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☛ UHC announces “Operation Chip” 1-11-18

Posted by on Jan 11, 2018 in BREAKING NEWS, HEALTH AND WEALTH, HORSE HEALTH, HORSE ORGANIZATIONS, INDUSTRY NEWS, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 0 comments

UHC ANNOUNCES NEW PROGRAM “OPERATION CHIP”

 

PROGRAM WILL BE AN ADDITION TO OPERATION GELDING

Jan. 11, 2018
Press release from Unwanted Horse Coalition

(Washington, DC)- Starting in 2018, the Unwanted Horse Coalition (UHC) will be offering a new service to its popular Operation Gelding program called “Operation Chip.”

“The industry as a whole is moving towards microchipping as the preferred method of identification,” said UHC Director Ashley Furst. “Initially, organizations hosting Operation Gelding clinics will be eligible to apply for microchips for Operation Chip. Eventually we hope to expand the program to be able to offer rescue organizations the opportunity to apply for just the chips to be inserted into the horses in their care. Microchipping horses in rescue organizations is one of the best ways to be able to track them through the system, as well as give the industry the ability to reunite them with their owner in the case of a natural disaster.”

The UHC has partnered with MicrochipID Equine to provide the microchips for the program. The chips provided will come with a chip syringe, as well as a pre-paid registration card, and the veterinarian providing the gelding services at the clinic will be responsible for inserting the chips. “In order to ensure the horses are getting registered, the UHC will also be covering the cost of registration for each chip that is put into a horse,” said Furst. “A survey of rescues that have participated in Operation Gelding showed that only 50% of rescues are scanning horses for chips upon intake. The cost of scanners can be prohibitive for rescues, so as a result the UHC will also be providing eligible 501c3 rescues with an opportunity to apply for a deeply discounted scanner.”

The UHC is able to provide the scanners and chips to participants due to the generosity of The Right Horse Initiative. “The Right Horse Initiative is proud to support the UHC in its efforts to provide a more robust identification system in equine welfare,” said Christy Counts, President of The Right Horse. “Lack of identification is a major barrier to safe transitions for horses in this country. Providing easy access to microchipping for horse owners and horse rescues is a relatively easy and inexpensive solution to achieving our collaborative goal of providing opportunities for at-risk horses.”

Information about Operation Chip and how to apply can be found on the UHC website here: http://www.unwantedhorsecoalition.org/operation-chip/. For any questions, please contact UHC Director Ashley Furst at 202-846-1607 or afurst@horsecouncil.org

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☛ Tax reform to benefit farmers and ranchers 1-4-18

Posted by on Jan 4, 2018 in BREAKING NEWS, COW HORSE NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, HEALTH AND WEALTH, HORSE NEWS, INDUSTRY NEWS, REINING NEWS, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 0 comments

TAX REFORM PACKAGE TO BENEFIT FARMERS AND RANCHERS

Jan. 4, 2018

According to Zippy Duvall, the President of the American Farm Bureau Federation, “The tax reform package passed by Congress this week will result in lower taxes for the vast majority of farmers and ranchers. This tax overhaul includes many changes to the tax code, most notably lower individual tax rates that will benefit farmers and ranchers. Ninety-four percent of farmers and ranchers pay taxes as individuals and those rates are coming down. The bill also maintains all of the important deductions and credits that farmers rely on. So, thanks to a lot of hard work by Congress and the administration, farmers will have both lower rates and all the tools they’ve always had to manage their businesses.

“Starting next year, farmers and ranchers will also be able to take a 20 percent deduction off their business income. That’s new, and it will reduce the taxes farmers owe. The bill also doubles the estate tax exemption to $11 million per person, which will provide relief to the vast majority of farmers and ranchers. We look forward to President Trump signing this bill. Most of the provisions in this tax bill are temporary, lasting for only seven years, so Farm Bureau will now focus our work on making those important tax deductions, lower rates and the estate tax exemption permanent.”

