Taco Tax Tuesday
On Tuesday, April 18th, from 10am until 8pm, the offices of United Way of Kern County (5405 Stockdale Hwy, Suite 200) will be transformed into a tax return oasis for procrastinators who have waited until the last possible moment to file. Additionally, the first 200 tacos will be given away for free, just like the free tax preparation by IRS-trained volunteers. The effort is one of many the Kern VITA Partnership is using to reach out to low and moderate-income wage earners this tax season.
The VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) program provides free tax preparation and filing to individuals and families making under $60,000. The Kern VITA Partnership is made up of United Way of Kern County (UWKC), Mexican American Opportunities Foundation, Greenfield Family Resource Center, Bessie Owens Primary School, St. John the Baptist Church, The Offices of Assembymember Rudy Salas, and Kern County Child Support Services.
“Kern County has a huge number of working families who either don’t file at all because they think they make too little for it to make a difference; or else DO file, but with companies that either charge way too much, offer refund anticipation loans with huge fees attached, or are not equipped with the information these families need to access their Earned Income Tax Credit refund,” explained Susana Espinoza, Community Impact Coordinator for United Way of Kern County (UWKC), the lead agency of the Kern VITA Partnership. “Tax guidelines have transformed so dramatically in just the past six months—it’s really important for people to seek experienced, reputable sources to help them prepare and file their return.”
There’s a lot at stake for Kern County. Last year, the average Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) refund was $2,200. A total of over three million refund dollars returned to Kern, where it was injected back into the local economy. One in five residents who qualified for the refund DID NOT claim it.
Taxpayers who wish to file can call 661-336-6829 or 661-834-1820 to set up an appointment or get more information. Kern County residents could also visit THIS PAGE for more VITA details.