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April 15, 2011

UW-Eau Claire VITA Program to Receive 2011 Community Action Award

TaxesThe University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program has been selected by the Western Dairyland board of directors to receive the 2011 Western Dairyland community action award, according to Dr. D’Arcy Becker, chair of the UW-Eau Claire Department of Accounting and Finance.  A recognition luncheon will be held Friday, May 6, 2011 at 12 noon in the UW-Eau Claire Davies Center Alumni Room, said Becker.

VITA, a special program of the Internal Revenue Service and Wisconsin Department of Revenue, provides free tax return assistance to low income individuals and families.  UW-Eau Claire accounting students, working under a faculty adviser, have participated in the VITA program for over 20 years. Brenda Thalacker currently coordinates the program for the UW-Eau Claire Department of Accounting and Finance.  Past coordinators include Dr. Lucretia Mattson and Stacy Lacktorin-Revier.

VITA has completed a record number of tax returns this year, with a 33% increase in the number of tax returns processed since 2009.  In 2009, student volunteers in the program processed 527 returns. This year, VITA volunteers completed 702 tax returns.

Western Dairyland Community Action Agency, established in 1966 under the Economic Opportunity Act, seeks to improve the quality of life in west central Wisconsin by helping to alleviate poverty-related conditions and providing opportunities which enable people to advance economically and socially.  The agency is governed by a 24-member board of directors representing a cross section of the community: eight members are local elected officials, eight are representatives of the low-income population, and eight are representatives of community groups and organizations.

For more information about the UW-Eau Claire VITA program, contact Dr. D’Arcy Becker, chair, UW-Eau Claire Department of Accounting and Finance.

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