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Extension office to train tax volunteers

The Pike County Extension Office in Troy has an opportunity waiting for those who have an interest in taking an active role in the community as a tax volunteer.

“Being a tax volunteer is a chance to lend a helping hand,” said Katie Thomas, Pike County Extension coordinator. “Tax volunteers learn to prepare taxes and make a difference at the same time by becoming a volunteer with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program.”

Thomas said volunteers with VITA will receive training to provide free tax help for low to moderate income families who need assistance preparing their tax returns.

“As a volunteer, you will get all the specialized training you need so there is no need to worry if you have limited knowledge of tax law,” she said. “You can also choose a volunteer role that does not require tax law certification.”

Those roles include greeter/screener and tax preparer.

A greeter/screener determines the type of assistance needed and confirms the person has the necessary documents to have their tax returns completed. Tax law certification is not required for this position.

A tax preparer provides free tax return preparation for eligible taxpayers using electronic filing software. Tax law certification is required for this volunteer role.

“Every filing season, tax volunteers make a hug difference in their communities by helping prepare millions of tax returns at thousands of free tax prep sites nationwide,” Thomas said. “More than 3.5 million returns were prepared last year and VITA has the potential to prepare more free returns through its volunteer program.”

Local volunteers will work with the Pike County Extension office.

For additional information, contact Katie Thomas at 334-566-0985 or visit the Pike County Extension office at 306 South Three Notch Street in Troy.