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This week marks the halfway point to the deadline for filing for the Permanent Fund Dividend.
Filing began Jan. 1; it ends at 11:59 p.m. March 31.
The deadline sneaks up quickly. First, it's the start of the filing period, and then the period is over and the year is three months old and accelerating quickly.
After that it's just a few short months until Gov. Sean Parnell announces the amount of the dividend in September. Distribution begins in October and is done by November.
Then, another year is almost over.
Whew, that went fast.
Clearly, there's no time to waste in filing for the dividend if it hasn't been done already.
Once the time is made to do it, it's simple. Everything is available online at www.pfd.alaska.gov.
On the website, applicants are directed to three choices: 1. "First Time Filers - Click Here;" 2. "Apply online with a printed signature page," or 3. "Apply online with an electronic signature."
The website is easy to navigate; directions walk applicants right through the process.
Any eligible Alaskan can do it. Even Alaska's youngest students, given their abilities with electronics, can navigate the site, but if they are under 18, then an adult needs to file on their behalf. If in doubt, check it out with a kid directing the way. They know how to do it online.
So do 345,942 other Alaskans. More than 646,800 Alaskans received checks in 2012. That indicates about another 300,000 likely still need to take a few minutes to sign up.
Don't be last or forget altogether; get it done this week.