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Hidalgo County Herald
Lordsburg, New Mexico
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July 18, 2014     Hidalgo County Herald
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HIDALGO COUNTY HERALD FRIDAY, JULY 18, 2014 3 SBDC Can I expense this? An accountant explains the world of write.affs By LISA FURGISON If you get a cup of coffee on your way to work, can you write it off as a business expense? Good question. A lot of business owners don't have the time (or interest) to decipher tax code. Yet, busi- ness expenses are a vital part of your financial picture. A lot of your day-to-day business ex- penses can be written off. In other words, you can use those business expenses to decrease the amount of taxes you have to pay. To help you figure out which expenses you can write off, we teamed up with CPA Ryan Raffensperger to get some straight answers. As an accountant, the most popular four words Raffensperger hears are: "Can I expense this?" So, together we've created a list of common business situations and the answer as to whether it results in a tax write-off. Situation #1: A business owner picks up a cup of coffee on the commute to work. Let's start with the question we posed at the beginning of the article: is that Starbucks run a write-off? Raffensperger says no. If you run through the drive-thru for your morning caffeine fix, it's a personal expense and isn't de- ductible. However, there's an al- temative option that can result in a write-off. "I'd advise the business .owner to purchase a coffee maker and buy the supplies and make the coffee at work because then it is deductible," Raffensperger says. Situation #2: Two business partners go out for drinks and talk business. Is this considered a business expense? Yes, but there's a catch, Raffensperger says. "The IRS limits the costs of meals and entertainment to 50 percent of the total cost. Assum- ing that the business partners truly did spend a majority of the time talking about true business, the full cost of the drinks would be included as a business expense and then reduced by 50 percent on the tax return," he says. Situation #3: A business owner takes a client out for din- ner to talk about an upcoming project. What if you want to wine and dine a client--is that deductible? Raffensperger says yes, but again the deduction is limited, to 50 percent on meals and entertain- ment. Situation #4: A business owner buys office supplies for a home office. Deductible? Yes. Provided that the supplies are used for busi- ness purposes, they are 1O0 per- cent deductible. However, if you are buying a ream of paper and only 60 percent is used for busi- ness purposes, only 60 percent is deductible, Raffensperger says. Situation #5: A business owner takes a trip for pleasure but has a 30-minute business meet- ing while away. Is the whole trip deductible because of your business meet- ing? No. The IRS says that your travel expenses are deductible if the primary purpose is business, even if some portion of the trip is for pleasure, Raffensperger says. Since the meeting was only 30 minutes, and not the sole purpose of the trip, the entire trip isn't deductible, but Raffensperger says you can write off the mile- age for your travel. Under current tax laws, you get 56 cents per mile. Situation #6: Your monthly cell phone bill used for both busi- ness and personal calls. Your business would be at a UPCOMING EVENTS DECLARATIONS OF CANDIDACY Ed Kerr I, Ed Kerr, hereby announce my candidacy for the office of Hidalgo County Commissioner, Position 1. Your continued support will be greatly appreciated. --Ed Kerr Warren Walter I, Warren Walter, hereby annoufice my candidacy for the office of Hidalgo County Sheriff, subject to the Republican Primary Election? Your vote of support will be very much appreciated. --Warren Walter Carmen Acosta I, Carmen Acosta, hereby announce my candidacy for the office of Probate Judge. I have 35 years of service in county government. I have also earned a Certificate of Completion on Probate from NMSU. It would be an honor and privilege to serve as your Probate Judge. I respectfully request your consideration in the 2014 Primary Election. --Carmen Acosta Saturnine "Nine" Madero I, Saturnine "Nine Madero, Democratic candidate for the office of Hidalgo County Sheriff, respectfully ask for your support in the upcoming Primary Election in June 2014. Thank you. --Saturnine "Nine" Madero Mark Thomas I, Mark Thomas, would like to announce my candidacy for the position of Magistrate Judge, subject to