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July 7, 08

NEWS / IRS Seeking Applications for New VITA Grant


WASHINGTON ó The Internal Revenue Service is now accepting applications for the first-ever Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) matching grant program. The application period for 2009 is from July 1 through Sept. 2, 2008.

The Community VITA grant program is the first of its kind at the IRS. In December 2007, Congress appropriated funds to the IRS to establish and administer a one-year matching grant program in consultation with the Taxpayer Advocate Service.

The VITA program offers free tax help for low-to-moderate income individuals for tax return preparation.

Under the grant program, the IRS will award matching grants to extend services to underserved populations and hard-to-reach areas, both urban and non-urban. The grants will also be used to increase the capacity to file returns electronically and enhance training of volunteers at VITA sites.

The establishment of the grant will enable the IRS to offer funding to assist organizations in sustaining the VITA program.

Who Can Apply

Applicants must be any one of the following:

*
A private or public non-profit organization qualifying for tax exemption under IRC 501.
*
A state or local government agency.
*
A regional, statewide or local coalition with one lead organization that meets one of the eligibility criteria stated above.

Applicants must also provide matching funds on a dollar-for-dollar basis. Matching funds consist of cash, computer hardware and software and third-party, in-kind contributions. Funding from other federal grants cannot be counted as matching funds.

How to Apply

The period for accepting applications is July 1 through Sept. 2, 2008. Interested applicants may apply at Grants.gov. Applicants can also mail a completed application to:

IRS-SPEC
Grant Program Office
401 West Peachtree Street, NW
Stop 420-D
Atlanta, GA 30308

All applications must be received in the Grant Program Office by 4:00 p.m. EST on Sept. 2, 2008. Copies of Publication 4671, VITA Grant Program Overview and Application Package, are available on this Web site. More information, including Frequently Asked Questions, can be found on the Partner and Volunteer Resource Center page on this Web site.

Questions about the VITA Grant program or the application process should be e-mailed to the Grant Program Office or mailed to the Grant Program Office at the address listed above.

 




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