Rep. Reed supports free tax filing program

There is still time to file taxes, and potentially even have them filed for free.

U.S. Rep. Tom Reed, R-New York, was at Jamestown Business College on Thursday, speaking about the Free File program. The program is for taxpayers who made $57,000 or less in 2012, allowing them to prepare and file their taxes for free while using name-brand tax preparation software.

“Free File is an excellent example of government and the private sector coming together to help taxpayers who need it most,” Reed said. “This program, which doesn’t cost a dime of taxpayer dollars, takes the confusion out of tax preparation and keeps money in the pockets of working people who need it most. I strongly urge eligible New Yorkers to use this easy and convenient program, and save at tax time.”

According to a press release, New York is one of 22 states plus the District of Columbia that sponsors a state Free File program for both federal and state taxes. The Free File program was created in 2002, and allows eligible taxpayers to choose among many commercial tax preparation software products for free.

Although the deadline to file taxes is April 15, Reed said there is still time to have them completed using the Free File program. The event at Jamestown Business College marked the 22nd stop for the Computer and Communications Industry Association and the Intuit Financial Freedom Foundation.

“Working the schedules and trying to get everyone in the same room at the same time was a logistical issue that had to be addressed,” Reed said. “There’s still plenty of time (to file your taxes). And, I think it also highlights the efficiency of the Free File system. This is an electronic e-file. It opens people up to the Internet, to a resource that they may not have otherwise been familiar with. It really is a much more effective and efficient way, in my opinion, to file your taxes, so that you’re not losing the cost associated with the prepare.”

According to the IRS, 36 million taxpayers have prepared their federal tax returns through Free File since the program began more than 10 years ago.

“You’re getting your refund much quicker than if you file the old-fashioned way,” Reed said. “Rather than costing people money, we wanted to put more money in people’s pockets. And, that’s why we wanted to be here today.”

Information about Free File may be found at www.taxprephelp.org or by visiting www.tax.ny.gov/pit/efile/freefile.htm.