 10:00 A.M., local time. Each Bid must be accompanied by a bid security consisting of a BID BOND, CASH, or, CERTIFIED CHECK issued by a responsible bank or trust company in the amount of 5% of the bid price. All bidders must be pre-qualified by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation as follows. The MassDOT Prequalification Office will provide the City with an official and a waiver contractor bid list for all contractors prequalified in the specified class of work within the parameters of this project. Only those bidders listed in the official or waiver contractor lists issued by the MassDOT Prequalification Office will be allowed to obtain an official proposal book. All bids for this project are subject to applicable public bidding laws of Massachusetts, including G.L. c.30, § 39M, as amended. Attention is directed to the minimum wage rates to be paid as determined by the Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development and the weekly payroll record submittal requirements under the provisions of Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 149, Section 26 through 27D inclusive. There will be no pre-bid meeting for this project. The successful bidder must furnish a 100% Performance Bond and a 100% Payment Bond in the contract sum with a corporate surety approved by the City. Selection of the contractor will be based upon bidder qualifications, including evidence of past performance in similar projects, and bid price. The contract will be awarded to the bidder deemed by the awarding authority to be the lowest responsible and eligible bidder. The bidder agrees that its bid shall be good and may not be withdrawn for a period of 30 days, Saturdays, Sundays and legal holidays excluded, after the opening of the bids. The City reserves the right to waive any informalities, to accept or reject, in whole or in part any or all bids, or take whatever other action may be deemed to be in the best interest of the City. City of Everett Robert Moreschi Chief Procurement Agent Phone: 617-394-2288, Fax: 617-394-2339 July 24, 2020 to review the list in a special section on IRS.gov and to be on the lookout for these scams throughout the year. Taxpayers should also remember that they are legally responsible for what is on their tax return even if it is prepared by someone else. Consumers can help protect themselves by choosing a reputable tax preparer. The IRS plans to unveil a similar list of enforcement and compliance priorities this year as well. An upcoming series of press releases will emphasize the illegal schemes and techniques businesses and individuals use to avoid paying their lawful tax liability. Topics will include such scams as abusive micro-captives and fraudulent conservation easements. Here are this year’s Dirty Dozen scams: Ph i sh i ng : Taxpayers should be alert to potential fake e-mails or websites looking to steal personal information. The IRS will never initiate contact with taxpayers via e-mail about a tax bill, refund or EIP. Don’t click on links claiming to be from the IRS. Be wary of e-mails and websites − they might be nothing more than scams to steal personal information. IRS Criminal Investigation has seen a tremendous increase in phishing schemes using e-mails, letters, texts and links. These phishing schemes are using keywords, such as “coronavirus,” “COVID-19” and “Stimulus,” in various ways. These schemes are blasted to large numbers of people to get personal identifying information or financial account information, including account numbers and passwords. Most of these new schemes are actively playing on the fear and unknown of the virus and the stimulus payments. (For more info see IR-2020-115.) Fake charities: Criminals frequently exploit natural disasters and other adverse situations, such as the current COVID-19 pandemic, by setting up fake charities to steal from well-intentioned people trying to help in times of need. Fake charity scams generally rise during times like these. Such fraudulent schemes normally start with “DIRTY DOZEN” | SEE PAGE 15

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