Initiative Recognized by U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation as Best Economic Empowerment Program
New Orleans, La. – Entergy Corporation was recognized by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation for helping low-income customers along the path to economic self-sufficiency through the company’s Super Tax Day program. The program has resulted in $100 million in federal Earned Income Tax Credits returned to approximately 58,000 customers since 2009.
The initiative was named as this year’s Best Economic Empowerment program. The award honors American businesses for their strategic and sustained positive impact on people, communities, the environment and society. In 2008, the company was named Overall Corporate Citizen of the Year by the foundation.
“The winners of the 2014 Citizens Awards illustrate how every day businesses serve as a powerful force for good,” U.S. Chamber Foundation President John McKernan said.
Each year, an estimated $2.5 billion in EITC goes unclaimed by qualifying workers in the four states served by Entergy – Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas.
Entergy partners with local nonprofit organizations to raise awareness of EITC and support Volunteer Income Tax Assistance sites in local communities. Volunteers help residents earning $52,000 or less determine if they qualify for the credit. Volunteers also assist customers in filing tax returns to ensure qualifying families receive the benefits they have earned. Refunds can be as much as $6,000 per household.
In addition to helping individual customers, the estimated economic impact of the Super Tax Day program is more than $250 million.
“We know that helping our customers keep more of what they’ve earned can make a real difference in their lives,” said Patty Riddlebarger, director of corporate social responsibility for Entergy. “Recipients use the extra dollars to further their educations, initiate home ownership and also meet basic needs like medicine, groceries and utility bills.”
Entergy estimates approximately 25 percent of customers live in poverty. The Brookings Institution recognizes EITC as the most effective poverty reduction program in the nation, lifting some six million people out of poverty annually. The majority of recipients who receive EITC only qualify for one to two years.
“Entergy’s work to raise awareness of the tax credits and help customers secure these extra dollars helps thousands of working families,” Riddlebarger said.
The initiative supports Entergy's commitment to improving its communities and the lives of its customers.
Entergy Corporation is 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 more than 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 $11 billion and approximately 14,000 employees.