I. Introduction: This TIR announces automatic extensions of time that the Massachusetts Department of Revenue is granting as the result of the widespread power blackout in the Northeastern United States beginning on August 14, 2003. Recognizing that there has been disruption for many individuals and businesses as a result of the power blackout, affected taxpayers with returns or payments due between August 15, 2003 and August 22, 2003 will be granted an extension to file and to pay until August 22, 2003, as further explained below.
II. Extension Provisions: The due date and payment date for returns and payments required to be filed by affected taxpayers between August 15, 2003 and August 22, 2003 will be extended to August 22, 2003. This extension covers the filing of returns as well as claims for abatement, the payment of tax (including payment of estimated tax), making elections and the filing of any other tax documents with the Massachusetts Department of Revenue. During the time of this extension, no interest or penalties will accrue. However, this extension of time does not affect tax deficiencies existing prior to August 15th nor does it apply to filings with the Appellate Tax Board or tax appeals filed with Massachusetts Courts.
III. Affected Taxpayers: "Affected taxpayers," for purposes of this TIR, are any individuals whose principal residence or place of employment, and any business entity whose principal place of business is located within the areas designated by the Internal Revenue Service as ones affected by the power blackout. Affected taxpayers also include individuals and businesses whose tax records, including records needed for tax deposits, are located in the area of the power blackout.
IV. To Claim the Extension: Affected taxpayers seeking an extension to August 22, 2003 should mark the top of any affected returns, payments vouchers, depository slips, or abatement applications (Form CA-6) in red ink with the following notation: "Northeast Blackout" and attach a separate sheet of paper containing a brief explanation of why they are an affected taxpayer within the meaning of this TIR. Individuals or businesses located in the blackout area - or taxpayers outside the area that were directly affected by the power blackout - should contact the Department at 617-887-6367 if they receive penalties for filing returns or paying taxes late.
/s/ Alan LeBovidge_
Commissioner of Revenue
August 19, 2003