Free Tax Help - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

01/24/05

Free Tax Help

William Baker is a regular volunteer at the St. Mary's Center in Savannah, helping with adult education. But on Saturday mornings he is wearing a different hat. For the next few months, he will be a very popular guy.

"We are doing taxes for free," he said.

St. Mary's Center is one of ten places offering this free service in Savannah to people who have lower incomes.

"The extra 200 to 400 dollars they pay to get the taxes prepared, that's just extra money in their pockets and we're doing the same thing regular preparers do," said Baker.

It is slow at the center now, but not for long. After all, it's only January. "It gets pretty busy as the time gets closer," said Heather Richmond, who is also a volunteer.

Like most volunteers, Richmond isn't an accountant and doesn't necessarily love numbers, but she doesn't mind taking time out to help people. "Each year you, have to take a course. It's just computer training and they teach you everything."

Last year, the St. Mary's Center alone helped 133 people. This year the trend is just starting. They tell us so far, they've had eight people come in for about $35,000 or $40,000 in refunds.

They are waiting to help more people who need it. They will be there until just before your taxes are due.

If you'd like more information on the service, call 447.5577.

Reported by: Kim Angelastro, kangelastro@wtoc.com

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