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New year, new state laws + IRS creeping in ya DMs

At the time of writing this, we are 16 days and counting into a government shutdown and I hope that y
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New year, new state laws + IRS creeping in ya DMs
By Hipsternomics  • Issue #51 • View online
At the time of writing this, we are 16 days and counting into a government shutdown and I hope that your income has not been much affected. With the first news brief of the year, let’s dive into some of the things that happened within the first 8 days of 2019.

When the gov't says the shutdown won't affect your tax returns 😏
When the gov't says the shutdown won't affect your tax returns 😏
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While you were ringing in the new year a champagne bottle, various new state laws went into effect as soon as the ball dropped. California led the pack with more than 1,000 new laws from everything including requiring employers to make private space available for breastfeeding at work, restaurants to be fined for giving you straws for your drink without you asking for one, to banning NDAs in sexual harassment, assault, and discrimination cases. Other law enforcement and criminal reforms also took effect, such as requiring police transparency and public access to police records, and prohibiting juvenile criminal defendants from being prosecuted as adults. California also added misdemeanor domestic violence or battery “including harmful touching of a spouse, roommate or dating partner - to the crimes that permanently disqualifies a person from ever owning a gun.”
New money, who dis? 21 cities and 19 states have now raised the minimum wage to $15, including New York City and Seattle, and about 10 California cities. New York City now bans restaurants and stores from using foam takeout containers and cups. New Yorkers will now get up to 10 weeks of paid leave to care for a new child, care for a sick family member or to help loved ones when a family member is deployed abroad for military service. Florida will restore the voting rights of all former felons except those convicted of murder or a felony sexual offense, which would allow about 1.4 million more possible voters in Florida. Few states (Oregon, Vermont, Washington, Colorado, Hawaii, and California) now allows terminally ill and suffering patients to end their lives with the help of a doctor, legalizing physician-assisted suicide.
Chart of the week
Who really makes money from girls scout cookie sales?
Who really makes money from girls scout cookie sales?
Interesting Quick Hits
IRS Lurking Through Your Social Media - The IRS will begin creeping on your Facebook and Instagram posts in an attempt to catch people who cheat on their business and personal tax. The IRS claims that “businesses and individuals increasingly use social media to advertise, promote, and sell products and services” Therefore, the agency is looking for a tool that will “provide real-time, customizable reports of publicly available social media information such as new products, current sales, and new locations.“ So if you are running a business on Instagram/Facebook, you may have some new undercover "friends”. 
Microsoft Gets Into the Grocery Business - America’s biggest supermarket chain, Kroger, is testing out a new “digital shelves” in partnership with Microsoft, that can show ads to shoppers and even change prices on the fly, with hopes to eventually roll out this system in all of its 2,780 stores. Microsoft’s AI software which can predict a shopper’s age and gender could use that data to tailor ads and/or products to shoppers preferences. For now, this new digital shelf experience is available in 92 Kroger stores in Cincinnati and Washington.
Want Free College Tuition? First, Get a New Job - Several companies are now offering a free college education to employees as perks to retain workers. These programs range from two-year associates to MBA degrees, for employers ranging from line cooks and theme-park workers to mid-career managers. Discover offers full tuition for its employees to attend the University of Florida, Brandman University and Wilmington University and for online degrees in business, cybersecurity, computer engineering or organizational management. Walmart, pays 100% of tuition costs directly to the school, with minimal or no expense for workers. Taco Bell covers up to $5,000 a year in costs upfront for all its employees. While Disney plans to spend $50 million on its employees’ educations by mid-2019 and $25 million a year after that.
Companies mentioned in this issue (52-week): Facebook​ (-26%), Twitter (+29%), Disney (-1%), Yum Brands (+10%), Walmart (-6%), Discover (-22%). 
Resources of the Week
3400 free online courses are starting this month - Okay maybe your employer doesn’t offer tuition-free education, or you want to get out of that government job to avoid future furloughs. Here are 3,400 free university courses you can take online to learn something new or launch a new career. 
Free co-working space for freelancers in NYC - The Freelancers Union opened up the Freelancers Hub in Brooklyn, a communal co-working space that also offers classes, tax, and legal advice all for free to freelancers in NY. 
Podcast: How Soulcycle was built. An interview with the women who founded the company back in 2006. There are some really good lessons to learn about grit, creativity and getting this whole “partnership” thing right when starting a business with other people.
Airfordable - Got #TravelGoals for the new year? Airfordable can help you book those flights for just a deposit upfront and then you pay the remainder in installments over a period of time before your departure date. 
Want to share a great resource? Just hit me @vtineike
Thank you for reading through the first news brief of 2019! This was written at Hungry Ghost coffee shop in Brooklyn while listening to “Victory Lap” a Grammy-nominated album by Nipsey Hussle, and “Home and Away” an Afrobeats album by Shirazee. 
You should expect to receive this newsletter every Tuesday and Friday mornings. If you enjoyed any of these articles, please share or forward it to a friend. Have a great week!
Valentine (@vtineike)
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