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IRS phone scam targeting this area

Wildlife’s new purchasing system

DENVER — Colorado Parks and Wildlife is pleased to announce the arrival of a new integrated purchasing system, which will serve as a one-stop shop for all CPW products, including hunting and fishing licenses, campsite reservations, OHV and snowmobile permits, and more. The transition to the new purchasing system will begin January 1, 2018. During this time, we will have a period of several days when all CPW purchases will be unavailable. The changeover to the new system will cause a temporary shut down of purchasing services at all CPW offices, parks, licensing agents, online and phone sales. Hunters may reach out to a regional or area office if you run into licensing issues.

During the changeover to our new system, customers will not be able to make any purchases online or at our offices, parks or sales agencies. All purchases will be impacted, including:

All camping, cabin and yurt reservations

Online hunter education, including mountain lion exams Hunting reservation system A

ll license purchases (Including waterfowl stamps)

Habitat stamps

Online park passes

All registration renewals Online retail orders

Online license purchases

CPW suggests that customers prepare now by taking the following steps: Plan ahead, buy ahead. Customers are urged to plan ahead and buy ahead for courses, licenses, reservations or gifts that can be purchased or reserved in advance. If you are a camping customer planning to camp in the next 6 months, book your reservations now. If you are an established mountain lion hunter in Colorado and know exactly when you plan to hunt, purchase your winter 2017-2018 license before December 31, 2017.

Create a new CID: CPW strongly recommends that any hunter that has never hunted or fished in Colorado create a customer identification number (CID) in our system in advance of this system update. This will ensure a smooth transition into the new system. New hunters are able to create an account and receive a CID during business hours by calling any CPW office or the main telephone number, 303-291-1192.

Prepare for new account requirements: Please ensure every customer in your family or group, including children, have a separate and valid email address. Each individual making a purchase, including youth licenses, will need an individual account in the system.

For a full list of Frequently Asked Questions and to learn more about what the new integrated purchasing system means for you, visit cpw.state.co.us/cpwshop.

Winter generator usage: keep safety in mind

ALEXANDRIA, VA — Generators are critical during severe weather events, when the power can go out, as well as bringing power to remote job sites and in disaster recovery and emergencies. As we move into the upcoming “snow season”, a time when homeowners’ electricity can go out due to snow and ice, the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI), an international trade association representing small engine, utility vehicle, and outdoor power equipment manufacturers reminds home and business owners to keep safety in mind when using generators.

“It’s important to follow all manufacturer’s instructions when using one,” said Kris Kiser, President and CEO of OPEI. “For instance, never place a generator in your garage or in your home. The generator should be a safe distance from your home and not near an air intake.”

More tips include:

Make sure equipment is in good working order before you start using it.

Review the owner’s manuals for your equipment if possible (you can look manuals up online if you cannot find them) so you can operate your equipment safely.

Have the right fuel on hand.

Ensure portable generators have plenty of ventilation. Generators should NEVER be used in an enclosed area or placed inside a home or garage, even if the windows or doors are open. Place the generator outside and away from windows, doors, and vents that could allow carbon monoxide to come indoors.

Keep the generator dry.

Only add fuel to a cool generator.

Plug in safely. It’s best to plug in appliances directly to the generator. If you must use an extension cord, it should be heavy-duty and designed for outdoor use.

Install a transfer switch. A transfer switch connects the generator to your circuit panel and lets you power hardwired appliances. Most transfer switches also help you avoid overload by displaying wattage usage levels.

Do not use the generator to “backfeed” power into your home electrical system. Trying to power your home’s electrical wiring by “backfeeding” – where you plug the generator into a wall outlet – is reckless and dangerous. You could hurt utility workers and neighbors served by the same transformer. Backfeeding bypasses built-in circuit protection devices, so you could damage your electronics or start an electrical fire.

Install a battery operated carbon monoxide detector in your home or business.

For more safety tips for outdoor power equipment visit http://opei.org/safety-tips/

IRS phone scam targeting this area

WASHINGTON — Aggressive and threatening phone calls by criminals impersonating IRS agents remain a major threat to taxpayers. The IRS has seen a surge of these phone scams as scam artists threaten police arrest, deportation, license revocation and other things in the World Journal’s area. The IRS reminds taxpayers to guard against all sorts of con games that arise during any filing season.

“Don’t be fooled by callers pretending to be from the IRS in an attempt to steal your money,” said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. “If you are surprised to be hearing from us, then you’re not hearing from us. There are many variations. The caller may threaten you with arrest or court action to trick you into making a payment,” Koskinen added. “Some schemes may say you’re entitled to a huge refund. These all add up to trouble.”

Protect Yourself

Scammers often alter caller ID numbers to make it look like the IRS or another agency is calling. The callers use IRS titles and fake badge numbers to appear legitimate. They may use the victim’s name, address and other personal information to make the call sound official. They may also leave “urgent” callback requests through phone “robo-calls,” or via a phishing email.

Here are five things the scammers often do but the IRS will not do. Any one of these five things is a tell-tale sign of a scam.

The IRS will never:

1. Call to demand immediate payment, nor will the agency call about taxes owed without first having mailed you a bill.

2. Demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.

3. Require you to use a specific payment method for your taxes, such as a prepaid debit card.

4. Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.

5. Threaten to bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.

If you get a phone call from someone claiming to be from the IRS and asking for money and you know you do not owe taxes:

1. Do not give out any information and hang up immediately.

2. Contact TIGTA to report the call. Use their “IRS Impersonation Scam Reporting” webpage. You can also call 800-366-4484.

3. Report it to the Federal Trade Commission. Use the “FTC Complaint Assistant” on FTC.gov. Please add “IRS Telephone Scam” in the notes.

If you get a phone call and you know you owe, or think you may owe tax:

1. Do not give out any information and hang up immediately.

2. Call the IRS at 800-829-1040. IRS workers can help you. Stay alert to scams that use the IRS as a lure.

Tax scams can happen any time of year, not just at tax time. For more, visit “Tax Scams and Consumer Alerts” on IRS.gov. Each and every taxpayer has a set of fundamental rights, The Taxpayer Bill of Rights, they should be aware of when dealing with the IRS. Explore your rights and the IRS obligations to protect them on the website: IRS.gov.

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