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GINOWAN, Okinawa — Some Japanese citizens living on U.S. bases could miss out on their stimulus checks this year.

That’s because their local governments don’t know where they are.

About half the Japanese government applications for stimulus checks mailed to Okinawa base residents have been returned because the applicants listed their street addresses instead of their postal addresses when they registered with their municipalities, according to Okinawa officials.

Municipalities began sending out applications for the stimulus checks to eligible citizens in April, but Okinawa officials said 276 letters were returned with no forwarding address.

Mail is not delivered to base homes. Military families pick up their mail at post boxes at the base post offices, and street addresses won’t work.

Officials on mainland Japan said they had no problems notifying eligible recipients who live in base housing.

In order to boost the stagnant economy, the Japanese government decided to offer the stimulus checks — called Teigaku kyufukin or the Supplementary Income Payments — to Japanese nationals and persons registered as alien residents as of Feb. 1.

A normal stimulus check is for 12,000 yen (about $127). Persons 65 or older or those who are 18 or younger are eligible for 20,000 yen (about $212).

Families with more than one child receive an additional benefit. A one-time child-rearing allowance of 36,000 yen ($381) per child will be paid for the second and subsequent children.

People who believe they are eligible but have not received an application should contact their local government as soon as possible, said Satoshi Miyagi, assistant director of the General Affairs Division in the Ginowan City Office.

Miyagi said he’s been trying to locate 32 families who listed their mailing addresses as Futenma housing on Camp Foster.

Okinawa City reported 132 undelivered notices for people registered as living on Kadena Air Base, Camp Shields and the Plaza Housing Area on Camp Foster.

Other local governments reporting the problem include Kitanakagusuku, covering parts of Camp Foster; Chatan, covering parts of Camp Foster and Camp Lester; and Urasoe, responsible for Camp Kinser.


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