Paul's Note - April 3rd, 2020

Supervisor Richard Elías passed away last Saturday. He wasn’t just another politician, but a true friend to all of us that love this community. We have had our differences, but I never for a second doubted his commitment to this city’s culture, environment and most of all its people.

His commitment to our city was in his blood. His family were among the first Spanish settlers in this area, and his great-grand parents founded and ran El Tucsonense, Tucson’s Spanish language newspaper and an important center for Hispanic culture in Tucson for a big part of the last century. His father ran Old Pueblo Printers, a union print shop downtown. His father and mother’s sense of neighborliness and justice was passed down to Richard.

He didn’t come out of the usual places our politicians do. Before he became a supervisor, he ran housing programs in both local government and in the non-profit sector. It led to a different approach to how to tackle issues before him as a policy maker.

I learned a lot from him, and I am lucky to have served while he was in office.

Our whole community was lucky.

My prayers go out to his wife Emily, his sister Ana, his brother Albert and his daughter Luz. Thank you for sharing Richard with the rest of us.

Resist. Much love.

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Because the Ward 2 office has been closed, there hasn’t been the opportunity for you to drop off donated items with us.

However, Quilter’s Market, located across the street from my office at 7601 E Speedway, is taking donations of masks. They also have material if you’d like to make masks to donate.

I am not encouraging any of you to make special trips, but if you do have an essential trip to make, please remember that they are there.

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Many employees of small businesses are suffering right now. The Paycheck Protection Program is specifically designed to help small businesses keep their workforce employed and paid. Visit SBA.gov/Coronavirus for more information on the Paycheck Protection Program.

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The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has confirmed that even people who typically do not file a tax return will need to file to receive an economic impact payment. Low-income taxpayers, senior citizens, Social Security recipients, some veterans and individuals with disabilities who are otherwise not required to file a tax return will not owe tax but must still file a return with the IRS. The IRS is developing a simplified form that should become available very soon.

Here is an excerpt from the IRS website:

If you filed a 2018 or 2019 tax return you will automatically receive a stimulus check.

However, if you did not file a tax return you can still get a check. To do so you will need to complete a simplified tax return which will be available shortly.

Information can be found at www.IRS.Gov/CoronaVirus

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I’d just like to remind you that my office is closed until further notice. My staff is still answering calls and emails. Please stay in touch at 791-4687 or ward2@tucsonaz.gov. You can also call 791-2540 for questions about city services. Remember that this is not for health questions.

Remember that the best thing that most of us can do is to stay home and take care of our families. This will pass and we can get through this together.