the Democratic Primary Elec- tion in June. Your support will be greatly appreciated. -- Mark Thomas Darr Reynolds Shannon I, Dart Reynolds Shannon would like to announce my candidacy for Hidalgo County Commissioner. Thank you to all for the past support, and please know that I work for you...Hidalgo County. -- Darr Reynolds Shannon Marianne (Mimi) Stewart I, Marianne (Mimi) Stewart, hereby announce my Democratic candidacy for the office of Hidalgo County Commissioner, Position 1. Thank you for your support. -- Marianne (Mimi) Stewart Joseph "J.J." Salines I, Joseph "J.J." Salinas, would like to announce my Democratic candidacy for Hidalgo County Commissioner, Position 2. Your sup- www.smithfordlordsburg.com port will be greatly appreciated. Paid by candidates -- Joseph "J.J." Salinas New Mexico Press Ilil Association Member Hidalgo County Herald (USPS 020697) is published weekly by Hidalgo County Herald in the City of Lordsburg, County of Hidalgo, 212 E. Motel Drive, Suite B, Lordsburg, New Mexico 88045-1948, 52 issues a year. Subscription rates vary Subscription rate is $40 per year by USPS mail, $25 per year by email. Requests for correc- tions and complaints concerning news and editorial content of the Hidalgo County Herald should be directed to the editor. For further information on the Hidalgo County Herald's approved grievance policies, readers may contact the publisher. Any unsolicited manu- scripts become the property of the Hidalgo County Herald and will not be returned. All information contained herein is copyrighted 2014 by the Hidalgo County Herald. All photos/stories, unless stated, are written by our staff. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Hidalgo County Herald, 212 E. Motel Drive, Suite B, Lordsburg, NM 88045- 1948 Periodicals Postage Paid at Lordsburg, New Mexico. PUBLIsHER/EDITOR: Brenda Hood ADVERTISING MANAGER: Glenda Greene PHONE: 575-542-8705 FAX: 575-542-8838 E-MAIL hcherald @aznex.net standstill without your cell phone, right? So, is it 100 per- cent deductible? Raffensperger says you have to break it into percent- ages. If 80 percent of your phone usage is for business-re- lated calls, then you can write off 80 percent of the bill. The world of write offs can get a little complicated, but hopefully these tips give you enough accounting advice to plan ahead. Of course, a skilled accountant can help you figure out what you can and can't write off. An archive of SBDC Busi- ness Reports can be found at http://www.grantcountybeat. com/index.php/archived-items Western New Mexico University's Small Business De- velopment Center offers assis- tance to entrepreneurs who are starting a business or wanting to expand an existing business. These services are available at no cost. Call 538-6320 for an appointment with a business ad- visor, or email sbdc@wnmu.edu. The SBDC office is located in Watts Hall at 500 18th Street, at the inter- section of Swan and Silver Heights Blvd. An appointment at your office is available by re- quest. More information may be found at www.nmsbdc .corn/ silvercity/index.html. Contact the SBDC office to get details about the following event: July 20-24, New Mexico Economic Development Course August 12, Government Contracting and SAM Registra- tion Process Letters to the Editor The Hidalgo County Herald urges readers to voice their opinions by writ- ing in. Letters can be mailed to 212 E. Mo- tel Drive, Ste. B, or can be e-mailed to hcherald @ aznex .net. Letters should include ideas, viewpoints, criticism and news analysis that encourage discussion on issues that have an impact on the community. Facts must be annotated. Letters that contain information that cannot be easily verified, libelous statements or name calling will be rejected. Letters should be no longer than 250 words. An author may have a letter or guest opinion every 30 days. Thankyou Dear Brenda; Thank you for admitting Tom McDonald's column of July 4 " American Patriotism" on the HH. His perspective on different ways to serve the U.S. and be an American patriot other than mili- tary service is one not often thought of or given attention. Although I am a Viet Nam vet- eran myself, since that era I be- lieve I have served the U.S. in many other ways that are equally important as have so many other millions of Americans in their daily jobs. Sincerely, Joel Orona, Ph.D. Chandler, AZ I.A FRONTEILA. _____2 , .,, ,:o PREVENTION What are Some.?acP., Taking prescription drugs that are not prescribed-0r taking them in any way other than directed by a doct0r-is con- sidered misuse or abuse and can lead to