Join us along with federal, state and local elected and appointed officials as well as Community Action Agencies and local partners to help kick off the start of the 2017 tax season (for the 2016 tax year) on Friday, January 27 at 10:30 a.m. at Springfield Partners for Community Action (SPCA), 721 State Street, Second Floor in Springfield.
SPCA boasts one of the longest operating VITA sites in the state and is among the most productive. SPCA is celebrating 15 years of provide free tax assistance to the community at this event.
MASSCAP is the statewide association of the 23 Community Action Agencies (CAAs) in Massachusetts, federally mandated antipoverty agencies, that serve over 650,000 people across the state, in virtually every city and town, with services that promote stability, opportunity, and economic mobility. The VITA sites run by CAAs play a critical role in addressing inequality and fighting poverty by offering low income tax payers access to free tax prep services that will result in resources from the Earned Income Tax Credit and other tax credits – programs that have been noted as among the most effective anti-poverty tools available.
21 of 23 Community Action Agencies in Massachusetts offer free tax preparation conducted by more than 430 IRS trained volunteers at more than 40 Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites. CAAs help over 19,000 low income tax payers with free tax preparation bringing back to these families over $32 million. And because the service is free, low income tax payers save an average of $300 in paid tax preparation service fees per return which adds up to $4.5 million across the CAA network. Furthermore, they are connected to a series of other services Community Action Agencies provide such as Head Start, fuel assistance, SNAP, WIC, job training, asset development services including an individual development account, credit counselling, banking services, and financial literacy. CAAs that run VITA sites lead or are part of local EITC coalitions that share resources and best practices that each year result in higher production and accuracy.