The Year Ahead: NCTC in 2012
Just like you, we at NCTC are gearing up for another exciting tax season. While we’re not anticipating any last second tax law changes like last year (how annoying was that?), there is plenty to look forward to in 2012. Here’s a quick peek at what NCTC is going to be up to next year:
- State of the Field Report – Last year, we issued our very first State of the Field Report. The report includes information on VITA statistics and performance, NCTC programs, NCTC membership, advocacy campaigns, client and program success stories. You can look forward to this year’s report in mid-January.
- NCTC Online University – In 2011, we debuted our online learning management system, NCTC Online University. Pilot programs tested out training their volunteers online – at their own pace, on their own schedule. This year we’ve doubled the number of courses to six and built a flexible and sophisticated custom online Volunteer Management Platform to make the registration and training process much smoother in 2012. The Online University is now available for all to use for FREE!
- Trainings & Info Circles –NCTC is poised to offer more trainings and information circles than ever before. Topics will be again tailored to topics of your choosing and the 2012 tax season. And don’t forget – NCTC affiliates enjoy all info circles for FREE year-round!
- VITA Act and Funding – As you know, NCTC was instrumental in creating the VITA Matching Grant Program. After having the VITA Act introduced in the Senate in 2010 and both houses of Congress in 2011, we’ll again be pushing for codification of and greater support for the program. The Act increases the grant funding, expands the scope of VITA to more specifically support asset-building work, and provides for more technical assistance. Our advocates on the ground will once again be vital in moving this legislation forward!
- Refundable Tax Credits (EITC, CTC, AOTC) – Extensions of improvements in the Earned Income Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit and American Opportunity Tax Credit are set to expire at the end of 2012. We all know how vital these tax credits are to our clients, so NCTC will once again be ensuring that they are kept strong – and that their importance is considered in any larger, tax-reform discussions in D.C.
- Financial Aid U – Last year, Financial Aid U programs helped low-income and first-generation college students complete more than 3,000 FAFSA applications, which gave them access to more than $22 million in financial aid. For this year’s tax season, we’ve expanded the program to 12 organizations around the country and plan to help even more students!
- Schedule C Pilot – This year, we’ve expanded the Schedule C pilot program to four more organizations, making a total of 16! In addition to providing tax preparation services to the self-employed, we are also developing comprehensive training for preparing Schedule C returns for the NCTC Online University.
- Skills Based Volunteerism – Building on last year’s successful program, NCTC has added seven organizations to our Skills Based Volunteerism initiative, making a total of 17 programs coast to coast! Last year, 130 volunteers provided more than 350 hours, and we are expecting to increase the number of these highly skilled volunteers yet again this year.
2012 should prove to be another successful, if exhausting, year. Luckily, we are motivated by the good work that our members are doing and the clients they serve.
By Dan Fair, Manager of Communications & Member Relations