January 28, 2005

Bronze Triangle CDC Event to Help Region Capture $50 Million in Unclaimed Earned Income Tax Credits

On January 29 from 12pm – 2pm, the Bronze Triangle Community Development Corporation, will officially kick off its Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program to help qualify community residents for the federal Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).

“The potential cumulative economic impact to the region is huge,” said Gale Walker, the Bronze Triangle CDC’s President. “But the impact the EITC program can have on individual families is what motivates our staff and our volunteers. Across the country, the EITC program has actually lifted millions of children out of poverty, more than any other federal aid program.”

The Bronze Triangle VITA site already is signing up residents who want assistance with tax preparation. Bronze Triangle VITA sites will be located at 2953 Imperial Avenue and will operate on Tuesday from 4PM to 8PM , Wednesday from 10AM to 5PM and Saturdays from 9AM to 5PM. Families who live in the Bronze Triangle and are interested in learning more about EITC can get more information by phoning 619.233-1385.

The EITC often is not well known among the working poor, even though it was enacted by Congress in 1975 as a refundable income tax credit designed to make work pay for low-income families. Originally proposed in response to high unemployment in the mid-70s and the burden that social security taxes imposed on low-wage workers, substantial EITC increases were approved by Congress several times during the late 1980s and early 1990s.

A study by the Brookings Institution issued in June 2001 shows that more than 19 million families claim more than $30 billion in EITCs – an average of $1,567 per family, making the EITC the largest federal aid program targeted to the working poor. In the San Diego region, 174,000 residents earned more than $253 million in federal EITC refunds in 1997. More than $113 million of the total was provided to residents of the city of San Diego.

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