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Free Tax Prep Clinics Begin Next Week

by Katie Pyzyk — January 23, 2012 at 12:30 pm 1,231 14 Comments

Tax season is officially upon us, as all businesses must mail out employee W-2 forms by next week. Arlington County is offering free clinics for those seeking help filling out tax forms.

The sessions are said to be for “people with low or moderate income,” and criteria for each session is listed below. Attendees must bring photo ID, all W-2 and 1099 forms, social security cards for each family member and information on all other income received in 2011. If it’s available, also bring a copy of last year’s tax return and bank account numbers for direct deposit.

The schedule is as follows:

  • Arlington Central Library (1015 N. Quincy St)  Tuesdays & Thursdays from 10:30 a.m. to 2:45 p.m., February 2-April 17. No appointments are necessary, customers are handled on a first-come, first-served basis. Spanish speakers will be available.
  • Columbia Pike Library (816 S. Walter Reed Dr)  Tuesdays 1:15-7:45 p.m., Fridays & Saturdays 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., February 3-April 14. No appointments are necessary, customers are handled on a first-come, first-served basis. Spanish speakers will be available
  • Arlington Department of Human Services (2100 Washington Blvd)  Tuesdays 5:30-7:00 p.m., February 7-April 10. No appointments are necessary, customers are handled on a first-come, first-served basis. Spanish speakers will be available. Customers may not have an individual income that exceeds $25,000 or a family income that exceeds $45,000.
  • ECDC Enterprise Development Group (901 S. Highland St)  Tuesdays 6:00-9:00 p.m., Fridays 6:00-9:00 p.m., Saturdays 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., February 3-April 14. No appointments are necessary, customers are handled on a first-come, first-served basis. Customers may not have an income that exceeds $50,000.
  • AARP Travel Team (Only available to people unable to leave their homes) Appointments only. Call 703-960-0428 to schedule an appointment.
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  • Spiteful

    Let the Bondi comments begin.

  • novasteve

    Wait a second, you have to bring a photo ID to go to a tax advice session but the same liberals organizing this would throw fits over photo ID to vote?

    • novasteve

      I’m dead serious. Liberals say that photo ID laws for voting are some how racist or discirminate against the poor EVEN if provisions are made for “cost free” photo IDs. So why are these same liberals requiring low income people to bring a photo ID to a tax session? I thought photo ID was racist or discriminated against the poor?

      • Swag

        Last time I checked, you didn’t get money deposited directly into your bank account after voting.

        They’re setting up direct deposit of refunds and need to make sure that the accounts match the returns or somesuch.

        (ps: The idea that having a photo ID to vote is some huge restriction and hurts turnout is asinine.)

        • Bluemontsince1961

          I’ve used H&R Block for years and I’ve always had to show my photo ID to confirm identity, confirm my address, etc. for direct deposit of my refunds, and ditto when I write my check to H&R block for my tax preparation, just like other businesses requires a photo ID when someone writes a check. And I’m middle-class white as rice.

      • Nancy

        Novasteve, ID’s are required when filing taxes because 1) SS numbers or ITIN numbers are being used and its a way to fight identity theft in a public setting and 2) an exchange of money is involved with bank accounts or credit union accounts, whether positive or negative on the part of the taxpayer. It’s very sensitive personal information being exchanged.
        Offering photo IDs is a good idea, but it’s a program that still needs exploring and proper promotion to really get into communities. It decreases turnout from those without IDs because it communicates a roadblock a point of intimidation to those in communities where redlining, jerrymandering and all out interrogation tactics have been used for nearly a century to deter minorities from their voting rights. It has less to do with whether they today all have IDs or not and everything to do with the history (and by history it’s nice you think it’s “back in the day”, but there was rampant racism in business, voting and financial institutions as recently as the late 80′s. Banks didn’t get attacked for redlining till the mid-90′s), because like or not the bad taste of history has not yet left (not while the state of Arizona exists, for example).
        Also, the number one reason for even getting a photo ID in most cases is applying for a Driver’s License, and there are many inner cities and underserved communities (heck even well-off but socially urban communities) where many just don’t drive. And if the requirement’s going to be to get a Photo ID to vote, many apathetic to the process will just see it as one more roadblock to voting and be deterred by it. Thus, the racist aspect is more about the message of roadblocks it sends more than it is the actual roadblock itself.

  • charlie chaplin

    Too easy.

  • buzz

    No kidding, novasteve. Isn’t it “racist” to require people to produce photo IDs?

  • Bender

    Free? You mean the County is not spending any money on this?

    • JohnB

      It’s a Federally supported program.

      • Zoning Victim

        Meaning it’s not free, but it’s a riot that the government is offering to do your taxes. I’m sure they’re striving to get them every tax deduction they can think of; if they were smart they’d do the taxes of high income people instead.

  • Bluemontsince1961

    Funny thing about voting. As long as I’ve been voting (since 1976 absentee when I was in college), I’ve always had to product a photo ID, whether absentee voting in 1976 when I was in college in St. Louis or here in Arlington. As far as I know, everyone – at least at my precinct in Arlington, has to show a photo ID, and signs are clearly posted as such in every election I’ve ever voted in – at least at my precinct in Arlington. The last several elections, I’ve seen those signs posted bi-lingually, so I’m not sure that there could be any issue with any discrimination, at least where I vote. It seems very clear and straight-forward – photo ID required for all voters, and it is posted in English and Spanish – and I’ve never seen or heard of this causing any upset or controversy among Arlingtonians of any political persuasion. As far as I know, Arlington is still quite liberal and overwhelmingly Democrat, yet this requirement doesn’t seem to have caused any upset, protest, or controversy among any of the segments of Arlington’s population.

    • Zoning Victim

      It’s not a requirement. If you have your photo ID you have to show it, if you don’t, you have to sign an affidavit stating that you are who you say you are. I’ve seen it happen several times in Arlington.

      IDs for voting have always been seen as racist because in the distant past many black people didn’t have any ID. Many didn’t even have birth certificates to get an ID in the first place because they were born at home. Back before the civil rights movement, the governments just wouldn’t issue IDs to black people in places like Alabama and the rest of the deep south or they would just intimidate any black people who attempted to get their ID. With the black population having very few IDs relative to their numbers, requiring IDs to vote was very racist.

      I’m not sure why that’s still seen as true to this day and age where everybody has an ID or easy access to get one, but in the beginning there was a clear link between requiring IDs to vote and racism.

  • http://khfinancial.ca/ Darrell Keith

    Thanks for provided this information to us. I’m pretty much hopeful to know that Free Tax Prep Clinics Begin Next Week. I hope I will be able to attend that event. Thanks mate.

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