Free tax preparation assistance available in Mount Shasta, Yreka

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald
Volunteer trainer Lucille Cook, right, during a tax preparation training session in JEDI's computer lab in Mount Shasta that was attended by, counter-clockwise from top, Bruce Clark, Shirley Flatt, Betsy Emry, Joan Klint, Frank LaSalvia.  Submitted

Jefferson Economic Development Institute has announced the opening of the VITA/TCE tax assistance service at the JEDI office, 205 Chestnut Street in Mount Shasta.

VITA offers free tax return preparation to eligible taxpayers who generally earn $54,000 or less and have basic returns. TCE is mainly for people age 60 or older but offers service to all taxpayers.

The TCE program focuses on tax issues unique to seniors. The JEDI sites offer both IRS programs. Services will be provided in Mount Shasta at the JEDI office and in Yreka at the Senior Center. Times and dates will vary by site.

“Our program is a drop-off model requiring the taxpayer to visit us on two consecutive Fridays to complete and file their returns,” said VITA Site Coordinator Paj Kane.

In Mount Shasta, from 1 to 4 p.m. on Fridays, taxpayers will drop-off their necessary tax documents. Taxpayers should bring identification including proof of Social Security number and will participate in an interview with a certified VITA volunteer.

The following Friday, from 9 a.m. to noon, taxpayers will return to review and approve their completed returns. All filers will need to be present to sign the return before it will be e-filed.

In Yreka, the service will be provided at the Senior Center at 810 N. Oregon Street on the following dates: Drop off and interviews on Feb. 7, March 7 and April 4. Pick up and Quality Review on Feb. 14, March 14 and April 11. Volunteers will be available from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on these dates.

“We are privileged to offer this service to our community,” said JEDI Executive Director Nancy Swift. “It’s encouraging to see the number of clients grow each year and know that we are helping individuals and families in a tangible way. We serve seniors and wage earners with this program and we know it benefits the community.”

In addition to the free tax preparation through the JEDI VITA/TCE program, taxpayers can receive facilitated self-assistance to file their own returns using My Free Taxes. Call JEDI for correct log-in information or to receive assistance from a volunteer.

This partnership with United Way and H&R Block allows taxpayers with incomes of $66,000 or less to file their federal and state returns for free. Unlike many other free file sites, the state return is absolutely free. Returns can also be filed on mobile devices which should appeal to the millennial market, a JEDI press release states.

View for the latest information about what documents to bring to the site and locations for tax prep throughout this season or call the VITA tax line at 926-6670, extension 15 or email Paj Kane,

JEDI, a nonprofit organization committed to building the regional economy through entrepreneurship, has a mission is to increase the economic wellbeing of people and communities through business development and local wealth creation. JEDI has worked with thousands of people who have started businesses that support families and build community.