Hertzberg Announces Expanded Partnership, Encourages City of San Fernando Residents to Sign Up for Tax Savings
The federal Earned Income Tax Credit can save low-income families up to $6,269 on their tax returns
VAN NUYS – In a quest to improve the finances of thousands of struggling families and stimulate economic development in the city of San Fernando, Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, is announcing a new partnership to encourage all low-income residents to take advantage of free state and federal tax preparation services offered by accounting students from California State University, Northridge (CSUN).
Thanks to Hertzberg and in collaboration with Citi Community Development, CSUN’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Clinic has expanded its services this year. In 2016, VITA helped 171 families in the City of San Fernando receive a federal Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), providing them with an average refund of $1,210.
“It doesn’t take much to earn your family a few extra hundred dollars,” Herzberg said. “Get some free assistance with your taxes so you can qualify for the savings you deserve.”
Hertzberg has made it his personal goal to dramatically increase the number of eligible San Fernando families receiving EITC. The tax credit push is part of Hertzberg’s ongoing initiative to spark economic and community development throughout the city of San Fernando.
“According to FamilyAssetsCount.org, 65 percent of households in the City of San Fernando lack sufficient savings to sustain three months at the poverty level in the event of a disruption to income,” said Bob Annibale, Global Director of Citi Community Development and Inclusive Finance. “Expanding access to free tax preparation services and the Earned Income Tax Credit can enable eligible families across San Fernando to get the most out of their refund and empower them to build assets and establish long-term financial resilience.”
CSUN’s VITA Clinic is now open to assist low-income taxpayers through April 15 at three new locations in the City of San Fernando: the San Fernando Library, Las Palmas Park and Morningside Elementary School. In addition, appointments are available on the CSUN campus.
“VITA aims to provide an excellent quality, cost-free tax preparation service for the low-income community in the City of San Fernando and beyond, as well as an excellent experiential learning opportunity for undergraduate and graduate students here at CSUN,” said accounting professor Rafi Efrat, director of the CSUN VITA Clinic and the university’s Bookstein Chair in Taxation. “We are pleased to be supported by Citigroup and the office of Sen. Robert Hertzberg to reach low-income residents in the City of San Fernando.”
The clinics accept walk-ins, but taxpayers are encouraged to make appointments through VITA’s website (vita.csun.edu) or by calling (818) 677-3600. For more information about VITA or Hertzberg’s other efforts to support San Fernando, contact the senator’s district office at (818) 901-5588.
Bob Hertzberg, chair of the Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Water, represents nearly 1 million San Fernando Valley residents of Senate District 18, which includes part of Burbank and the following communities in Los Angeles: Arleta, Granada Hills, Hansen Dam, Lake View Terrace, Mission Hills, North Hills, North Hollywood, part of Northridge, Pacoima, Panorama City, Sherman Oaks, Studio City, part of Sun Valley, Sylmar, Toluca Lake, Valley Glen, Valley Village, Van Nuys, the City of San Fernando and Universal City. See a district map at http://sd18.senate.ca.gov/district. After serving in the Assembly from 1996-2002, including two years as Speaker, Hertzberg invested in solar, wind and electric-car projects; and worked for structural changes in government through the Think Long Committee of California. Learn more at www.senate.ca.gov/hertzberg.
MEDIA CONTACT: Andrew LaMar
Senator Robert M. Hertzberg
Capitol Building, Room 4038
Sacramento, CA 95814