Local advocates and volunteers help residents claim Earned Income Tax Credit
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- At Super Tax Day on Feb. 6, at the Arkansas State Fairgrounds Arts and Crafts Building in Little Rock and at local Volunteer Income Tax Assistance sites, Entergy Arkansas is sponsoring free tax preparation for working families provided by local volunteers and community advocates. Volunteers certified by the Internal Revenue Service help local residents determine if they qualify for the federal Earned Income Tax Credit program and other refunds and credits due.
EITC benefits families or individuals earning up to $54,000 in 2015. Based on income and the number of children in the household, benefits can amount up to $6,200. The IRS reports that 20 percent of EITC funds are unclaimed each year simply because people don't know they are available.
Entergy's support to Super Tax Days and VITA in the four states its utilities serve -- Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas -- has resulted in approximately 74,000 customers receiving $126 million through the EITC program since 2011. In Arkansas more than 8,800 residents have received $12,600,000 since Entergy Arkansas launched the program by partnering with local advocates.
EITC is regarded as one of the nation's most effective anti-poverty programs, lifting an estimated nine million people out of poverty in 2013, including five million children. New research suggests that income from tax credits benefits children over their lifetimes. The EITC is now linked with more prenatal care, less maternal stress and better infant health as well as improved test scores and higher high-school graduation and college attendance rates.
Entergy's Super Tax Day initiative has resulted in an estimated $189 million in economic benefits to the communities served by Entergy, based on an economic multiplier of 1.5 determined by the Brookings Institution. This impact has earned the company recognition by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation for the nation's best economic empowerment program.
"It's clear from the numbers and the research that helping our customers apply for and receive these available tax credits makes a significant economic impact, both for the customer and the local community," said Tom Kennedy, vice president for public affairs at Entergy Arkansas, Inc. "Entergy's Super Tax Day events are one of the many ways we power life in our communities."
Residents can also file using the website MyFreeTaxes.com. Learn more about Entergy's support to Super Tax Days at entergy.com/eitc.
Entergy Arkansas provides electricity to approximately 700,000 customers in 63 counties. Entergy Arkansas is a subsidiary of Entergy Corporation, an integrated energy company engaged primarily in electric power production and retail distribution operations. Entergy owns and operates power plants with approximately 30,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity, including nearly 10,000 megawatts of nuclear power, making it one of the nation's leading nuclear generators. Entergy delivers electricity to 2.8 million utility customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. Entergy has annual revenues of more than $12 billion and approximately 13,000 employees.