Given Changes in Wisconsin Law, Urges Residents to Stop in For Help
Today surrounded by citizens using the service, Dane County Executive Joe Parisi spoke with media highlighting free tax preparation help available through the UW-Extension. Due to legislative changes to the Wisconsin Homestead Credit residents will need more documentation to be eligible for the credit. Additionally, with recent changes at the federal level residents are advised to check their federal withholding to ensure it is correct.
“Helping people file for all the credits available can mean a few thousand extra dollars in their pockets,” said Dane County Executive Joe Parisi. “Over the last year we have increased our outreach efforts to help target areas that need it most to bring critical dollars to families who are struggling. I encourage all to stop by the Tax Center to get assistance preparing your taxes. We are here to help.”
Dane County UW-Extension has run the Financial Education Center since 2005 and is a primary partner for the free tax service. The free income tax assistance site, the Richard Dilley Tax Center, prepares between 3,500 and 4,000 tax returns for free every year. During the 2017 tax year, 3,341 people had their taxes prepared free of charge yielding $4.5 million in refunds to taxpayers. The program utilized 146 volunteers in the roles of greeters and tax preparers. Additional asset building services included pre-screening families for Food Share and other state benefits, account opening for the unbanked, budget and credit counseling, and assistance with questions regarding the Affordable Care Act and resources for health insurance enrollment.
In 2017 Dane County launched a new effort to make sure those living in poverty are aware of all available tax benefits for those with lower incomes. Between the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Homestead Tax Credit there are thousands of dollars families will receive if they file. Dane County’s Department for Equity and Inclusion, the Human Services Department and the UW- Extension teamed up to reach out to targeted neighborhoods to try to increase the amount of taxes filed for the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Homestead Tax Credit.
Contact your local Joining Forces for Families office for more information on tax assistance. For more information about tax filing at the Richard Dilley Tax Center or volunteering you can call 608-283-1261.