February 2, 2006
Posted online February 7, 2005
Taxes prepared for free; don't lose out
on Earned Income Tax Credit
State of Illinois
MARION – Thursday, Lt. Governor Pat Quinn promoted the
Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), a refundable tax credit
providing relief to working poor families and individuals. Quinn
also announced the locations of free Southern Illinois tax
preparation sites funded by the Illinois Department of Human
Services and the Lt. Governor's office.
"W-2 forms are arriving in the mail alongside heating
and holiday bills," Quinn said. "We want to help
struggling families cover their mounting winter costs and the
Earned Income Tax Credit is a way to put money back in the
pockets of those who need it most."
The average Illinois family filing for EITC makes less than
$14,000 annually and EITC refunds average $1,800. According to
the Brookings Institution, more than 840,000 low-income workers
claim the EITC in Illinois. And many more are eligible.
Recent statistics show that one of every five Illinois
families fails to take advantage of the tax credit. In 2005,
148,000 Illinois households eligible for the program did not
apply. To reduce the large number of Illinois citizens missing
out on the savings, Quinn continues to initiate efforts to fund
free tax preparation services in various locations throughout the
Lt. Governor Quinn made the announcement outside
Marion's Man-Tra-Con Corp. – an ongoing tax
preparation site providing free tax services to eligible
taxpayers. Services are available Monday and Wednesday evenings,
5:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. and Saturdays, 10:00 a.m. –
Quinn's office will provide funding for three one-day
tax preparation centers at the following locations:
KARNAK: Sunday February 5, 2006 11:00 a.m. – 5:00
Shawnee Development Council: 530 W. Washington St.
SPARTA: Sunday February 12, 2006 10:00 a.m. – 5:00
Sparta Public Library: 211 W. Broadway St.
CARMI: Sunday February 4, 2006 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Southeastern Illinois College: 1700 College Ave.
All clients who arrive during the scheduled time will be
served free of charge.
"The Earned Income Tax Credit is the best pro-job,
pro-family and anti-poverty tax relief ever devised, and
it's important that every eligible Illinois wage earner
knows about this tax relief," Quinn said. "This
credit gives a much-needed tax relief to those who deserve it
most, but you must apply for it," Quinn said, adding that
many families use the Earned Income Tax Credit to pay utility
bills, repair or buy cars, and keep family finances afloat.
For a complete list of all locations offering free tax
assistance, visit the Lt. Governor's website at www.LtGovernor.il.gov.