The Mount Aloysius College Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, staffed by Mount Aloysius students, is continuing to help area residents file their tax returns. Due to COVID-19, the Mount Aloysius College VITA program is only accepting returning clients and cannot accept new clients at this time. Volunteers will be reaching out to returning clients to schedule appointments.
Michael Shipman, CPA, and his team of student volunteers offer free tax filing services for community members in need. The program is available to taxpayers who generally make less than $57,000 annually, persons with disabilities, and those with limited English-speaking skills.
“We’re excited to offer our services to the community again this year, even if it is at limited capacity,” said Shipman, who is in charge of the VITA site at Mount Aloysius College. “We hope to offer appointments to more community members later in the season if time and distancing permit.”
Because of their reduced schedule this year, VITA volunteers are strongly encouraging taxpayers to use the step-by-step IRS FreeFile Program delivered by TurboTax to remotely complete federal and state tax returns.
Last year, despite the state-wide shutdown, VITA volunteers at Mount Aloysius still managed to prepare 225 federal and state tax returns, as well as a number of local income tax returns and property tax / rent rebate filings. Excluding local returns and property tax / rent rebate filings, they were able to achieve a total refund amount of $246,904 for their clients.
The Mount Aloysius Business Department has provided the VITA service to the community since 2010. Each year, the VITA program provides an essential service on which many area residents rely. With faculty supervision, student volunteers make a difference in low-income taxpayer’s lives, boost the financial stability of their community, and gain valuable skills for future employment in the accounting field.
For additional information about the VITA program at Mount Aloysius College, call (814) 886-6621 or visit mtaloy.edu/vita.