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May 15, 2012

UW-Eau Claire VITA volunteers process record number of tax returns

VITAUW-Eau Claire VITA coordinator Brenda Thalacker (sitting) reviews the tax return accounting student and VITA volunteer Crystal Gaestel (standing) has prepared for her VITA clients.

University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire accounting students processed a record number of returns during the 2011 tax season, according to Brenda Thalacker, coordinator of the UW-Eau Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program.

VITA is a program of the Internal Revenue Service and Wisconsin Department of Revenue.

UW-Eau Claire students prepared 645 state and federal returns for free for taxpayers with adjusted gross annual incomes under $50,000. In addition, 96 individuals prepared and filed their own 2011 tax returns for free using the new kiosks located on the UW-Eau Claire campus. With the addition of the kiosks, the total number of returns processed by VITA jumped to 741, 39 more returns than last year.

”Our IRS coordinator told us our kiosk numbers were especially impressive for a first-time site,” said Thalacker. “The kiosks were especially popular with our student clients.”

To use the new online VITA kiosk service, taxpayers must have earned less than $57,000 in 2011 and have a valid UW-Eau Claire email address. The kiosk site was sponsored by the Internal Revenue Service with additional funding provided by UW-Eau Claire Academic Affairs/Office of the Provost.

For more information about the UW-Eau Claire VITA, contact Brenda Thalacker, UW-Eau Claire Department of Accounting and Finance.

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