According to Michael Clements of the American Farm Bureau Federation, “Congress is providing farmers and ranchers with a last-minute holiday gift: lower taxes in the future. A tax code overhaul passed by both the House and the Senate this week makes many changes to the tax code that will benefit farmers and ranchers.

New to the tax code, the bill includes a deduction for business income. Also, the estate tax, long opposed by the Farm Bureau, should no longer be a factor for most farmers and ranchers following changes to the estate tax exemption.

American Farm Bureau Federation tax specialist Pat Wolff says the bill includes lower individual tax rates.  “We know that 94 percent of farmers and ranchers pay taxes as individuals and the one tax rates are coming down. The bill also maintains all of the important deductions and credits that farmers rely on. So, farmers have all the tools that they’ve always had to manage their business.

“Starting next year, farmers and ranchers will be able to take a 20 percent deduction of their business income. So if they made $200, they’ll be able to take a $2 deduction. That’s new and will also help reduce the taxes that are owed.

“The bill doubles the estate tax exemption to $11 million per person. At that level, the vast majority of farmers and ranchers won’t have to worry about the estate tax anymore. Most of the provisions are temporary, they only last for seven years. So starting this year, Farm Bureau will be working to make those  important tax deductions the lower rates and the estate tax exemption permanent.”

Also, a recently introduced bill would continue several expired tax provisions important to farmers and ranchers. Offered by the Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-Uah), the Tax Extenders Act of 2017 (S.2256) would extend several tax credits biodiesel, renewable energy and for short line railroads. Most of the credits expired in 2016.

In a recent letter to House and Senate leaders urging them to pass legislation extending these key provisions, the American Farm Bureau Federation and more than 55 other organizations explained that these expired provisions impact sectors vital to the U.S. economy and support tens of thousands of jobs nationwide.

“Acting to extend these expired tax provisions will allow businesses and individuals to make important planning decisions. Allowing these provisions to remain lapsed creates confusion in the marketplace and effectively increases taxes on entities that create jobs and economic growth,” the groups wrote.

House and Senate tax writing committees are expected to work on tax extenders in January.

  • The Tax Extenders Act of 2017 would continue the following Farm Bureau-supported tax provisions, most of which expired in 2016, for 2017 and 2018:
  • The $1.01-per-gallon income tax credit for cellulosic biofuel
    The $1.00-per-gallon biodiesel and renewable diesel tax credits for biodiesel and blending biodiesel
  • The 10-cents-per-gallon Small Agri-Biodiesel Producer Credit
  • The $1.00-per-gallon biodiesel excise tax credit that can be taken against fuel taxes The 30-percent investment tax credit for installing alternative vehicle refueling property
  • The 2.3 cents-per-kilowatt hour Production Tax Credit for energy from closed-loop biomass and the 1.2 cent-per-kilowatt- hour credit for closed-loop biomass
  • The option of taking an investment tax credit in lieu of Production Tax Credit (Currently, it’s 24 percent for 2017, 18 percent for 2018, 12 percent for 2019 and expires in 2020.)
  • The investment tax credit for installation costs of facilities that produce electricity from wind (Currently, it’s 24 percent for 2017, 18 percent for 2018, 12 percent for 2019 and expires in 2020.)
  • The Distributed Wind Investment Tax Credit for electricity production facilities The 50-percent Railroad Track Maintenance Credit for short line railroads
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☛ Avoiding pitfalls of cell-phone fraud 8-27-17

Posted by on Aug 27, 2017 in BREAKING NEWS, COW HORSE NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, HEALTH AND WEALTH, HORSE NEWS, INDUSTRY NEWS, REINING NEWS, RICK'S CORNER, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 0 comments

AVOIDING THE PITFALLS OF CELL-PHONE FRAUD

 

By Rick Dennis
Aug. 27, 2017

INTERNET SALES AND FRAUD
As with any industry, bad actors seem to gravitate to the cell-phone industry, aspiring to make an easy buck off of unsuspecting buyers and sellers on the Internet. Such is the same in the cell-phone market. Recently, I decided to switch carriers and sell my Iphone 7 on the open market, via, Ebay. After registering with this Internet buying-and-selling giant for the first time, I acquired an ID number, listed my sale item and provided the Internet marketer with my PayPal code or PayPal.me/windrivercompanyllc.

