Archived Story

Volunteers needed for tax preparation

Published 11:11am Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Volunteer Connections of Central Alabama is seeking screeners, greeters, preparers and a computer guru to assist with free tax preparation.

Carley Cummins, program director for VCCA, said free tax preparation is offered for people with low to moderate income (those making less than $52,000 annually), seniors 60 years and older and disabled.

“Last year we prepared taxes for 1,200 taxpayers,” Cummins said. “We got back almost $1.5 million in federal funds for our community.”

Cummins said screeners assist with intake forms for those seeking tax preparation, greeters welcome the public and the computer guru assists in making sure software is updated. She said only tax preparers will actually complete taxes, but all volunteers must complete confidentiality and ethics training.

“The public has to feel comfortable knowing when they come to us their information will not get out,” Cummins said.

She said training for tax preparers will be held Jan. 8, 9 and 10. Participants can complete the training online or in person and may be certified to do beginner, intermediate or advanced level taxes, but certification must be complete no later than Jan. 21.

“It’s stimulating (to volunteer),” said Barbara Willis, who has served as a tax preparer for 22 years. “Tax preparers learn for themselves. I’ve learned a lot of things to help myself and to help others.”

Cummins said taxes will be prepared at the VCCA office from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning Jan. 28. She said that schedule will continue through February, but will be reduced to Mondays and Tuesdays in March.

Cummins said VCCA will resume the three day a week schedule in April, but allow volunteers to work any schedule they wish.

“We do not expect our volunteers to work from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.,” Cummins said. “Volunteers get to determine their own schedule and how much they chose to volunteer. We’re very flexible.”

To learn more about Volunteer Connections, call 256-234-0347 or visit their website at vcca.blog.com.

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