URGENT: Sign MAAPL’s Petition to Reverse the Alton King Decision!

Over 1,600 people have signed MAAPL’s petition to  reverse the SJC’s Bank of NY Mellon, as Trustee vs. Alton King decision—we need thousands to stand up against this injustice! Please share this widely and sign today!

A truly reprehensible decision and travesty has been delivered by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC); since this predatory lending surfaced in 2008, the SJC has focused its job as simply upholding our laws; with decisions, of course, that have overwhelmingly meant protecting homeowners.

However, its June 17, 2020 decision against Alton King, reversed (we hope temporarily) that role. We must reverse this historic first: stripping constitutional rights of a portion of Massachusetts residents!

“Demand the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Take Its Knee Off Our Necks! Rescind its decision denying court access to Alton King and all homeowners who were illegally foreclosed and made indigent.”

We urgently need your signature on this petition right here and for you to spread it as widely and broadly as possible. We literally need thousands of signatures to truly expose to the SJC that it must, Must, MUST change this decision.

Now is our time!

  • We must act to use this moratorium and the current level of legislative awareness to shift the battlefield on which the banks have been acting.
  • Systemically, we can also take this bad decision from the SJC and make it the Industry’s last hurrah for using those in our government as its patsies — in this onslaught against people of color, women heads of household and of course, the collateral inclusion of working class white folks in this criminal ravaging of our society.  Together we can turn the tide on all of this.

P.S.  MAAPL is still seeking people with administrative and/or computer processing, word processing, online researching skills to compile the tens of thousands of pieces of evidence, especially for the criminal violations the industry has engaged in. Please contact us if you can do this. Almost all of this can be done remotely.

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Action Alert: Sign the MAAPL Petition to Extend the Eviction Moratorium

The CDC’s federal moratorium on evictions is scheduled to expire in just a couple of days on July 31, 2021. If this happens, thousands of families and individuals will lose their housing even while COVID-19 rates continue to rise. People of color have been disproportionately affected by both the COVID-19 pandemic and the foreclosure and eviction crisis, so BIPOC communities stand to be severely impacted by the lifting of the eviction moratorium.

We must act NOW and urge CDC Director Walensky to extend the moratorium again. The FHFA has already extended its moratorium in the face of increasing COVID rates, and the CDC must act to do the same to protect all American homeowners and tenants. Congress and the U.S. Senate must also take legislative to keep the moratorium in place to avoid worsening the impact of the latest wave of COVID cases on families and communities across the country.

Please take action and sign our Change.org petition to address this urgent situation!

Visit http://chng.it/GFKb9wstTy and sign the petition NOW!

After you sign the petition, please share this link widely! Help us get as many signatures as possible. Thank you!

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Action Alert: MAAPL Call-In NOW—Extend the National Eviction Moratorium!

MAAPL Call-In NOW! Tuesday, June 22
(Keep calling until June 25th)

The CDC must extend the national Eviction Moratorium!

Your voice gets results—CALL NOW!

Call the CDC — and your Congressional Representative & US Senators! Ask them to extend the CDC’s Eviction Moratorium.

Here’s what you do:
Call* and leave the message below with the CDC, Senator Warren, Senator Markey
and your Congressional Representative (See below for their numbers):

“Hello, my name is                         . I live in [name of your town].
Don’t let the CDC’s Eviction Moratorium order expire. It must continue until all danger of spreading COVID is past. A deluge of evictions is scheduled across the country. Massachusetts and the US are not ready for the dangers created by the predictable and big increase in homelessness and doubling-up of housing.

As my elected legislator, I am asking you to both contact the CDC and support
emergency legislation to:

  • Extend the federal Eviction Moratorium until end of September (as Fannie Mae
    and Freddie Mac have);
  • Ensure any new Moratorium covers all evictions (except where someone is
    endangering another person);
  • Define Residential Housing inclusively as all “Housing where a person lives.”

Here is my email address: _____________. Please keep me updated on your fight
for this Eviction Moratorium extension and against foreclosures.
Thank you.”

* We are including email addresses – calls are more powerful but you can do both.