 

Once I received my confirmation from Ebay, I started receiving a host of bids on my cell phone. Immediately recognizing a problem, I contacted Ebay customer service and informed them my cell phone wasn’t listed as a bidding item but instead was listed as a fixed-price item. When I went back into my account, I could clearly see my item was listed as a fixed-price item and not a bidding item. I again contacted Ebay and informed them of their computer error. For the record, Ebay assured me this malfunction would be immediately corrected. After a period of time, I decided to explore one of the bidder’s outrageous price offers to see what would happen.

 

My cell phone was listed for a fixed price and the bidder was offering me twice the fixed-price amount. In fact, the bidder’s price was more than the price of a new Iphone 7 of the same type and kind. The curious nature of the affair is that the bidder immediately asked me to “private message” her at a specific telephone number. Once contacted, the bidder requested me to provide her with my PayPal payment email address instead of using my direct link I previously provided to Ebay.

 

Finding this odd, I provided the bidder with my current PayPal email address that would link directly into my PayPal account. For the record, I use my PayPal account for a myriad of selling options to include, but not limited to, book sales, used horse training equipment sales, etc. Therefore, I’m perfectly familiar with the ins and outs of how PayPal operates, including transferring funds directly into my business bank account.

 

After providing this bidder with the payment information, I received an authentic-looking email from what I thought was Ebay/PayPal,, stating the bidder had actually deposited funds into my PayPal account, except the alleged email stated “a hold was on my funds until after receiving shipment confirmation.” The email even contained a link to contact the bidder and provide the tracking number of my Iphone.

 

As a professional Risk Analyst and Risk Manager, there are several factors in this saga which brought my suspicion to the point that this was a fraudulent sale, such as:

 

1)         The bidders offering price for the cell phone was more than I paid for it and more than the bidder could purchase a new one for.

 

2)         In all of the sales I performed through PayPal, I’ve never had any of my funds restricted.

 

3)         The “bidder/payee’s name” and “ship to/recipient’s name” were different, as well as being located in two different states.

 

4)         The payee’s shipping instructions were immediate or the same morning of the email contact.

 

To verify my suspicions, I contacted PayPal Corporate Security and informed them of the facts of the impending sale along with furnishing them a copy of the email, which contained the exact authentic information and logos PayPal uses. After a period of time, PayPal contacted me and informed me the email was bogus or a fraud and it had been generated from a fraudulent web site. PayPal thanked me for providing them with this information. Afterwards, I contacted Ebay and informed them of my findings; however, the customer service representative wasn’t as respectful or cooperative.

 Click for Pay Pal document>>

 

Essentially, after checking my Ebay page, she informed me that I would be responsible for the listed-price payout percentage as well as the percentage associated with the final value price of the item sold. In fact, the fraudulent bidder had marked my item “sold,” when in reality the item wasn’t sold. Afterwards, an exchange of philosophy transpired between Ebay and myself. For the record, I informed Ebay of the built-in flaws of their system in protecting unsuspecting sellers of this lurking fraud.

 

I also explained to Ebay that “in my opinion,” Ebay was subject to culpable liability in this matter simply due to the manner in which their system was set up, allowing buyer and seller to have mutual contact through the Ebay site; thereby, enabling an individual to perpetuate a fraud. Also, “in my opinion,” Ebay should have a system setup whereby the entire sale – from initiation and conclusion – should be controlled by Ebay. The irony of this entire situation is:

 

1)         I received an email from Ebay informing me my sale item was sold when in fact it wasn’t, including the price paid being beyond my asking price.

 

2)         After the fact, another email from Ebay informed me not to do business with a certain individual and my account may have been compromised.