dangerous outcomes. Additionally, using another person's medicati(m is against the law. Sharing your prescription medi- cines with another person is also illegal and could lead to devastating results. (This is considered a fact statement in regards to last wee/ds Myth article) FOR MORE INFORMATION REGARDING PRESCRIPTION PREVENTION SER- VICES, SUBSTANCE ABUSE TREAT- MENT, OR FOR SAFE DISPOSAL'OF PRESCRIPTION MEDICATION, PLEASE CONTACT EDGAR GOMEZ AT (575) 542- 3304 OR EDGAR.GOMEZ@LAFRoNTERA.ORG Winds do damage at Transfer Station cou00,sy photos High winds and rain last week caused some damage around Hidalgo County. Above, the wind de- stroyed two 14-foot overhead doors at each end of the building below deck at the Hidalgo County Transfer Station. Part of the wall at the upper deck was also damaged during the storm. Continued from Page 1 Fit Camp Fit Camp, a boot camp style exercise group, is held Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6:00 p.m. at LHS football field. The free classes are open to the public. For more information contact Fabiola Cane at 575-542-2356. Literacy Program The Hidalgo County Lit- eracy Program (HCLP) offers 1- to-l/class tutoring for basic read- ing, language, math and com- puter skills. HCLP also offers tu- toring in English Second Lan- guage (ESL) and pre-GED/GED prep. Office location is 317 E. 4 m St., Ste. B. Entrance to HCLP is located off the alley, second door to the right. Contact Program Di- rector, Sherri Arredondo at 575- 313-7738 or 575-542-9407, email hclp@aznex.net Emergency food boxes Emergency Food Boxes are available to families in need at La Frontera NM, located at 332 E Motel Dr in Lordsburg. To get a box, stop in anytime Monday through Friday from 8:30 am to 12 noon. For more information about this or other food programs in Hidalgo County, call Christy at 520-507-0455. Wednesday Bible Study th The Church of Christ (5 & Pyramid) hast started Wednesday Bible study again at noon. The study hour is open to men and women. For more information contact Karen McDonald at 575- 313-5963 or Lindy Kerr at 575- 538-8446. Step Aerobics The Active and Alive Hot Steppers Aerobics class is held at 6 PM at the Hidalgo County Learning Center Tuesday and Wednesday. For more information call Fabiola Cane 575-542-2356. Line Dancing The Crooked Halos ad- vanced line dance group is meets at the Senior Citizens Center from 6:15 to 7:30 p.m. on Monday and Thursday evenings. The Sassy Sunflowers beginning line dance group is meets at the Senior Citizen's Center from 8:30 to For Appointments call 575-542-8705 o email hcherald@aznex'net PASSPORT PHOTOS 000000o,o00s12 Same-Day- Service Available at the Hidalgo County Herald-212 East Motel Drive, Lot&burg, NM 9:30 a.m. every Wednesday morn- ing. Bring your water and come join in the fun for some low im- pact exercise, good music and fun! It's free and no experience is necessary. For more information call Fabiola Cane 575-542-2356. Suicide prevention Suicide Prevention meetings are held the first Monday of each month at the Hidalgo Complex in Lordsburg at 7:00 p.m. The public is invited. Veteran photos The Hidalgo County Her- ald is currently accepting pho- tos of veterans to be added to our existing database of more than 300 photos. If you or your loved one was not included in the 2005 collection of photos, please bring your photo to the Herald on Mondays from 9 to 2 or Tuesdays from 9 to 5 p.m. You will also need to provide branch of armed forces served and war or conflict the veteran served in, if applicable. If you are unsure whether or not the photo is on file, call 575-542- 8705. Fuente de Vide Church Welcome to Fuente de Vida Church at 1032 Motel Drive. Worship is every Sunday at 11 AM and Wednesdays at 7 PM. Services are open to everyone. Water Aerobics Active and Alive Water Aero- bics will be held at the Comfort Inn on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. For more information call Fabiola Cane 575-542-2356. ISUMMER SERVICE SPECIALS TRANSMISSION SERVICE Includes a 27-point vehicle inspection a Car Wash $T129'95" ax and shop supplies not included LUBE, OIL & FILTER Includes a 27-point vehicle inspection ,0034,95" Ta shop supplies not included ALIGNMENT. or Details Includes a 27-point vehicle inspection 00oo,,oo, $S9 9S' ev Loc@ Tax and shop supplies not included SMITH ,,,.,,,, FO R D .,,,..,.,.,,-,,.,...,,,.. Come in and take a look at our full line of new Fords. If we don't have it we can get it. Freeport Employees: Ask about our Special Pricing on New Fords Check our our great selection of Tires at competitive prices!