Serving Monroe, Owen, and Greene Counties

Over $2.9 Million in Tax Refunds to Local Families


August 2018 - Local residents in Monroe, Owen, and Greene counties who participated in the 2018 Free Community Tax Service program filed 2,824 tax returns at no charge and received more than $2.9 million in federal and state tax refunds and credits -- a 70% increase over last year. The Free Community Tax Service, a partnership between United Way of Monroe County and the Financial Stability Alliance of South Central Indiana, provides free tax preparation and electronic filing of federal and Indiana tax returns for low- and moderate-income households.

Free one-on-one tax preparation was provided by 135 IRS-certified volunteers at 10 sites -- including a new full-service Spanish language site -- saving clients up to $1,290,568 in tax preparation fees. Community partners AARP Tax Counseling for the Elderly (AARP/TCE) recruited volunteers and managed the Twin Lakes Recreation Center and the Monroe County Public Library sites. Additionally, free tax filing was available online at

Volunteers also helped those eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit file and receive that credit, worth up to $6,269. Those who received refunds reported using them for food, clothing, bills, rent, and to put toward savings.

"United Way is honored to be entrusted with the vital task of filing tax returns for so many local residents," says Community Initiatives Director, Amy Leyenbeck. "We are grateful to the talented, dedicated and detail-oriented volunteers who make these results possible year after year. We are already working on how to improve the service for 2019, and looking for more tax heroes to join our ranks!"

Volunteers came from all walks of life including students from the Indiana University Kelley School of Business and Maurer School of Law, retired financial professionals, and community volunteers who see this as a positive way of giving back where they work and live. These individuals promoted, managed, and operated free tax sites and served as IRS-certified volunteer tax preparers, quality reviewers, and site coordinators. Those interested in volunteering should contact Amy Leyenbeck at amy (at)

This program is made possible through grant funding from the IRS, H&R Block, and United Way Worldwide.

Along with the United Way of Monroe County and the Financial Stability Alliance for South Central Indiana, partners of the Free Community Tax Service include 2-1-1, AARP, Broadview Learning Center, Chinese Business Association, City of Bloomington, Ellettsville Branch Library, Indiana Legal Services, Indiana University Maurer School of Law, Internal Revenue Service, Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington, Monroe County Public Library, Owen County Public Library, South Central Community Action Program, Stone Belt, Twin Lakes Recreation Center, WorkOne Bloomington, and community volunteers.

Do you want to strengthen earnings in our community?

Please consider donating to the United Way Earnings Priority Fund. This fund helps hard working individuals and families get ahead by increasing their job skills and income potential, providing financial education, and building economic stability and independence.

Want to learn more about the other building blocks for a good life? Visit Education and Essentials to see how we are making an impact.


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