 

3)         Still another email from Ebay, informed me the proposed buyer is suspect, hasn’t registered with Ebay and will no longer be allowed to buy items on Ebay. Imagine that.

 

To top it off, I received a computer-generated bill from Ebay detailing my costs for the sale of my Iphone – which never transpired. All in all, I never suspected I would be performing a Risk Analysis on Internet selling as well as the inherent risks involved in selling items on the Internet. Lesson learned: Again, “in my opinion,” the Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation should open investigations on “Crimes Against Persons,” involving the massive fraud obviously inherent in Internet selling.

 

In conclusion, an Internet-selling company found with inadequate security should be prosecuted and fined. One can only imagine the amount of property and funds that are stolen each year by individuals making a living trolling Internet selling sites, looking for quick deals from unsuspecting sellers. I would bet the amount of stolen property would mount in the millions of dollars. The fact is, it’s very easy for an individual operating in another country, or perhaps living in a tent in the desert, to initiate a scam operation.

 

Therefore, educate yourself before you engage in Internet selling. One noted fact is: “The safety and security of Internet selling begins with companies such as Ebay and Amazon, period.”

Click for Ebay response1>>

Click for Ebay scan 2>>

Click for Ebay scan 3>>

INTERNET SELLING PRECAUTIONS
If your intent is to sell items on the Internet, familiarize yourself with the rules and regulations of the Internet-selling provider. If an individual tries to isolate you off of the Internet selling site – don’t do it. And don’t provide any information to an individual who is not listed on the seller’s site. Check with seller. If an individual posing as a buyer attempts to isolate you and requests personal or other information, immediately contact the seller site’s customer service department.

 

In this matter, it ended on a somewhat happy note: I still have my Iphone; however, I did lose a sale due to an attempted fraudulent transaction. On a good note, I acquired enough information to hopefully enlighten and educate the reading audience of www.allaboutcutting.com, with information that will prevent an individual from being a victim and losing their property.

 

“Until Next Time, Keep ‘Em Between The Bridle!”

 

WIND RIVER COMPANY LLC

Richard E. “Rick” Dennis

Managing Member

Office/Mopbile: (985) 630-3500

Email: windrivercompany@gmail.com

Web Site: http://www.windrivercompanyllc.com

 

 

 

 

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☛ A cheaper way to talk 8-18-17

Posted by on Aug 18, 2017 in BREAKING NEWS, COW HORSE NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, HEALTH AND WEALTH, HORSE NEWS, INDUSTRY NEWS, REINING NEWS, RICK'S CORNER, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 5 comments

A CHEAPER WAY TO TALK!

 

ALL CELL PHONES ARE NOT THE SAME

By Richard E. “Rick” Dennis
August 18, 2017

As a businessman, the most important tools of my primary trade are: 1) my vehicle, 2) my computer and 3) my cell phone. The same goes for horse owners and trainers. Over time cell phone communication has evolved from objects that looked like bricks to the phones we use today, which are easily placed in our shirt pockets.

However, along with evolution also evolved the costs of these mobile devices as well as the cost for their service capability with a cell carrier’s ever-increasing costs. Cell phone bills have graduated over time to eliminate cost-per-minute values, roaming charges, including connection fees and opting instead for monthly charges comprised of packages or bundled costs.

Today, cell phones basically are either Android or Apple I-phones. These phones come in different sizes – from small to large – and have enough functions and storage to be considered a handheld computer that can talk. As the old adage goes, “There’s an app for that.”

Then there are the basic models that only allow texting and talking. However, the most advanced models can be used to type and send an email or a complete letter using the correct word processor app.

Whether your using the voice control to find directions to a local eating place or directions for an over-the-country trip, the modern cell phone will do it all.  However, along with modern advances also comes advances in pricing.  The cell phone industry has evolved into a comfortable multi-billion dollar industry.  Today, cell phones are used to talk on, take photographs and video, wake up to, remind us when to go to sleep, keep track of important meetings, conduct business with clients, count our steps, stay in touch with our families, contact emergency facilities in case we need them as well as ordering and purchasing items over the internet.

