JULY 15, 2011

Longtime Arizona School Boards Association Executive Director retires

Panfilo Contreras retires after nearly 25 years of service to Arizona School Boards

PHOENIX – The Board of Directors of the Arizona School Boards Association on Monday announced that Panfilo Contreras, executive director of ASBA since 1998, retired as of July 8, 2011. Prior to becoming executive director of ASBA, Contreras was on the school board of the Flowing Wells Unified School District for nearly 12 years. He also served on the ASBA board of directors in various leadership positions for four years, including as president of ASBA in 1995, before becoming executive director.

“On behalf of the ASBA Board, I want to thank Panfilo for his 13 years of service and for the many positive things he has done for ASBA,” said the association’s President Dee Navarro. “We wish Panfilo the very best in his future endeavors and well-deserved retirement. We will immediately begin a search for a dynamic executive director to lead ASBA’s efforts to improve education in Arizona through quality advocacy and leadership. ASBA is a vital voice in ensuring that Arizona’s public education community is represented and heard.”

Prior to joining ASBA, he was Program Manager for the Family Assistance Administration of the Department of Economic Security in Tucson for 18 years.

A native Arizonan, Contreras has been active in many community organizations. He was a member of the Tucson-Pima Metropolitan Education Commission and served on the Tucson Mayor’s Education Task Force. He is past president of the Tucson Chapter of the Arizona Hispanic Community Forum. Other affiliations include president on the board of directors of the Hands Across the Border Foundation; executive committee and board of directors of the Arizona Business and Education Coalition; the oversight board of Expect More Arizona; and the board of directors of the American School Foundations Alliance.

JULY 14, 2011

The Obama recovery kills job creation … again

PHOENIX – If May’s job numbers weren’t bad enough, according to the monthly jobs report, the U.S. economy created a measly 18,000 new jobs in June raising the unemployment rate from 9.1 to 9.2 percent. The unemployment rate is now two full points higher than it was in the Department of Labor’s report in January 2009 – the first month of the Obama Presidency.

“This is not simply a “bump” on the road to recovery. President Obama's economic policies have totally failed,” said Arizona Republican Party Chairman Tom Morrissey. “Continuing the President’s policies will only drive up the unemployment rate further. We cannot afford these disastrous policies any longer.”

In spite of the horrible price the American public is paying for their failed policies, the Democrat entitlement crowd continues to pressure the Obama Administration for more government intervention, increased government spending and higher taxes. Additional interference into private enterprise from the government will only increase the downward economic spiral resulting in higher unemployment, more debt and fewer jobs. In a speech on the floor of the Senate on March 6, 2006, then-Senator Barack Obama said, “You don’t raise taxes in a recession.” Obviously, the left-wing extremists of his party have convinced the President to change course – yet again.

“It’s time to limit government’s involvement in the economy. This means lowering taxes, reducing regulations and creating jobs,” said Arizona Republican Party Chairman Tom Morrissey. “It doesn’t get any clearer: Obama’s failed economic policies punish small business and kill job creation. I strongly support our Republican Congressional position that calls for spending cuts with no new taxes.”

JULY 13, 2011

Get a Fresh Start at the Phoenix IRS Office on Saturday, July 16

irs logoPHOENIX – Taxpayers who may have difficulty getting into an IRS Taxpayer Assistance Center during normal business hours Monday through Friday can visit the Phoenix IRS office located at 4041 N. Central Ave., on Sat., July 16, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The IRS will host a Saturday Open House this summer to provide free assistance to taxpayers who need help getting information required to file their tax returns. Help with account questions, such as collection or examination issues, is also available during the Open House. In some instances virtual assistance will be offered, connecting by telephone with IRS employees for help who are working in other offices open that day around the country.

The Open House will be offering help and advice to people who want to get a fresh start with their tax liabilities. “We are making fundamental changes to our lien system and other collection tools that will help taxpayers and give them a fresh start,” IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman said. “These steps are good for people facing tough times, and they reflect a responsible approach for the tax system.”

On Sat., July 16 taxpayers will be able to learn about changes which include:
• Adjustments to IRS Lien Policies
• Significantly increasing the dollar threshold when liens are generally issued, resulting in fewer tax liens
• Making it easier for taxpayers to obtain lien withdrawals after paying a tax bill
• Withdrawing liens in most cases where a taxpayer enters into a Direct Debit Installment Agreement
• Creating easier access to Installment Agreements for more struggling small businesses
• Expanding the streamlined Offer in Compromise program to cover more taxpayers

In addition to the normal array of services, limited help preparing tax forms is available on a first-come, first-served basis in most locations. Over 35,000 taxpayers attended similar Open House events last year. Other than here in Albuquerque, a list of all the 74 Open House locations is available on www.IRS.gov.