When you have finished the call, e-mail Grace Ross, MAAPL coordinator at maaplinfo@yahoo.com. Tell her
whom you called and that you asked them to extend the CDC’s Eviction Moratorium and get in the crucial language.

If you don’t know who your Congressional Representatives is, go to WhereDoIVoteMA.com. Type in your address. It will tell you who that person is.

Washington, DC Office Numbers:
CDC (Center for Disease Control):
1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636) or email CDC-INFO
https://wwwn.cdc.gov/DCS/ContactUs/Form

Call both your Massachusetts Senators:

  • Senator Elizabeth Warren: (202) 224-4543
    elizabeth_warren@warren.senate.gov
  • Senator Edward Markey: (202)224-2742
    ed_markey@markey.senate.gov

Call your own Congressional Representative:
(Don’t know yours? Go to www.WhereDoIVoteMA.com)

  • Representative Richard Neal: (202) 225-5601
    Richard.neal@mail.house.gov
  • Representative James McGovern: (202) 225-6101
    James.mcgovern@mail.house.gov
  • Representative Lori Trahan: (202) 225-3411
    Lori.Trahan@mail.house.govrahan@mail.house.gov.
  • Representative Jake Auchincloss: (202) 225-5931
    Jake.auchincloss@mail.house.gov
  • Representative Katherine Clark: (202) 225-2836
    Katherine.clark@mail.house.gov
  • Representative Seth Moulton: (202) 225-8020
    Seth.moulton@mail.house.gov
  • Representative Ayanna Pressley: (202) 225-5111
    Ayanna.pressey@mail.house.gov
  • Representative Steven Lynch: (202) 225-8273
    Steven.lynch@mail.house.gov
  • Representative Bill Keating: (202) 225-3111
    Bill.keating@mail.house.gov
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Give Today: Crowdfund MAAPL Through Grassroots Funding Week!

Please help us celebrate your past involvement with MAAPL and all of the work you have helped us accomplish!

Good news: MAAPL recently received a Community Organizing Grant from the Peace Development Fund!

And they’re providing a great crowdfunding opportunity for MAAPL to reach out to you and multiply their gift to our movement! Now is the time to stop the next tsunami of foreclosures AND bring justice to all those who have faced illegal foreclosures—we can now show basically all have been illegal and even criminal, BUT we need the resources to do it!

You can give here: https://www.mightycause.com/story/Supportmapl

As part of our grant from the Peace Development Fund, MAAPL is participating in a crowdfunding campaign through Grassroots Funding Week. Our organization is being spotlighted TODAY under the banner of HOUSING IS A HUMAN RIGHT alongside other social justice organizations from across the country.

We’re reaching out to ask if you would consider making a grassroots contribution of $10-$100 (remember, MAAPL asks you to never give what you cannot afford) to support our fundraising campaign. These funds make our work and justice for all of us possible—this year is going to include grassroots engagement, impact lawsuits, anti-racist legislation, breakthrough research, new outreach and unprecedented wins.

And TODAY is our day of this WEEK of fundraising hosted for US. And we are going to keep it going as a major funding drive through Grace’s 60th birthday month of June.

THANKS in advance for your continuing participation and fight! And this week, please give a monetary gift and stay safe and well (and tell your friends, co-workers and family)!

Grace Ross and the entire MAAPL Board, including:
Magalys Troncoso
Liz Bewsee
Roxanne Reddington-Wilde
Dawn Duncan
Zakiya Alake
Esther Ngotho
Tony Branch
Lee Goldstein

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Join the MAAPL Team! MAAPL Seeks Paralegal/Project Manager

Help support the historic movement of pro se homeowners and tenants fighting illegal foreclosure and eviction in the Massachusetts Court System!  The Massachusetts Alliance Against Predatory Lending (MAAPL) is a nonprofit coalition of 70+ member and endorsing organizations: housing counseling agencies, legal services groups, social service agencies, and community-based social action groups, cooperating to reverse the ongoing foreclosure crisis in Massachusetts by means of:

  • Litigation – Developing materials for the use of pro se litigants fighting for their homes
  • Foreclosure Rights education for homeowners and tenants and educating the public about the foreclosure crisis
  • Legislative initiatives
  • Community Organizing of tenants, homeowners, and allies.

