Local

April 19, 2013

On the home stretch

Staff Sgt. Sara Luna, 912th Air Refueling Squadron, works with Theeraya Kline, volunteer spouse, at the March Air Reserve Base Volunteer Income Tax Assistance tax center. The all-volunteer staff at the March VITA tax center prepared and filed more than 820 federal and state tax returns for Tax Year 2012, for members of the March community, free of charge.

The March Air Reserve Base Volunteer Income Tax Assistance tax center has had another banner year, as the last week of tax preparation season comes to an end, April 19.

According to Ms. Effie White, VITA center volunteer, the all-volunteer staff excelled at accurately preparing, reviewing and filing tax returns for a large part of the March community.

“Most individuals who filed their returns electronically through the March ARB VITA site received their refunds within two to three weeks,” said White. “I could not be more impressed with our team of volunteers this year. Our team was comprised of three civilians, four 912th Air Refueling Squadron members, an U.S. Army officer and a few more volunteers who worked part-time, according to their schedules. Once again, we propelled the only VITA site in the Air Force Reserve Command to record numbers.”

U.S. Army Maj. Anthony Gordon, judge advocate, 358th Civil Affairs Brigade, explained that volunteering at the VITA tax center gave him the opportunity to interact with members representing the different services that make up the U.S. Armed Forces. Helping members take care of important tax obligations so they could focus on their jobs of protecting this nation was a pleasure, he said.

Major Deric Prescott, 951 RSPTS Staff Judge Advocate, explained that more than 820 returns were prepared and filed, as of April 4. “These returns resulted in over $906,000 in federal and $175,411 in state refunds – resulting in over one million dollars in refunds for our base population and veterans, while saving our members over $150,000 in tax preparation fees from a paid preparer,” said Prescott.

The VITA center was unable to provide service on the Unit Training Assembly weekends, due to a lack of volunteers. However, they were often seen working long after the doors were closed at 4 p.m.

Ms. Marylyn Hackett, volunteer office manager and retired 4th Air Force Chief Master Sgt., noted that although some clients were required to adjust their work schedules and endure longer wait-times for their returns, the advantage of having a tax center that understood the intricacies of military life, far outweighed any inconvenience. When 4 p.m. rolled around and customers were still present, the workflow kept going until the job was done, Hackett said.

Staff Sgt. Richard Kline and wife Theeraya, both volunteered in the tax center and as an added bonus, Theeraya frequently brought in baked goods for the volunteers and the clients.

“We started volunteering around Jan. 11. For hours, I would say about 75 total hours of my time was spent helping some of the younger Airmen in my squadron with preparing their taxes. I would walk them through the process, step-by-step, on how to properly file their taxes, so they truly understood how each part worked,” said Sergeant Kline.

A veteran preparer, Staff Sgt. Sara Luna, 912th ARS, developed a solid working knowledge on how to retrieve the largest “legal” return possible.

“I started working at tax center last year. During that time, I worked approximately 236 hours. On my return as a VITA volunteer, I increased my efforts by working approximately 270 hours,” said Luna. “I thoroughly enjoy volunteering at the tax center on base each year. I have gained an immense amount of knowledge regarding the rules involved with the Internal Revenue Service and the filing of federal and a multitude of state returns. It is extremely rewarding when customers express their gratitude for our free filing services, our expertise and professionalism. Tech. Sgt. Crystal Goff and I were usually able to find little-known deductions for military members – saving them even more money on their returns.

If interested in volunteering at the March VITA tax center next year, please call 951-655-3659 or e-mail Marchvita@yahoo.com.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
DoD
Untitled-1

DoD highlights warrior, family care during Warrior Care Month 2014

The Defense Department recently hosted a rehabilitation expo as part of Warrior Care Month as it continues its commitment to supporting wounded, ill and injured troops, their families and caregivers. James Rodriguez, deputy ass...
 
 

Virtual Hope Box mobile app grows in popularity

A free smartphone app that helps people in crisis remember good things in their lives has been downloaded 13,000 times in the past six months, according to data from app stores. That’s good news for experts at the National Center for Telehealth & Technology (T2), which developed the Virtual Hope Box app to help users...
 
 
Courtesy Photo

Tinker epitomized Native American strength, leadership

Courtesy Photo Maj. Gen. Clarence L. Tinker was a natural leader who personally led his Airmen into combat missions during the early days of World War II. He perished, along with his crew, during the battle of Midway. The natio...
 

 
(U.S. Air Force photo/Sarah Corrice)

AF tests first all-electric vehicle fleet in California

(U.S. Air Force photo/Sarah Corrice) Airmen from Los Angeles Air Force Base learn how to use charging equipment for the base’s new electric vehicle fleet during a training demo Oct. 31, 2014, in El Segundo, Calif. When not in...
 
 

AF expands digital library content for Airmen

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas (AFNS) — Airmen at 19 Air Force installations around the world will soon have access to a new 200-title audiobook and eBook digital library, Air Force officials said. The 19 participating installations will help test digital content distribution using the new Air Force eReader AERO; a single portable device developed...
 
 

Air Force officials update AF Instruction 1-1

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — Air Force officials approved Air Force Instruction 1-1, Air Force Standards, Nov. 7, to clarify guidance on Airmen’s religious rights and commanders’ authority and responsibility to protect those rights. The changes come as a result of a Religious Freedom “Focus Day” earlier this year when leaders in the Air Force’s chaplain corps...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin