Tax assistance benefit yields big returns

Despite recent manpower and budget cuts, Air Force bases are still offering personal tax assistance programs to their active duty, Guard, Reserve, civilian and retiree populations. (U.S. Air Force graphic/Luke Borland)

Despite recent manpower and budget cuts, Air Force bases are still offering personal tax assistance programs to their active duty, Guard, Reserve, civilian and retiree populations. (U.S. Air Force graphic/Luke Borland)

WASHINGTON (AFNEWS) -- Despite recent manpower and budget cuts, Air Force bases are still offering personal tax assistance programs to their active duty, guard, reserve, civilian, and retiree populations.

Last year, Air Force tax center teams filed more than 132,000 federal returns and 74,000 state returns, and saved members approximately $21.5 million in tax preparation fees. This year's program promises the same high-quality tax service that customers have come to expect, said the Air Force's top lawyer.

"In an era of budget cuts and benefits constraints, our tax preparation service is one benefit that has not eroded," said Maj. Gen. Jack L. Rives, Air Force Judge Advocate General.

The service provides an opportunity for active duty, Guard, Reserve, civilian and retired members to sit down and have a face-to-face session with a trained tax expert. Tax centers are located on base, are open during duty hours and provide service at no cost to customers. According to Internal Revenue Service officials, the Air Force continues to have one of the lowest e-filing error rates among tax preparation services.

For those who do their own taxes, the IRS offers a program called, "Free File," which is available on the IRS homepage at: www.irs.gov. Military OneSource offers free online tax preparation software to active duty, Guard and Reserve members at www.militaryonesource.com.

For more information, contact the local base legal office.