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December Newsletter – Sexual Harassment Policy Tips

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Can you believe it? 2017 is just about over. It’s been a hectic year in Corporate America, especially concerning sexual harassment in the workforce. Included in our newsletter are 2 articles with tips to keep your sexual harassment policy up to date in light of the latest events in the news.

Fun Fact

78.2 million workers in the U.S. are hourly employees. This represents nearly 60 percent of all wage and salary workers.  Remember that Arizona minimum wage increases to $10.50 an hour on January 1st

Market Update

Sexual harassment is making the news a lot these days, but most of the complaints that HR hears about day-to-day aren’t quite as clear-cut—or egregious—as the reports against former Fox CEO Roger Ailes, Kevin Spacey and Charlie Rose.

The classic example of harassment, which is what Ailes allegedly engaged in, involves a supervisor tying an employee’s advancement opportunities to requests for sex. While such “quid pro quo” cases make the most headlines, they are far less common than so-called “hostile environment” harassment, wherein an employee is made to feel uncomfortable by the discriminatory behavior of another co-worker, client or customer.

Click to read the full article. 

Payroll Update

The Internal Revenue Service today announced cost of living adjustments affecting dollar limitations for pension plans and other retirement-related items for tax year 2018.  The IRS today issued technical guidance detailing these items in Notice 2017-64.

Highlights of Changes for 2018

The contribution limit for employees who participate in 401(k), 403(b), most 457 plans, and the federal government’s Thrift Savings Plan is increased from $18,000 to $18,500.

The income ranges for determining eligibility to make deductible contributions to traditional Individual Retirement Arrangements (IRAs), to contribute to Roth IRAs and to claim the saver’s credit all increased for 2018.

***Remember that Arizona minimum wage increases to $10.50 an hour on January 1st

Click to read the full article. 

HR Update

It was a little more than one day after sexual harassment allegations surfaced against Todayshow host Matt Lauer that NBC announced that it had fired the leading anchor.

And it was mere hours after sexual harassment allegations came to light against Rep. John Conyers Jr., D-Michigan, that House leaders were calling for his resignation, even before the House Ethics Committee could look into the charges.

As reports of sexual harassment ensnare some of the nation’s most high-profile men—in Hollywood, in Congress and at big-name companies—corporate executives and leading political figures seem in a hurry to conduct damage control by denouncing or firing the alleged wrongdoers.

Click to read the full article.

Accounting Update

With the end of the year looming, the window is quickly closing for taxpayers who want to minimize the taxes they will pay next spring.

What’s more, for those trying to make year-end adjustments to their income and deductions, a tax reform bill being discussed in the District of Columbia has created uncertainty. Although it’s tempting to take action based on expected changes to the law, some finance experts urge caution. “Until the law becomes formal, we have to be very careful,” says Kristin Bulat, senior vice president of strategic resources for insurance and consulting firm NFP.

Taxpayers shouldn’t make rash decisions based on a bill which may or may not become law. However, there are some smart money moves that can help hedge against potential changes.

Here are 10 tax tips to reduce the amount of federal income tax you’ll pay for 2017.

Click to read the full article.

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