In fact, “do-it-all” cell phones have virtually replaced our land-line phones, our cameras, our video recorders and in some cases our computers. Technological engineering advances have produced cell phones with state-of-the-art video recording devices and photographic documentation that rivals the best-known cameras. Essentially, cell phones have become indispensable in our daily lives.

THE TECHNOLOGY:

Today, there are four main cell phone carriers operating in the United States: Verizon Wireless, AT&T Communications, Sprint and T-Mobile. The first three companies are American owned with T-Mobile being owned by Deutsche Telekom.

However, the leading cell phone systems in use today are: Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA), a channel-access method used by various radio communications technologies.  CDMA is an example of multiple access, where several transmitters can send information simultaneously over a single communication channel. This allows several users to share a band of frequencies (bandwidth). To permit this without undue interference between the users, CDMA employs spread-spectrum technology and a special coding scheme, where each transmitter is assigned a code.  CDMA is used as the access method in many mobile phone standards.  IS95 also called “CDMAONE”, and its 3G evolution CDMA2000 are often referred to as CDMA, which is also used to control the speed of data transmission. Verizon Wireless and Sprint use the CDMA cell-phone technology.

Global System for Mobile Communication (GSM) is the second technology in use today by cell phone carriers in the United States.  GSM is a digital mobile telephony system that is widely used in Europe and other parts of the world. GSM uses a variation of time division multiple access (TDMA) and is the most widely used of the three digital wireless telephony technologies (TDMA), (GSM), and (CDMA). AT&T and T-Mobile utilize this technology.

In my research I determined that unless you purchase an unlocked version of your favorite phone it will not work on a dual basis, e.g., each specific carrier has the cell phone manufacturer engineers design a phone that works on either the (CDMA) of (GSM) system.

However, unlocked cell phones are generally designed to work on either system which negates having to purchase a new cell phone when you change a carrier for better pricing or reception requirements. A cell phone that I’ve used and is designed to work on either cellular concept, from inception, is Motorola. In fact the cell phone provider advertises their unlocked phones will work on AT&T, Verizon, Sprint and T-Mobile. I Interviewed representatives from AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile and determined there were two specific reasons major carries sold cell phones locked and specific to their carrier brand.

1) It provides the carrier with a market base that’s hard to get rid of unless the owner of the cell phone decides to take an enormous loss in trading in or selling their existing cell phone, which guarantees the carrier recurring revenue and 2) the carrier maintains control of the cell phone and its owner if the phone is financed by the carrier for a specific amount of time. Essentially, you’re being punished for moving your service. The main drawback to some cell phone users is: Unlocked cell phones require a cash purchase versus purchasing a cell phone from a major carrier using the locked-and financed-basis, which is essentially signing a contract with the carrier until the phone is paid off.

Recently, I ran into an issue with my cell carrier whom I’ve been with since cell phones were invented and marketed.  After a long debate, I decided to shop my existing phone on the open carrier market. To my surprise, my phone would only work on AT&T and perhaps T-Mobile and Straight Talk Wireless which is sold at Walmart.  I also learned my existing cell phone I purchased on December 4, 2016 for $769 from AT&T was only worth $375 in August 2017.

After counseling with several cell phone retailers and wholesalers, I learned the cell phone is one of the fastest depreciating electronic devices you can purchase.  My (I-Phone 7) 128 GB (gigabyte) phone actually depreciated $53 per month to date. Therefore, in order to leave my carrier I would take a huge loss on my cell phone and perhaps the coverages at T-Mobile and Straight Talk which is exclusive to Walmart and utilizes the TracFone System that wouldn’t provide me with adequate coverage since I’m a national and international traveler.

ON THE HUNT FOR A CHEAPER ALTERNATIVE

So off to Walmart I went in search of a cheaper alternative.  Upon arrival I was enlightened by the vast array of cell phones carried by this marketing giant.

