Budish and EITC Coalition Announce Record Breaking 2015 Tax Program Results

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Donisha Greene: (216) 443-7075 or dgreene@cuyahogacounty.us

Income Tax services for low to middle-income families

Cleveland, OH – Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish and the Enterprise-led Cuyahoga Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) Coalition released results for the 2015 free tax preparation services as part of the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program.

The year’s program brought in 13,234 tax returns totaling $18,200,216 in refunds to the community. That is an increase of $4M from last year’s results. Earned Income Tax Credit customers claimed a total of $6,799,196 in EITC refunds for 4,360 program users.

“The good news for working families all over Cuyahoga County was that they received refunds they may not have secured without this program.” said County Executive Budish. “Our partnership with the EITC Coalition means thousands of families who worked hard and filed their taxes on time have successfully claimed the federal benefits they’ve earned.”

New and existing strategic partnerships within the community aided and gained the Coalition much success. A new tax site hosted by Burten, Bell, Carr Development Inc., increased capacity in the Central and Kinsman Neighborhoods; while continued partnerships with Famicos Foundation and Cleveland Housing Network, remained amongst the largest VITA sites in the state of Ohio.

“The Enterprise-led Cuyahoga EITC Coalition recognizes that volunteers drive our success. Without hundreds of volunteers, giving thousands of hours the Coalition would not be able to bring free tax preparation to the community on such a large scale,” said Mark McDermott, Enterprise Vice President and Ohio market Leader. “This year, the Coalition had 48% of its volunteers returning for at least their second time and we’re grateful to have that kind of support.”

Taxpayers who earned less than $52,427 annually and were filing a simple return were eligible to participate.

Tax returns were prepared and filed by IRS-certified tax preparation volunteers, that also notified taxpayers if they qualify for certain federal tax benefits, including the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Child Tax Credit.