MAAPL seeks a part- to full-time Paralegal under the supervision of MAAPL’s statewide Coordinator and our attorneys to work shoulder-to-shoulder with homeowners and tenants fighting illegal foreclosures in parallel with related community organizing.

This position also requires project management skills, including online tracking, management of hard copy materials, and efficient production of pleadings. As a very small operation, administrative and tracking functions are necessarily shared. This position would require some leadership in those areas.

You will assist with intakes, research law, help revise our pro se litigants’ template, help prepare impact litigation at the state and—eventually—national level, provide instructional information and on-line template legal materials as well as coordinate their posting with the tech team, and collaborate with member organizations to ensure assistance for pro se homeowners.

You should be a self-starter, able to work effectively both independently and with a team, and committed to serving pro se homeowners with patience, including those in crisis or with limited English. Responsibilities include educating pro se homeowners and tenants regarding their rights. Some work meetings are in Worcester, working remotely is negotiable (and preferred for the vast majority of time during the COVID pandemic).

Requirements

The successful applicant will be:

  • A multi-tasker and voracious learner comfortable working in a fast-paced, nonprofit organization;
  • Interested in learning applicable law and providing litigation support to pro se homeowners, and (ideally) experienced in helping non-lawyers learn relevant law.
  • Able to draft and update legal template documents such as motions, complaints, and other documents as well as to research and support the production of legal briefs; and
  • Reliable at organization and attention to detail on a deadline.

Qualifications

Preference given to candidates who have dealt with foreclosure in their own lives;

  • Education: Paralegal certification or comparable experience;
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills;
  • Proficiency in conducting internet legal research;
  • Experience with Microsoft Office Suite and Google Apps;
  • Ability and willingness to assume increasingly more complex tasks and short-term projects;
  • Additional language(s) to English a plus.
  • Comfort with online word processing, listserves, project management tools.
  • Administrative and project management efficiency.
  • Demonstrated commitment to nonprofit work and opposing injustice!

For more information about MAAPL and our work, please visit our website at www.maapl.info

To apply for this position, please submit a resume, 3 references and a 3-page writing sample by email to Grace Ross, Coordinator, at MAAPLInfo@yahoo.com or by fax to 508-630-1686.

Position open immediately. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled, but you are encouraged to apply by January 11th, 2021.

The Mass Alliance Against Predatory Lending is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer, and encourages applications from all qualified individuals without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, disability or veteran status, or to other non-work related factors.

Organizing, Advocating, and Educating— When We Fight, We Win!

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Take Action! Nov. 17th MAAPL Call-In Day to the MA Senate

Photo of MA State HouseGet Anti-Foreclosure Language in the State Budget!
Now is the time to push for Justice!

Your voice gets results! Call your state Senator TODAY!

 
Also call Senate President Karen Spilka (617-722-1500); Senate Ways & Means Chairman Rodrigues (617-722-1114) and Vice-Chair Friedman (617-722-1432).
 
Ask them to put the Foreclosure & Eviction Moratorium language in the State Budget and support critical anti-foreclosure amendments.
Unlike the House budget, there is no one amendment to get a moratorium reinstated! So, ask for it in general and let your state Senator know why it is life-threatening not to have a moratorium and mention the two amendments that provide pieces of a moratorium!
 
Then, email your friends and family, post to Facebook, Twitter and other networks and connections you have. Ask them to call their legislators too. Let’s Create a Tidal Surge of Voices Against Foreclosure!
Here’s what to do:
If you don’t know who your senator is, go to WhereDoIVotema.com. Type in your address. It will tell you whom your elected officials are and their phone numbers.
 
What do I say? Leave the message below (Legislator’s offices are empty but staff  check phones regularly]:
 
“Hello, my name is                    . I live in [name of your town].
 