In the electronics department was a vast assortment of cell phones, represented by a myriad of cell phone carriers.  One item in particular brought my attention.  Walmart has joined forces with Verizon in their pre-paid division. A pre-paid phone is one whereby the monthly bill is paid in advance using either a pre-paid card or a direct withdrawal from your bank account.

I needed some phones and services to experiment with so I purchased an I-Phone 5S 16 GB on the Walmart-Verizon Network and an LG Model on the Straight Talk Network. The curious nature of this affair is that I learned the Walmart Straight Talk System buys air time from all of the major carriers and sells it to the consumer at a reduced cost, along with matching phones.

A number of newer unlocked phones, such as the Moto G (4th Gen) are universal and; therefore, compatible with all major U.S. carriers in addition to most overseas carriers. You can choose almost any carrier or plan and all you need is a SIM card. Common U.S. carriers include: Verizon, Sprint, AT&T, T-Mobile, Cricket Wireless, AT&T Go-Phone and TracFone

THE EXPERIMENT BEGINS

After arriving home, I began the process of installing each phone’s SIM (Subscriber Identity Module)  card and charging the phone. Once the phone was completely charged I followed the activation directions and acquired my telephone numbers. The I-Phone 5S cost me $49.95 and the LG Model cost $79.00.  Afterwards, I carried both cell phones in addition to my $769 I-Phone on the AT&T Network.

For the record, the I-Phone 5S was on the Verizon-Walmart circuit or the (CDMA) system and the LG was on the AT&T-Walmart System or the (GSM).  For three weeks now I’ve been carrying the phones to compare how well they functioned against each other. The following is the outcome of the cell phone trials.

1) The Verizon Walmart I-Phone 5S functioned flawlessly.  If my AT&T I-Phone 7 had one bar of coverage, my I-Phone 5S had three (3) to four (4) bars. The camera is excellent in this little phone. The video worked excellent. Reception was outstanding with no dead zones and data speeds were lighting fast.  If I kept this phone it would cost me $40 per month for a 3 + 1 GB of data, exclusively at Walmart.  In some cases this phone had service when the AT&T I-Phone didn’t.  All of the individuals I spoke with on this phone said the sound was excellent.

2) The Walmart LG Straight Talk phone functioned flawlessly.  It’s comparable to the AT&T I-Phone 7, except when the former didn’t have coverage the LG did.  This little phone’s camera and video functioned flawlessly and there were no dead zones during testing.  If I kept this phone my cell bill would be $45 per month for unlimited talk, text and data.

FINAL ANALYSIS

In the end, if you’re not looking for the latest cell phone, there are cheaper alternatives out there besides the ones mentioned in this article. If you’re like me and you use your cell phone for your business, one of these models may suit you perfectly. That way, if you break it or lose it, you won’t be out a month’s mortgage payment on your house.

Along with this analysis, I also performed an analysis of my insurance for my phone through AT&T.  I was very unhappy to discover the replacement cost would be a $225 out-of-pocket deductible expense.  For that amount I can buy 5 I-Phone 5S’s from Walmart.  As with all I-Phones, this little model comes with fully functioning I-Cloud storage.  The same picture storage is available for either phone free of charge from Google Photos.

In my final analysis, I learned that cell coverage is predicated on cell-tower availability. I also learned the main cause of malfunctions with cell carriers is horrible customer service.

So if you’re in the horse business and you constantly are in need of a replaced, broken or wore-out phone, there are cheaper alternatives out there that function fine.

Since then I have returned to Walmart and purchased their Verizon-Walmart I-Phone 32 GB SE to use as a spare phone until I can sell my AT&T I-Phone 7.  Porting your existing cell number is easy – except if your phone is locked due to owing the carrier money.

