How to Develop a Sanitation Plan for Employee and Customer Safety

As part of a comprehensive strategy to cope with COVID-19 and reduce the risk of spreading it, developing a sanitation plan is a necessary tool that businesses can implement during the reopening process.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends a thorough approach for cleaning and disinfecting. The first thing to do to reduce the amount of COVID-19 virus on exterior surfaces and items handled by individuals is to wash them with soap and water.

When it comes to items handled by many individuals, using appropriate disinfectants approved by the Environmental Protect Agency that contains active ingredients such as ethanol, hydrogen peroxide, sodium hypochlorite, and sodium chlorite is another way to lower the chances of people being exposed to the virus.

The CDC lists a few examples of items that exist in offices and/or retail outlets that need to be disinfected – not just cleaned. Examples include touch screens, phones, handles, light switches, tables, doorknobs, toilets, shopping carts, and anything that’s likely to be touched by multiple people throughout the day. Keeping doors open can reduce the need for employees or customers to constantly touch the door.

When it comes to soft or spongy items, such as rugs or seating, the CDC recommends to first remove any unnecessary items. For things that must remain such as carpeting, they should be washed according to the manufacturer’s recommendations, using hot water and letting them dry fully.

Another way to increase workplace and retail hygiene is to improve air quality. Other recommendations include running air filtration and exchanges 24/7. It also includes maintaining fresh filters and ensuring they’re installed properly and increasing the level of air filtration to maintain clean and healthy airflow.

Encouraging employees to wash their hands for a minimum of 20 seconds or using a hand sanitizer with a minimum of 60 percent alcohol is also recommended. Reminding employees verbally or through written means (including signage posted throughout the building) to wash their hands throughout the day, including before and after work, when they use the restroom, and after touching their workspace or work materials is also recommended.   

While every office and retail space is different, taking steps to reduce the chance of COVID-19 infection is a great way to stay safe and create goodwill with employees and customers.

Sources

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/guidance-business-response.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/pdf/Reopening_America_Guidance.pdf

https://www.epa.gov/pesticide-registration/list-n-disinfectants-use-against-sars-cov-2-covid-19

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/clean-disinfect/index.html

IRS Gears Up for Aggressive Enforcement

Recently, the IRS Commissioner testified before the Senate Finance Committee, sending the message that the IRS is committed to catching intentional tax evaders. There was no ambiguity in the message of his testimony to Congress; he noted that under his watch, the IRS will aggressively pursue those purposely evading their tax obligations with civil and criminal enforcements. The commissioner made sure to mention that those who were not defrauding the system intentionally had nothing to worry about; they are not the target of stepped-up enforcement.

The IRS will be targeting five major enforcement initiatives:

  1. Technology – The IRS will put a new focus on their use of technology as an enforcement tool; specifically, advanced data and analytical strategies. With this data-driven approach, the IRS believes it will be able to catch tax fraud impossible to spot even just a few years ago.
  2. Offshore Tax Evasion – Offshore tax reporting enforcement is a long-standing priority of the IRS, but the current commissioner reiterated focus on this area, so don’t expect to see any easing here.
  3. Tax Shelters – The IRS believes many taxpayers are abusing two tax shelters, syndicated conservation easements and micro-captive insurance arrangements. They plan on stepped-up enforcement on both those who arrange these shelters and taxpayers who participate in them.
  4. Cryptocurrency – The IRS believes there is mass non-compliance in the world of cryptocurrencies through either underreporting or nonreporting of taxable transactions.
  5. Wealthy Taxpayers – Enforcement actions take time and are resource intensive, so it should be no surprise that the IRS is going after noncompliant taxpayers with the biggest ROI. The IRS is considering anyone with an income level over $100,000 to be high-income. 

Expect to see increased tax enforcement efforts ahead, with a focus on those who are intentionally evading the system. If you haven’t purposely defrauded the system, you have little to worry about.