This spring Solid Ground teamed up with United Way of King County (UWKC) to offer free tax preparation services at our Wallingford site.
A team of 19 Volunteer In-person Tax Assistance (VITA) Preparers participated. Each preparer went through 18 hours of training and an intensive IRS Certification process. There were also five Volunteer and Intake Benefits Specialists (VIBS) who completed a public benefits training in both IRS regulations and public benefits enrollment requirements. These volunteers are a mix of finance professionals from banks and firms, Microsoft and UW students (particularly future CPAs and public health professionals). In total, approximately 400 volunteer hours went into staffing UWKC’s Solid Ground site!
Solid Ground was one of a number of sites around King County. More than 900 volunteers accomplished the following:
- 21,750 tax returns prepared for low- and moderate-income families and individuals — a 9% increase over last year
- $29.1 million in refunds with $9.4 million coming directly from the Earned Income Tax Credits
- 3,035 referrals, a 50% increase over last year, to financial resources such as Basic Food, Health Care, and Utility Assistance that helps keep our program participants financially stable year-round
- 166 clients put over $59,000 into savings bonds to help save for the future — a 42% increase in savings
The Solid Ground Tax Assistance site accomplished the following:
- 192 tax returns prepared, 175 of those for families
- $161,836 in total refunds, with $50,101 from Earned Income Tax Credits
This was the first year that Solid Ground hosted a Tax Assistance site. In addition to benefiting local community members, many of these returns were prepared for Solid Ground program participants!