“Until Next Time, Keep Em Between The Bridle”

WIND RIVER COMPANY LLC

Richard E. “Rick” Dennis

Managing Member

 

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☛ Nutrition Conference Announced 2-8-17

Posted by on Feb 8, 2017 in EQUI-VOICE, HEALTH AND WEALTH, HORSE HEALTH, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 0 comments

ANNUAL MID-ATLANTIC NUTRITION CONFERENCE ANNOUNCED

Press release
Feb. 8, 2017

The 2017 Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference, the region’s premier animal nutrition conference, will be held April 5-6, 2017 at the Hunt Valley Wyndam Grand in Hunt Valley, MD. Two days of expert speakers have been lined up with the Equine Session held on the second day featuring morning seminars devoted to the aged horse, allergies, and how to boost the equine immune system. The afternoon will be devoted to the equine gut microbiome and related supplements. Veterinarians, students, horse trainers, horse breeders, and horse owners should not miss this opportunity to learn about exciting new discoveries related to their equine health and nutrition. All attendees will receive lunch and the opportunity to ask questions of all of the experts. Pre- registrations are encouraged and can be done online at: https://ansc.umd.edu/extension/mid- atlantic-nutrition-conference/registration-information

2017 Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference – Equine Session Schedule Thursday, April 6, 2017

8:00am Physiology of Aging in Horses
Dr. Karyn Malinowski, Rutgers University

8:50am Feeding Management of the Endocrine Challenged Horse Dr. Lisa Tadros, Michigan State University

10:20am Exploring Seasonal Allergies in Horses
Dr. Katherine Williamson, Purina Animal Nutrition

11:10am Can Nutrition Be Used to Boost the Immune System? Dr. Lori Warren, University of Florida

1:30pm Gut Microbiome Overview
Dr. Amy Biddle, University of Delaware

Sorting Out Common Ingredients In Equine Supplements

Dr. Melyni Worth, Foxden Equine

2:20pm Probiotics and Prebiotics in Horse Feed: What’s the Difference? Dr. Marty Adams, Southern States

Panel Discussion: Digestive Feed Supplements and the Gut Microbiome

The conference is hosted by the Maryland Feed Industry Council, University of Maryland, Pennsylvania State University, University of Delaware, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Rutgers University, American Feed Industry Association, and the United States Department of Agriculture.

For more information on the entire conference, please visit our website at https://ansc.umd.edu/extension/mid-atlantic-nutrition-conference.

For information on sponsoring this event, please contact Jennifer Reynolds at 301-405-1547.

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☛ Is Tax Court biased in favor of IRS? 2-6-17

Posted by on Feb 6, 2017 in BREAKING NEWS, COW HORSE NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, HEALTH AND WEALTH, HORSE NEWS, INDUSTRY NEWS, REINING NEWS, RODEO & BULLRIDING NEWS, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 0 comments

IS THE TAX COURT BIASED IN FAVOR OF THE IRS?

 

By John Alan Cohan, Attorney at Law
Feb. 6, 2017

The U.S. Tax Court is a critically important institution.  It is the the most common forum in which taxpayers litigate federal tax disputes.  The court frequently decides IRS assertions that the taxpayer understated the correct tax liability, resulting in a tax “deficiency.”

Many commentators argue that Tax Court judges are biased in favor of the IRS.  Judges hear cases alone, without a jury.  Many Tax Court judges have worked in the IRS Chief Counsel’s office or in the Tax Division of the U.S. Department of Justice.  The Tax Court does not assign judges randomly to cases.  The procedures are extremely burdensome.  The burden of proof is “preponderance of the evidence,” which is a loose standard of evidence, and highly subjective.  It means the the IRS could win if 51% of its evidence is more convincing to the judge than the taxpayer’s.

The Tax Court makes budget requests to Congress’s tax-writing committees.  In justifying its budget requests, the Tax Court invariably explains to congressional committees how well it is enforcing the tax laws.

