Clayton State University’s long-running and most successful community outreach program -- VITA -- has been awarded a grant from the Atlanta Prosperity Campaign (APC).
The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, hosted by the University’s School of Business, recently completed its 21st consecutive year of providing free tax support for certain eligible taxpayers. VITA is a national program that has been in existence for 37 years, providing unpaid volunteers with extensive IRS training and testing that helps ensure that taxpayers will have their tax returns filled out accurately and timely and receive qualifying tax credits.
During this past tax season, Clayton State VITA volunteers completed 179 federal returns and 144 state returns over six Saturdays. A total of 13 Clayton State accounting students prepared returns, and 10 other School of Business students served as greeters. In all, they assisted taxpayers in recovering $274,844 in refunds. Due to their efforts, the Clayton State program has just received a grant from APC in the amount of $1,969.
The Atlanta Prosperity Campaign is an initiative of the Atlanta Community Food Bank which was created to assist working families and individuals with financial matters by alerting them to money-saving programs and existing benefits. One of its projects is to work with the IRS on the VITA program, and, as a result, APC currently oversees all the VITA locations in the metro Atlanta area. This year APC oversaw 45 sites, and more than 600 volunteers. This is the second year for the APC grant, and the awards are based on the number of returns prepared. The grant, which Clayton State Associate Professor of Business Law, Interim Assistant Dean, and Director of the MBA program Dr. Judith Stilz Ogden, applied for, is intended to reimburse sites for their expenditures, such as supplies.