Please vote for the following anti-foreclosure budget amendments. Tell President Spilka, Ways & Means Chair Rodrigues and Vice-Chair Friedman you support them:
•     Amendment #410: Stop taxing mortgage debt reduction in Massachusetts when you receive a mortgage modification or lose your home to foreclosure.
•     Amendment #58: Create the Resolution Trust Fund so illegally-held, overpriced mortgages can be rewritten for homeowners to afford and paid into a state fund which help rebuild our economy and the communities hardest hit by foreclosures.
•     Re-instate the moratorium on foreclosures and evictions – we need this entire life-saving law! Especially given a curfew from 10pm to 5am and that children have to learn remotely. Please support amendments #362 and #388 and add a complete moratorium.
 
Please, as my Senator, will you fight to protect our homes during this COVID-19 emergency?
 
Thank you.”
 
When you have finished the call, e-mail Grace Ross, MAAPL Coordinator. Tell her who your Legislators are and that you asked them to get crucial anti-foreclosure language into the State Budget: maaplinfo@yahoo.com

Thank you for taking action! Please share this widely!

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MAAPL is Hiring an Organizer, Could It Be You?

MAAPL, the Massachusetts Alliance Against Predatory Lending, is seeking an energetic Statewide Organizer with a strong background in community organizing and legislative lobbying (organizing on anti-foreclosure or housing eviction issues a significant plus) for a temporary position averaging 3⁄4 time; there is the likelihood of a full-time, ongoing position (depending on funding.)

Read on for more information, or download our job posting ( PDF ). Please share this post and position information widely!

MAAPL is a coalition of more than 70 organizations, including community groups, state- wide advocacy, labor, communities of color organizations, legal services lawyers, private lawyers, and others who address the ongoing foreclosure crisis in Massachusetts. We also directly organize homeowners in areas of the state without a local group effort.

The successful candidate will work immediately on MAAPL’s:

  1. Statewide strategies to force a continuation of the foreclosure moratorium through grassroots action;
  2. Historic, pending anti-structural racism legislation, about which our base needs to be informed and activated to ensure the legislation is enacted; and
  3. Organizing for collective impact litigation to reverse the immediate and first ever (to our knowledge) rollback of Constitutional rights—especially for people of color—by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, our highest state court.

Job Description:

  • Work with MAAPL’s Coordinator on state legislative lobbying;
  • Work with the core MAAPL group leaders
  • Follow and implement the decisions of the Alliance.
  • Support MAAPL activities, help coordinate membership & sub-committee meetings and intra-coalition communications;
  • Ensure that administrative needs—such as keeping membership lists current, tracking legislative responses, etc,—are taken care of;
  • Expand the Alliance’s statewide network, including leading outreach to grassroots and other member groups across the state;
  • Help build the infrastructure, and inform and activate members and others so MAAPL’s anti-racist and anti-sexist statewide legislation succeeds;
  • Coordinate volunteers and establish direct outreach and door-knocking/porch drop efforts, primarily on weekends (so work will include some weekends);
  • Support volunteers’ efforts and leadership development of core participants;
  • Participate in meetings;
  • Ensure that meeting announcements and notes for new local efforts go out;
  • Assist in ensuring the upkeep of website and listserv;
  • Help to organize and support the leadership of others to organize educational events and protests as necessary;
  • Be willing to learn successful organizing, policy, and legal strategies;
  • Support the maintenance of relationships with MAAPL members, media, elected officials, other community efforts, nonprofits, and religious organizations;
  • Coordinate MAAPL efforts to extend our legal support (both court and administrative strategies) support for homeowners facing foreclosure;
  • Ensure implementation of key policy initiatives, garner assistance from our Congressional leaders, and other creative initiatives to broaden our effectiveness.

Job requirements:

  • Attendance at MAAPL meetings
  • Ability to travel statewide
  • Solid communication skills
  • Background in statewide networking
  • Understanding of the legislative process and community organizing
  • Access to a car
  • Cell phone
  • Computer skills

Hours flexible; will require some weekend and evening time. Absolutely critical is the willingness to engage in and enjoy direct outreach to strangers; be supportive of the leadership of others, and possess skills in cooperative work and facilitation.

