It’s good to see the value of VITA reemerging in key federal policy communications recently – the product of strong efforts by advocates and Congressional champions alike.
For example, as lawmakers begin to focus on budget decisions, nearly 50 of them have personally endorsed the need to ensure strong resources for Volunteer Income Tax Assistance in Fiscal Year 2014. Read the rest of this entry
President Obama’s call for substantially bolstering VITA reflects important recognition of the program’s great value to struggling taxpayers – and the VITA field’s strong advocacy efforts. And while chances of its enactment as-is are practically nil, it nonetheless challenges us to strengthen our advocacy work.
The federal matching grant for Volunteer Income Tax Assistance would grow to $18 million in Fiscal Year 2014, under the budget proposal the President unveiled Wednesday. That’s up from its $12 million level of recent years. Read the rest of this entry
If there’s any good news for taxpayers regarding across-the-board federal budget cuts that began to take effect March 1, it’s that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) does not expect the so-called “sequester” to delay tax refunds this spring.
Fill Chicago’s Soldier Field stadium with people. Or perhaps fill New York’s Madison Square Garden to capacity, do it again, and then a third time.
Either way, you’ll get a total of about 60,000 people. That’s a very rough idea of the number of tax filers who could be affected by cutting more than 5 percent from the federal grant supporting Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA), the kind of dangerous cut envisioned by the beginning of the “sequestration” process in Washington, D.C. Read the rest of this entry
As a new Congress and new tax-filing season get underway, a familiar proposal has reemerged for strengthening families’ financial security at tax time.
The VITA Act was reintroduced as H.R. 341 last week in the U.S. House of Representatives by Congressmen Mike Honda of California and Danny Davis of Illinois, two longtime supporters of the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program. Read the rest of this entry
Could tens of thousands of families lose access to VITA’s free tax preparation services in 2013?
The federal VITA grant appears destined for an 8.2 percent cut – about $984,000 – under across-the-board budget reductions scheduled to take place in January. This VITA damage could affect services for up to 34,700 households, by NCTC calculations. And it’s just one example of how so-called “sequestration” cuts could erode crucial education, health care, and human services, unless Congress soon takes action to avoid what otherwise will amount to a full 10 years of such annual reductions.
Those drastic measures are rooted in the way policymakers decided to approach federal deficit reduction late last year: Read the rest of this entry