One of the most important times of the year for many working American Citizens is tax season, which begins in January. During this season, many Americans spend $40-$100 to file tax returns using companies such as H&R Block and TurboTax, but for the last five years Pensacola State College, has hosted a free tax service for Pensacola residents making less than $49,000 a year.
This service is hosted by V.I.T.A. (Voluntary Income Tax Assistance), a subsidiary of United Way and is staffed by 30 volunteers throughout Pensacola with 16 total volunteers located on the Pensacola Campus. The service will be available to the public until April 17.
Patricia Carter, a Pensacola State Student said “The free tax program offered at Pensacola State College was introduced to me by work study.”
Each volunteer has been specially trained to file any kind of tax report.
“I have been volunteering for 2 years and on average I see 10 to 15 people a day,” James Poyle said. “The people that take an advantage of this free service are from different backgrounds: senior citizens, college students, to people outside the school.”
“Students should use us because we are free,” Nancy Taylor, director of the program, said. “Most students file a 1099 MISC and have simple returns no matter what service they use. Why should they have to pay $75 to get money that is rightfully theirs?” Taylor later shared that while there is only one tax service available at the Pensacola campus, they plan on expanding and making their services available to PSC students on the Warrington and Century campuses next year.
For the use of the free tax service provided by Pensacola State College you will need your: Social Security Card, Photo proof of identity, all tax forms (W2’s, 1098, and 1099), tax payer banking information or valid mailing address, estimated tax payment, and last year’s tax return. The location for the free tax prep at the main Pensacola State College campus in the lobby of Building 96 on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 10 am for 4 pm as well as Tuesdays/Thursdays from 10 am to 8 pm. For students who don’t have time to make it in during the week the service is available on Saturdays from 10 am to 2 pm. For more information students can visit www.unitedwayescambia.org or call (850)444-7128.