MCLA, Habitat for Humanity Collaborate to Offer Free Tax Assistance to Those in Need

NORTH ADAMS, MASS.—Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA) and its Department of Business Administration will once again partner with Habitat for Humanity to offer free tax preparation services to residents in need through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program.

Habitat for Humanity administers VITA, a program of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), to assist taxpayers with disabilities or limited English speaking skills, those 60 years of age or older, or households with income below $56,000 a year. MCLA students will be available to complete both basic and advanced returns, including those with itemized deductions.

According to MCLA Professor of Accounting Tara Barboza, an enrolled agent with the United States Department of the Treasury and a Certified Public Accountant (CPA), the students who participate in this program undergo a rigorous training, become IRS certified, and will work under her supervision and that of accountant and fellow MCLA professor Adam Rice.

In addition to meeting a significant need in Northern Berkshire County, Barboza said, “Participating in the VITA program is a unique opportunity that will provide students with valuable, hands-on preparation experience.” They will earn college credit, and accounting students can use this credit toward the requirements for the CPA exam.

Interested individuals should call Habitat for Humanity offices at 413.442.0002 or 413.442.3181 to find out if they qualify, and to schedule an appointment. Walk-ins will also be assisted on a first-come, first-served basis. MCLA students will begin to see clients on Monday, Feb. 10, 2020. Hours will be Mondays from 4-8 p.m., Wednesdays from 4:30-8:30 p.m., and Saturdays from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. in MCLA’s Murdock Hall, located at 375 Church St. in North Adams. The program will continue through April 15, 2020.