Preferred but not required experience: 2 – 3 years of community organizing; 2 years coalition staffing; 3 years grassroots legislative advocacy; 2 years volunteer coordination. Demonstrated commitment to supporting and working with diverse leadership. Bilingual/Bicultural a plus.

Hours average 30 hours per week – fluctuating as work demands (could expand to full- time pending availability of funds).

People of color, women, those of other nationalities, gay/lesbian/bisexual/trans encouraged to apply.

To apply for the MAAPL Statewide Organizer position, please send a resume, cover letter, and list of references to maaplinfo@yahoo.com. If you have questions about this position, please contact MAAPL at 508-630-1686, and we will return the call.

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MA Moratorium Lifts: A Message from MAAPL

Friends,

We continue to fight for the Moratorium on Evictions and Foreclosures and you should, too. In the meantime, do not panic. Remember:

  1. You cannot be evicted without a decision against you from a judge and the court has to have issued an execution and you have to receive at least a 48 hour notice from a Constable.

• Nothing can happen to get you evicted without warning and without having time to act.

2. If you are pre-auction, remember that no auction can occur until there have been three weeks of advertising in a newspaper in circulation in your area. You are legally required to receive a written notice, yourself, of the auction date and time.

• AND you cannot be evicted, even if there is an auction, without #1 above.

3. You win by learning your rights and working with others.

If you have not been in touch with your local anti-foreclosure organization or the Mass Alliance Against Predatory Lending, get in touch now.There are many proactive steps that you can take.

  • We continue to have more incremental wins. That means that we are winning step by step.
  • What we knew to do to defend your home 6 months ago, when the COVID crisis hit, is much less than we know now.

Do not isolate. Do not panic. Do not try to act alone. Be in touch.

Victory comes when we win together.

Love,

Grace

P.S. Continue to send those emails to legislators! We still must demand this Moratorium. Not only are COVID cases rising, with many areas of the state reentering the red zone, but also compared to last April, we now have lots of school children who are not allowed to go to school and must study from a home. So we have even more reason for the moratorium now. The flu season is also coming. Adding that to the continuing COVID pandemic means that flu season may have a much more destructive impact this year.

Remind your Legislators not only of your story, but also of the reality that we are all facing!

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Keep Up the Fight! Tell Your Legislators to Extend the Moratorium!

Share with everyone you know, re-post everywhere: Facebook, etc…

MAAPL friends & members—raise your voice! Demand that the Legislature extend the COVID Emergency Moratorium on foreclosures & evictions. Keep people healthy and safe in their homes, and keep the state’s economy moving.

Even if the Moratorium expires, we need to keep speaking up and demanding it be reinstated to protect our homes, families, neighbors and communities!

Sample email text is below. Add your own story if you can. It makes a difference. With the legislators NOT in their offices, email is the most direct communication method!

The House Ways & Means member email addresses are at the bottom of this post.

Please email House Ways & Means Committee members and your own state Representative:

SUBJECT LINE: “Continue Moratorium on Foreclosures & Evictions, save homes AND lives!”

Dear Representative,

I am asking you to continue the state’s Moratorium on Foreclosures and Evictions. Pass H.5018: An Act to Guarantee Housing Stability during the COVID-19 Emergency and Recovery. Keep all foreclosure and eviction protections in the bill. More than ever, we need to protect people’s ability to remain in their homes.

Especially during this COVID emergency, people must be able to remain safe and healthy in their homes. The Moratorium has been life-saving. COVID numbers are rising again. Those most likely to die are front-line workers, people of color and seniors. Those paying on over-priced, predatory mortgage loans are even less able to afford them now. COVID has placed all at high risk of foreclosure and eviction.

Even as we are slowly getting the courts to recognize the illegality of almost all foreclosures, asking judges to spend extra time on a deluge of reopened eviction cases is unrealistic. We must protect people’s ability to hold on to their homes and health.

This is my story: [insert your personal story here]

Thank you,

[Insert your Name, Address and Town here]

If you do not know your own state Representative’s name and email address,  you can find them at www.WhereDOIVoteMA.com.

Email Committee members individually or put this list in BCC and email all of them at once.

