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Taxes and Telephones

It must be tax season, because our telephones are ringing off the hook!

“What do taxes and the United Way-Thomas Jefferson Area have to do with each other?” you ask?

The Thomas Jefferson Area Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) Coalition is one of our many successful collaborations with local nonprofits, businesses and government agencies. The Coalition’s goal is to reach the estimated 25% of taxpayers who qualify for but do not apply for the Earned Income Tax Credit – something that has been around for many years but is still not well-known.

Thank to various grants, the United Way has been able to hire an EITC Coalition Coordinator for the past three years to organize and orchestrate the efforts of the coalition members – to great effect. Every year, several hundred families and individuals have been helped, resulting in millions of dollars staying in our community and in people’s pocketbooks and bank accounts through saved fees, refunds and credits. This year we are fortunate to welcome back Pamela Frank who was a site coordinator last year and is now the coalition coordinator, along with running our Child Care Scholarship Program.

The coalition’s motto is Earn it. Keep it. Save it. which falls neatly within our United Way Achieving Self-Sufficiency focus area.

Free tax preparation from volunteers certified by the IRS is available to anyone who earned less than $49,000 in 2010. There are sites throughout Albemarle County, as well as in UVA Community Credit Union offices in Greene, Fluvanna, Louisa and Nelson counties. Click here for a listing of locations.

That is why our phone is ringing! Our Information and Referral line is the phone number on all the published materials for people to call with questions or to make an appointment. Some sites do take walk-ins, but don’t wait until the last two weeks or you may be disappointed! Some locations are open in the mornings; others have evening or weekend hours.

Martha Trujillo, our bilingual Information and Referral specialist, also prepares taxes for Spanish speaking workers, so her multi-tasking skills are tested every day as she has people waiting in the reception area while she also fields phone calls to answer questions and make appointments, as well as help people calling in with other health and human service needs.

Call our office at 434-972-1703 for more information or to make an appointment.


Posted by Kim Connolly


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