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Waubonsee VITA Program Offers Free Tax Help

Volunteers with Waubonsee Community College’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program will offer free tax help again this season in downtown Aurora.

Beginning Jan. 23, a team of volunteers associated with Waubonsee will again partner with the Center for Economic Progress to sponsor the free income tax return preparation assistance sessions for eligible members of the community. The sessions will take place from Jan. 23 - April 16 on Wednesdays from 5:30 p.m. - 8 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. at Waubonsee's downtown Aurora Campus, 18 S. River Street.

The site will be closed during spring break on March 16, and March 19.

At these sessions, volunteers from Waubonsee and the Center for Economic Progress will help prepare and electronically file income tax returns, including those requiring the 1040 Schedule C used by small businesses and the self-employed.

Those eligible for the program include families with annual incomes of $50,000 or less, and individuals with annual incomes less than $25,000. Those seeking tax return preparation assistance at the VITA sessions should bring a copy of last year's tax return, if they have one; Forms W-2 and 1099 from all employment in 2015; Social Security cards for all family members; bank account and routing number to direct deposit the refund; property tax bill; amount spent on college expenses; proof of health insurance coverage; and a photo ID.

The free income tax return preparation is done on a first-come, first-served basis, and the site closes when capacity is reached. Organizers advise that for shorter wait times, plan to visit in March. Clients should allow for about two hours or more for tax preparation.

The program was launched locally in 2005 by Waubonsee accounting faculty members. Since then, the work of 551 volunteers over 11 years has resulted in more than $13 million returned to the community, and the program has served 7,267 clients who have filed a total of 13,570 federal and state returns.

“Our volunteers not only support district residents, but do so in a way that strengthens goodwill throughout the community,” said Ne’Keisha Stepney, Assistant Dean for Business and Career Technologies.

Last season, the program served nearly 1,030 low-to moderate-income families and individuals, bringing $2 million in income tax refunds back to the local economy.  

For more information, contact Waubonsee Community College at (630) 466-7900, ext. 2992, email, or visit the Center for Economic Progress website at