Feature Contributors

Farm tax information

During the last three weeks, Purdue Extension, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and Kansas State University have been hosting a virtual Tax Strategies for Midwestern Farm and Ranch Women series. 

Throughout the series, participants have gained a lot of knowledge about farm taxes.  Here are some tidbits of information shared during this 3-part webinar series.

What is the difference between a bookkeeper, tax preparer, and a certified public accountant (CPA)?  Typically, a bookkeeper pays bills, maintains financial records, categories or classifies information, produces invoices, and manages payroll.  A tax preparer prepares tax returns.  A CPA prepares financial statements and tax returns, performs audits, and can advise you on financial decisions.  Please realize that any tax professional with an IRS Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN) is authorized to prepare federal tax returns; however, bookkeepers and tax prepares do not have the authority to represent clients before the IRS. 

If you are looking for a tax professional, we recommend that you start looking for that professional early.  Do not wait until November or December to do so.  Look for a tax professional that has experience with farm returns because you want someone that understands the specialized tax rules associated with agriculture and understands the terms, lingo, and trends of agriculture production.  Be sure to ask the professional about their service fees and if they charge for calls and emails.  Working with your tax professional is a year-round process, but we do recommend having at least one face to face meeting annually.

You may wonder how long you should keep various documents utilized to help with preparing your taxes.  Tax returns, legal filings (entity documentations), and proof of asset tax basis (i.e. purchase price, improvements & depreciation) should be kept permanently. Supporting tax documents such as records of income or deductible expenses should be kept 3-7 years after the date filled.  These could be stored in a cloud based or other electronic base storage system as recommended by your accountant.  You may also decide to write notes on the receipts and invoices such as the tax line, date paid/mailed, and check number. Employment records such as payroll and earnings should be kept 4 years from when taxes are due or paid, whichever is later.

As always, it is a good practice to keep your business (farm) and personal tax documents separate.  This may involve having separate checkbooks.  Try to develop your own system to file everything in an organized method whether that be by vendor, date, etc.  It is best to always try to reconcile your financial records monthly.

Visit our homepage at www.extension.purdue.edu/putnam or you can contact the local Purdue Extension Office by calling 765.653.8411 for more information regarding this week’s column topic or to RSVP for upcoming events. It is always best to call first to assure items are ready when you arrive and to RSVP for programs. While many publications are free, some do have a fee. Purdue University is an equal access/equal opportunity institution. All times listed are Eastern Time.

 

Upcoming Events:

Dec. 18 – Extension Office closed for Professional Development

Dec. 22-Jan.1 – Extension Office closed for Winter Recess

Jan. 9 – Running for Office, 6-8pm, Fairgrounds, register by Jan. 4 at
https://tinyurl.com/PutGov24

Jan. 25 – Extension/SWCD Annual Dinner, Fairgrounds

 

Tips for low-cost holiday meals

Here are a few budget friendly tips to help save money on holiday meals:

  • Plan your menu carefully. Check what food and ingredients you already have and then make your shopping list. Look at online and print grocery store ads.
  • Prepare less. Think about having less food. This could include less of the expensive items and a smaller number of dishes served. However, consider keeping the holiday foods important to your family traditions on the menu.
  • Trim protein costs. A whole turkey is less expensive per serving than a turkey breast. Lean roast beef, pork loin and some types of fish, such as cod or flounder are lower cost options. Consider serving soup or a casserole that can extend your protein dollar.
  • Serve it simple. Sometimes serving dishes with less ingredients can be healthier as well as save time and money.
  • Shop smart. Beware of store displays that are designed to tempt you to buy things you didn't plan on purchasing. Using unit pricing to help compare different brands and different sizes of products can help you save money.
  • Cook ahead. Instead of purchasing some of the more expensive convenience items, many of your dishes can be prepared or partially prepared a day or two in advance: roasting a turkey, cranberry relish, cube and dry bread for stuffing, and pre-prep vegetables for salads and casseroles.
  • Make smart beverage choices. Water is easy on the wallet and people typically will drink less of the other beverages if they can use water to quench their thirst. Regular soda, energy or sports drinks, and other sweet drinks can be expensive and usually contain a lot of added sugar.
  • Get your money's worth of leftovers. Handle leftovers safely so that they can be used for meals in the days ahead. Always wash hands with soap and water before handling food. Leftovers should be stored within two hours of cooking. Divide leftovers into smaller portions and refrigerate in covered shallow containers so they cool quickly. Use refrigerated leftovers within 3 to 4 days or freeze for longer storage.

Source: Nebraska Food Calendar

 

Honey Mustard Green Beans

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Servings: 4 cups

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbs. yellow mustard
  • 3 Tbs. honey
  • 3 Tbs. vinegar
  • 4 cups green beans (canned, frozen or cooked from fresh)
    • Quick Tip: 4 cups of green beans is about 1.5 pounds fresh, or 16 ounces frozen, or 2 cans (15 ounces each) drained.

Directions:

  • For fresh green beans, cook until tender.
  • Heat a medium saucepan or skillet over medium-low heat. Add mustard, honey, and vinegar and mix well. Cook until sauce boils and becomes thick, about 10 minutes.
  • Add green beans and stir to coat evenly. Cook until beans are heated through. Serve warm.

Source: Purdue Nutrition Education Program

 

Visit our homepage at www.extension.purdue.edu/putnam or you can contact the local Purdue Extension Office by calling 765.653.8411 for more information regarding this week’s column topic or to RSVP for upcoming events. It is always best to call first to assure items are ready when you arrive and to RSVP for programs. While many publications are free, some do have a fee. Purdue University is an equal access/equal opportunity institution. All times listed are Eastern Time.

 

Upcoming Events:

Dec. 22-Jan.1 – Extension Office closed for Winter Recess

Jan. 9 – Running for Office, 6-8pm, Fairgrounds, register by Jan. 4 at https://tinyurl.com/PutGov24

Jan. 25 – Extension/SWCD Annual Dinner, Fairgrounds

Year-end income tax deduction options

Ho! Ho! Ho! Tis the season for giving and thinking to finalize tax considerations when reflecting on the past calendar year.

You may receive a return of a 50 percent direct credit to your tax bill when donating up to $200 per individual and $400 for couples filing jointly, given to an Indiana funded university. Because Purdue Extension is part of a state funded university, one can donate to the local Extension Office that would qualify. Therefore, a $100 contribution to the Purdue Extension-Putnam County program would cost one only $50. You can also specify in many cases how you would like the money to be used (i.e. 4-H, youth development, agriculture, natural resource, or health and human science educational programming or equipment, etc.). One could even specify the gift be used for a specific educational program or topic (i.e. 4-H STEAM, advanced Master Gardener workshop, nutrition education, workforce development workshop, etc.). Some limitations do exist. For example, funds donated for awards or scholarships would not be eligible for the additional direct state tax deduction. Give the Extension office a call and ask about this excellent way you can support community programs for minimal cost to your pocket due to the additional state tax credit.

Other options focus on income tax deductions rather than a direct credit. One example is that local Extension positions may be endowed with a family name or business for example. There are also family scholarships that may be set up to specifically benefit Putnam County or even multiple counties. Land or other assets may also be willed or donated to sponsor larger gifts as well. This can be done through the Purdue Foundation and also can be done over time and there is no percentage fee taken out of the gift like there are at many foundations. Another possibility for setting up an endowed instrument or contributing to an existing endowment is to utilize “required minimum distributions” (RMD) from IRA’s or other retirement funds that ultimately would otherwise be taxed. These RMD and the associated capital gains can be donated and the tax liability is removed for both the donor and the recipient who receives the full benefit.

One can also donate to the Putnam County Community Foundation (PCCF) and name the “Putnam County Fairground Endowment” as the recipient. While this option is not eligible for the 50% state tax credit that a state funded university or college provides, it is a great option in that the Putnam County Community Foundation is a 501(c)3 entity which provides opportunity for the general state and federal income tax deduction via a reduction in taxable income. And a donation to Fairgrounds endowment certainly helps Extension programs who often benefit because they use the Putnam 4-HFairgrounds facilities. If you desire to see the fairgrounds maintained for your children and grandchildren, this option will certainly benefit the facility. The goal for the Putnam County 4-HFairgrounds Endowment is one million dollars and this is a very important philanthropic effort to stay abreast in assuring a quality facility for future Putnam County Fairs. Additionally, it could be grain or livestock that is given to fund one of the Putnam County Community Foundation fund options. The Putnam County Community Foundation also manages four previously established scholarships that are set up to benefit Putnam 4-Hers where donations could be made as well.

Another endowment of the Putnam County Community Foundation is the Diana Thomas endowment that disperses funds each year that is used specifically for volunteer development for Putnam County 4-H volunteers. Specific to the Putnam County 4-H program, there is now the Putnam County 4-H Endowment via the Indiana 4-H Foundation. All of the aforementioned donation options except the direct state credit would apply to bothPCCF and Indiana 4-H Foundation endowments. The Indiana 4-H Foundation endowment will be critical to providing additional funding to the Putnam 4-H program in the future as funding has been rather flat over the past twenty or so years.

Visit our homepage at www.extension.purdue.edu/putnam or you can contact the local office by calling 765.653.8411 for more information regarding this week’s column topic or to RSVP for upcoming events. Office hours are Monday thru Friday from 8:00am-12:00pm and 1:00pm-4:00pm. Evening and lunch appointments are available, upon request. It is always best to call first to assure items are ready when you arrive and to RSVP for programs. While many publications are free, some do have a fee. All times listed are Eastern Time. Purdue University is an equal access/equal opportunity/affirmative action institution.

Upcoming events

Nov. 28, Dec. 5, 12, & 19 – Know Your Numbers, Know Your Options, 10 am – 12 pm, $20,  Virtual, Register at https://cvent.me/WPkAML

Nov. 28 – Wild Eats: Cooking Venison for Flavor and Safety Webinar, 6pm, register at https://tinyurl.com/wildeats23

Dec. 22 – Extension office closes for Christmas/New Year’s Holiday

January 2 – Extension office reopens.

4-Hers in third & sixth grades collect $25

Huge, life defining decisions are in play when one begins to plan and consider post high school education.

There are many options and choices that families have for consideration. Doing nothing or making no plans is a decision. Ideally, one would want to be the most informed as possible to make sound and wise decisions.

For many in primary or elementary school, post high school is far off in considering the future. The Putnam 4-H Education Pledge is a program with many elements that will bring information to families enabling an early start to building expectations for post high school education.

The term “post high school education” is used because the discussion should not be centered on a traditional four-year college degree. In fact, the labor markets are hungry for skilled labor that does not involve a college degree and leaving many in work force development pondering how to meet the needs. Furthermore, the program is centered on building the “expectation” of youth seeking some sort of post high school education and realizing the attainment of such education.

Several studies have shown that there are significant differences in those who have a post high school educational savings plan compared to those who do not have such a plan. Research supports that the money or funds being placed into such accounts is not as much a factor as is building the expectation that one has post high school educational goals and objectives to be met.

The Putnam 4-H Education Pledge will include workforce development and other professional experiences providing youth with life skills needed to find their niche in the work force. The Putnam County 4-H Council is sponsoring $25 payment to 529 plan funds for those in third and sixth grade as of 1/1/23 and plans to continue with future incentive programs for these grades.

Currently, less than eight percent of Putnam youth in grades K-12 have a 529 college savings plan, thus many families are missing out on a key state income tax direct credit. Research from Washington University in St. Louis suggests that youth who have a 529 college savings plan for post high school education are greater than 70 percent more likely to go and seek education after high school compared to those who do not. Having an account played a bigger role than the account value.

Only $25 will get one started with college savings using the College Choice 529 Savings plan that is recognized by the state of Indiana to receive a 20 percent direct income tax credit. Parents, grandparents, family etc. can make gifts obtaining a 20 percent direct credit back on state income taxes. The $25 Putnam 4-H match program will only be available to 4-Hers who were in grades three and six as of 1-1-23, completed a Putnam 4-H program and these individuals need to bring the UGift form associated with the account to receive the $25 into the account. Bingo… the child now has at least $50 saved for post high school education. Most importantly a path to savings and receiving gifts whereby others can receive direct tax credit is established.

