Good News for May!

by Deborah Hollingworth

tax forms

Seems like there is a scarcity of “good news” these days as we learn to deal with this Covid-19 pandemic, developing new habits of social distancing, scrupulous hand washing, and disinfecting surfaces. Hopefully it’s not too early to say we might be seeing some “flattening of the curve” because of our new habits?

Meanwhile neighbors check on neighbors, families and friends keep in touch with social media, new groups of volunteers spring up and our leaders are thinking of ways to work collectively. Who could have imagined Governor Baker putting together a deal with China for over a million face masks and having the New England Patriots jet go pick them up and deliver to Massachusetts hospitals, and our National Guard escorting some of these masks to New York hospitals? It sounds like a movie script, but difficult times call for creative solutions.

More good news:

We have until July to file both our State and Federal income taxes. The Food Stamp program has not been reduced as expected and pop-up Food Pantries are happening in our communities.

Along the same lines, Governor Baker has “frozen” MassHealth benefits. This means those MassHealth consumers who have to file their re-application paperwork won’t lose benefits. Those individuals in the process of filing new applications for MassHealth benefits have more time to get their applications completed. Your time won’t run out if you miss a deadline. This decision keeps MassHealth benefits in place and suspends deadlines for getting paperwork completed.

Here’s hoping next month will see more progress defeating this pandemic. Until then, stay well, and help a friend or neighbor when you can.