|Mayor Martin J. Walsh joined the Boston Tax Help Coalition and community partners for National Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) Awareness Day, to launch the 2017 tax season at Dorchester House. The event highlighted the free tax preparation and asset building services offered by the Boston Tax Help Coalition.
The Boston Tax Help Coalition, a public-private partnership of over 30 organizations, managed by the Mayor’s Office of Financial Empowerment (OFE), provides free tax preparation and comprehensive asset building opportunities to low and moderate-income residents in Boston. The Coalition seeks to maximize the EITC and provide access to savings strategies to help taxpayers build wealth and pay down debt.
“I am grateful to the Boston Tax Help Coalition for their assistance in providing residents with the expert help that’s needed during tax season,” said Mayor Walsh. “The Coalition has been providing free tax assistance by IRS certified volunteers for 16 years and since its founding, over 150,000 free tax returns have been prepared for our city’s residents.”
The free tax services provided by the Coalition are available to Boston residents who earned $54,000 or less in 2016. It is the Coalition’s mission to broaden pathways from poverty to financial empowerment by maximizing the impact of the earned income and other tax credits through quality, free tax preparation, financial education and economic stability opportunities. In 2016 the Boston Tax Help Coalition served over 13,000 residents and returned $24 million dollars in refunds and credits directly to taxpayers.
There are 35 tax sites throughout Boston’s neighborhoods, with support in the following eight languages: Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Haitian Creole, Cape Verdean Creole, Somali, Arabic, and Portuguese. Free tax services in American Sign Language are also available by appointment.
“The Boston Tax Help Coalition shares our commitment to building brighter futures and improving economic outcomes for underserved individuals and business owners,” said Gwen Robinson, Director of Corporate Responsibility at Santander Bank, as she joined Mayor Walsh for today’s launch event. “As this tax season begins, we are especially proud to play a role in supporting the work of the Boston Tax Help Coalition. The free tax preparation assistance is an essential component to building the financial capability of low- and moderate income families and small businesses in Boston.”
For more information, including locations and hours of tax sites, can be found at http://www.bostontaxhelp.org/.