A Tax Court judge, Diane L. Kroupa, was indicted on tax evasion, conspiracy to defraud the United States, and obstruction charges, raising questions about whether any of her rulings could be vulnerable to challenge as a result.  (Judge Kroupa abruptly resigned prior to the indictment without explanation.  Her husband, now divorced, was also indicted.)  As a Tax Court judge, Kroupa heard and decided a wide range of cases, including some that came down against taxpayers in the horse and cattle industries.  In October, 2016, she pleaded guilty to conspiring to defraud the IRS and other crimes.  When sentenced at a later date, she is likely to serve a significant prison term.

Another judge, L. Paige Marvel, has also been harsh with respect to the horse industry.  In a recent case, Carmody v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo 2016-225, Judge Marvel came down hard on a taxpayer’s efforts to run his horse racing venture profitably.

The taxpayer, Jerald Carmody, has owned race horses for more than 20 years, mainly as co-owner with others, and worked full-time as a sales representative for a helicopter company.

He owned lower priced horses which were actively raced in Washington State.  Professional trainers were employed.  He spent time every day on his horse racing activity, researched horses that would be in competition, and searched for other horses to purchase.

He purchased and improved a five-acre property with a 4,000 square-foot barn, horse stalls, a 5,000-square-foot arena, indoor horse shelters, and nine pastures.  He personally cleaned stalls and pastures.

Some of the horses won several races each, and one was the alltime race winner at Emerald Downs with 21 wins.  Mr. Carmody was named owner of the year at Emerald Downs.  The races entered ranged in purses from $8,000 to $50,000.

During a 10-year period, the taxpayer’s losses were from $16,064 to $81,345, with no profit year.  But there was income in each year, ranging from $17,917 to $128,068.

When horses were retired from racing, they were sold or given away.  Of 36 horses sold, there was a net gain on only eight of those sales.

Mr. Carmody had a horse racing bank account, but paid for expenses out of his personal account as well as the racing account.

Mr. Carmody kept a folder for each horse with various receipts and documents related to that horse.

Judge Marvel said that Mr. Carmody did not use any of his records to reduce losses or to achieve profitability.  The court noted that Mr. Carmody had no written business plan, no budgets and no economic forecasts.  “In fact, the record is devoid of any credible evidence that petitioner engaged in any meaningful financial management with respect to his horse racing activity.”

The court said, “While a taxpayer need not maintain a sophisticated cost accounting system, the taxpayer should keep records that enable the taxpayer to cut expenses, generate or increase profits, or evaluate the overall performance of the operation.”

The court also faulted Mr. Carmody for commingling his personal and horse racing finances.  “This commingling of personal and horse racing activity funds is not indicative of a businesslike practice.”

The court also noted that Mr. Carmody realized no profits in a 20-year period, and that “he contends that he suffered losses because he reinvested his gross receipts back into the horse racing activity and that he used his gross receipts to improve his barns, arena, and other horse racing activity property.  Petitioner’s contentions are woefully insufficient to justify or even explain an unbroken string of over 20 years of substantial losses.”

The court concluded that the petitioner did not engage in his horse racing activity with the predominant, primary, or principal objective of making a profit.

The only silver lining in this case is that the judge rejected the IRS’ accuracy-related penalties because the taxpayer had reasonably relied on his accountant’s advice in taking the deductions.

One of the important lessons in this case is that taxpayers need to somehow review records so as to reduce expenses or enhance the possibility of generating income.  It is important to keep track of expenses on a per-animal basis.  And it is important to prepare financial statements, profit and loss projections, budgets, breakeven analyses, or marketing surveys, as the IRS considers these to be significant financial tools to aid in evaluating the overall performance of an operation.

[John Alan Cohan is an attorney representing people in federal and state tax disputes, IRS appeals, and Tax Court litigation, and is a long-standing author of a legal advice column published in numerous sporting magazines.  In addition, he advises organizations on compliance with newly enacted laws and regulations.  John is also author of the book, Turn Your Hobby Into A Business — The Right Way.  He can be reached at:  (310) 278-0203, or email at johnalancohan@aol.com.  His website is JohnAlanCohan.com.]

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