Email the members of the House Ways & Means Committee (www.malegislature.gov/Committees/Detail/H34 ) listed below and your own Representative:

•   Chairman Aaron Michlewitz (aaron.M.Michlewitz@mahouse.gov)
•   Vice-Chair Rep. Denise Garlick (denise.Garlick@mahouse.gov)
•   Liz Malia (liz.Malia@mahouse.gov)
•   Thomas Walsh (thomas.Walsh@mahouse.gov)
•   Thomas Stanley (thomas.Stanley@mahouse.gov)
•   James Arciero (James.Arciero@mahouse.gov)
•   Brian Ashe (brian.Ashe@mahouse.gov)
•   Sean Garballey (sean.Garballey@mahouse.gov)
•   Carolyn Dykema (carolyn.Dykema@mahouse.gov)
•   Russell Holmes (russell.Holmes@mahouse.gov)
•   Paul Schmid (paul.Schmid@mahouse.gov)
•   Josh Cutler (josh.Cutler@mahouse.gov)
•   Carole Fiola (carole.Fiola@mahouse.gov)
•   Mary Keefe (mary.Keefe@mahouse.gov)
•   Jay Livingstone (jay.Livingstone@mahouse.gov)
•   Alan Silvia (alan.Silvia@mahouse.gov
•   Daniel Hunt (daniel.Hunt@mahouse.gov)
•   Christine Barber (christine.Barber@mahouse.gov)
•   Carlos Gonzalez (carlos.Gonzalez@mahouse.gov)
•   Jose Tosado (jose.Tosado@mahouse.gov)
•   Gerald Cassidy (gerard.Cassidy@mahouse.gov)
•   John Barrett (john.barrett@mahouse.gov)
•   Natalie Higgins (natalie.Higgins@mahouse.gov)
•   Brian Murray (Brian.Murray@mahouse.gov)
•   Chynah Tyler (Chynah.Tyler@mahouse.gov)
•   Bud Williams (bud.Williams@mahouse.gov)
•   Andres Vargas (andy.vargas@mahouse.gov)
•   Todd Smola (Todd.Smola@mahouse.gov)
•   Angelo D’Emilia (Angelo.D’Emilia@mahouse.gov)
•   Donald Berthiaume (donald.Berthiaume@mahouse.gov)
•   Hannah Kane (hannah.Kane@mahouse.gov)
•   James Kelcourse (james.kelcourse@mahouse.gov)
•   David Muradian (david.Muradian@mahouse.gov)
•   Timothy Whalen (timothy.Whelan@mahouse.gov)

If you can, please BCC maaplinfo@gmail.com so we know what you sent!

Thanks! This way lies Justice!

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Action Alert: Vote in Boston Globe Poll to Extend the Moratorium!

An article in today’s Boston Globe (September 12, 2020) asks readers an important question: Should Massachusetts extend its eviction moratorium for another year? The article features pro and con opinion pieces from Rep. Mike Connolly, co-lead sponsor of the bill to extend the moratorium, and Skip Schloming, the Director of the Small Property Owners Association, respectively.

A reader poll asking whether the moratorium should be extended can be found at the bottom of the article. The No votes are now ahead, so we need people to show their support for a moratorium!

Please vote in the poll and support extending the moratorium on evictions and foreclosures! Voting is still open on Sunday, September 13th.

Let’s make it clear—Massachusetts needs an extended moratorium!

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Breaking News: CDC Issues Federal Eviction Moratorium for Renters Through the End of 2020

On September 1, 2020, the CDC issued a federal eviction moratorium through Dec. 31, 2020.

There are two important caveats: this moratorium only protects against evictions for non-payment of rent and NOT where a state or local moratorium already exists. We’re not sure what this means for Massachusetts renters at this time.

For those covered under this new federal moratorium, here is a link to a form created by the Centers for Disease Control ( PDF ) to fill out and document income below a pretty high cap and income impacted by COVID-19. You also swear that you will pay whatever partial rent you can and a few other things.

What will this mean for Mass rent-payers given the existing state-wide moratorium through Oct. 17, 2020 (that will continue to be extended since our economy is not fully “open” yet)? We will post more information when we know.

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