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Mount Aloysius and Penn Highlands Offer Free Tax Help

Posted on: January 17, 2017

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CAPTION: Vita Volunteers at Mount Aloysius College include, from left to right: Briana Platt, Ebensburg, Pa.; Kathryn Wills, Johnstown, Pa.; Angela Griffin, East Freedom, Pa.; Amanda Heatwole, Duncansville, Pa.; Aaron McGuire, Cresson, Pa; Alexandra Teeter, Johnstown, Pa.; Crystal Cosgrove, Johnstown, Pa. and Rachael Moreland. Gallitzin, Pa. Mount Aloysius College VITA Program is partnering with students from Penn Highlands Community College to serve the community.

CAPTION: VITA Volunteers at Mount Aloysius College include, from left to right: Briana Platt, Ebensburg, Pa.; Kathryn Wills, Johnstown, Pa.; Angela Griffin, East Freedom, Pa.; Amanda Heatwole, Duncansville, Pa.; Aaron McGuire, Cresson, Pa; Alexandra Teeter, Johnstown, Pa.; Crystal Cosgrove, Johnstown, Pa. and Rachael Moreland. Gallitzin, Pa. Mount Aloysius College VITA Program is partnering with students from Penn Highlands Community College to serve the community.

Cresson, Pa. – Mount Aloysius College invites families needing help with their tax returns to visit the College’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program.  VITA is now in its eighth year at Mount Aloysius College and this tax season MAC business students will once again be joined by accounting students from Penn Highlands Community College.  The collaboration between Mount Aloysius and Penn Highlands gives qualified area residents more locations for greater convenience.  VITA Tax preparation assistance will be available from January 23rd through April 13th.

Members of the Mount Aloysius Student Accounting Society (SAS) and Penn Highlands’ students in Accounting receive intensive IRS training and certification, required of all tax preparers.  VITA volunteer tax preparers include Mount Aloysius and Penn Highlands accounting majors and Mount Aloysius MBA grad students.  There is no cost for VITA Tax Assistance.

Dr. Brittany Anderson, professor of Business & Information Technology/Accounting at Mount Aloysius, is proud of the work of the VITA.  “Each year we continue to help more and more local residents with their tax returns,” she said.  “The taxpayers are in good hands, and we anticipate completing even more returns for our neighbor in the region this year.”        

In addition to free tax return preparation, the VITA student volunteers also offer free electronic filing (e-filing).  Individuals taking advantage of the e-file program should receive refunds in half the time compared to paper returns – and even faster when tax refunds are deposited directly into the taxpayer’s bank account.

The Mount Aloysius College VITA Office is located in College’s Athletic Convocation and Wellness Center, Room 201.  Hours of service are by appointment and it is best to call ahead.  The VITA access number for questions and appointments is 814-886-6621.  

There are two Pennsylvania Highlands Community College VITA locations.  These include the Richland Campus and Ebensburg Center.  The Richland Campus is located at 101 Community College in Johnstown, Pa., in the Workforce Education Center, Room A148.  The Ebensburg Center is located in the Hills Plaza Center on Route 22 in Ebensburg, Pa., in the Main Office.  Tax preparation at Penn Highlands requires an appointment made through the central VITA phone number, 814-886-6621.   

Taxpayers who wish to use the VITA program should treat the service no differently than if they were going to an accountant.  Items needed to complete a return may include: proof of identification (photo ID);  Social Security cards for you, your spouse and dependents ; birth dates for you, your spouse and dependents on the tax return; wage and earning statements (Form W-2, W-2G, 1099-R,1099-Misc) from all employers; interest and dividend statements from banks (Forms 1099); all Forms 1095, health insurance statements; health insurance exemption certificates, if received; and a copy of last year’s federal and state returns, if available; total paid for daycare provider and the daycare provider’s tax identifying number such as their Social Security number or business employer identification number.  If taxpayers wish to take advantage of direct deposit of refunds they need their bank account routing and account numbers.  A blank check will work for this.  To file taxes electronically on a married-filing-joint tax return, both spouses must be present to sign the required forms.  For additional information, or to make an appointment, call 814-886-6621.

Aerial Photo of the Mount Aloysius Campus