Visit our homepage at www.extension.purdue.edu/putnam or you can contact the local office by calling 765.653.8411 for more information regarding this week’s column topic or to RSVP for upcoming events. Office hours are Monday thru Friday from 8:00am-12:00pm and 1:00pm-4:00pm. Evening and lunch appointments are available, upon request. It is always best to call first to assure items are ready when you arrive and to RSVP for programs. While many publications are free, some do have a fee. All times listed are Eastern Time. Purdue University is an equal access/equal opportunity/affirmative action institution.

Upcoming Events

Sept. 5 – Canning Garden Vegetables, Putnam Co. Fairgrounds, 7pm

Sept. 5 – Get WalkIN’ emails begin, email asmith22@purdue.edu to register by Sept. 1st

Sept. 11 – ServSafe Food Managers course and exam, register at https://cvent.me/l8DXv2

Sept. 11 – Venison Processing Workshop, Putnam Co. Fairgrounds, 6pm, RSVP required  at 765-973-9281

Sept. 18 – Home Food Preservation workshop, Parke Co. Fairgrounds, $15, 11am-3pm, RSVP required at 765-569-3176

Sept. 19 – Ladies Night Out: Livestock Edition, Putnam Co. Fairgrounds, $10, 6:30pm, register at https://tinyurl.com/WIASept23

About the Organization Women Who Care Putnam County

Are you looking for ways to help or support your community in 2023? 

 

Join us on March 15, 2023 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at The Whisk to learn more about Putnam County 100+ Women Who Care.

 

The Putnam County Women Who Care, cares deeply about our community.  The group comes together four times each year to make a positive impact by collectively giving.  The women come from all walks of life, all ages, all parts of the county, and even connects with women who grew up here but have moved away.  The group is open to all women — the more women who become involved, the greater our impact will be! Our goal is to grow to more than 100 women who want to become involved!

 

The group is part of a national movement and modeled after similar organizations located throughout the United States and Canada.  Putnam County is the third county in Indiana to form a Women Who Care group. 

 

Here is how it works:  The Putnam County Community Foundation helps women join the organization and sign commitments to donate $500 total during a calendar year. The first $100 commitment supports an unrestricted endowment administered by the Community Foundation for the Women Who Care organization to use to address future needs of the community.  In addition, every member pledges to donate $100 at each of four quarterly meetings (whether they attend or not) to be given to a Putnam County non-profit public charity selected at the meeting.  One hundred members means that four worthy local non-profits will each receive $10,000 during the year!  The larger the group, the greater the impact we will make. 

 

Putnam County Women Who Care allows busy women to become involved in giving back to the local community in a big way.  The 2023 dates are April 5, June 7, September 6 and November 1. At each meeting, members may nominate a charity by submitting her own name, a speaker’s name, and the name of a local 501(c)(3) non-profit public charity, church, or a government entity she would like to have included in a drawing.  At the meeting, three members’ submissions are drawn, and each will be given five minutes to provide an explanation of the organization and its services.  Three minutes will also be provided for questions if needed.  At the end of the presentations, members vote, ballots are counted, and a winner is announced.The winner will be notified and the donation will be presented within two weeks.

 

For a total of $500 a year, female philanthropists can have a huge impact on our community. Think about the difference a $10,000 donation would make to a local non-profit organization! Think about the impact of $40,000 or more in donations during one year. At the same time, the Women Who Care will be building an endowment that will provide permanent funding to benefit our community in the future! 

 

The Whisk will have a whiskey tasting and small plate for only $20 per person that wants to participate.

 

This will be an informal time to learn more about the organization as well as meeting current and future members.  Plus, this meeting will provide ample time to network and share what your passions are for the Putnam County Community.

 

If you have questions, feel free to email:100womenwhocarepc@gmail.com.

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