Mayor Menino Launches 12th Annual EITC Campaign
Last year’s campaign served 11,500 taxpayers, returned $18 million in credits and refunds
Mayor Thomas M. Menino today announced the launch of the City of Boston’s Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) campaign, commencing its 12th tax season. Spearheaded by the Mayor’s Office of Jobs and Community Services, in collaboration with non-profit, corporate and community partners, the program provides low- and moderate-income taxpayers with free financial services, in a multi-pronged effort to reduce poverty in the City of Boston. During the 2012 tax season, the Boston EITC Campaign served 11,500 taxpayers, returning a total of $18 million in credits and refunds.
“This program provides free financial assistance to the hardworking people across the City of Boston and helps them make the most of their annual tax return,” Mayor Menino said. “I urge all eligible residents to visit their nearest location, as we work to surpass last year’s tremendous results.”
This year’s effort kicked off at the City’s newest tax prep site, the Tierney Community Center in the newly-rehabilitated Old Colony Housing Development in South Boston, as the Boston Housing Authority mobilizes to connect their residents to this valuable service.
From January to April, 25 community-based tax sites will provide free tax preparation and asset building services to eligible households. Through the Ambassadors Program, tax preparation will be delivered at various sites in eight languages: English, Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Cape Verdean Creole, Haitian Creole, Portuguese and Somali.
Residents interested in learning more about the program should visit: http://www.bostontaxhelp.org/. The website provides eligibility information, as well as a list of all available locations and operating hours.
An expanded wealth building strategy is also being launched this tax season. At eight tax sites there will be a “Financial Check-up” provided to all taxpayers. This “Check-up” will allow for a cross-trained volunteer to provide intake, credit advising, a FICO score and a benefits referral to provide some financial guidance to the taxpayers. More than 75 volunteers are currently trained as Financial Guides, with the goal of having 100 serving at the eight sites.