Around Williams: Week of Dec. 28, 2011

Become an income tax assistance volunteer

Volunteers are needed to become a United Way Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Volunteer 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Jan. 7 and 14 at the Family Resource Center, 4000 N. Cummings St. in Flagstaff.

Volunteers are needed to serve as tax preparers, screeners, greeters, translators and quality review assistors. No prior tax experience is necessary; training will be given using IRS materials.

Once trained, volunteers will be asked to select four shifts between Jan. 22 and April 15 at the following VITA sites: Coconino High School, Family Resource Center, East Flagstaff Community Library, Kinsey Elementary School and Our Lady of Guadalupe Church. Other locations will be available as well.

For more information or to become a UWNA VITA volunteer, contact Brian Lanari at United Way of Northern Arizona (928) 773-9813 or vita@nazunitedway.org.

Williams schools accepting tax credit donations

Williams Unified School District (WUSD) No. 2, as well as district taxpayers, benefits from the tax credit contributions it receives annually. If you prefer to keep your state income tax dollars at the local level, rather than go to pave a street in Maricopa County, this program is for you.

Anyone with or without children, married or single, is eligible for this unprecedented state tax credit. The $400 maximum state tax credit is available for taxpayers who are married and filing jointly. A husband and wife who file separate returns for a taxable year in which they could have filed a joint return may each claim $100. For a single individual or a head of household, the tax credit is $200.

A state tax credit will allow you to reduce the amount of your tax liability to the state. If you donate the maximum $400, your Arizona income tax bill would be $400 less.

You may donate less than $400 and be eligible to receive the state tax credit in the amount of your donation. The amount you donate (up to $400) will be the amount you may claim as a state tax credit. You may split your $400 donation among more than one public school, but will still qualify for a maximum state credit of $400.

The Arizona Legislature passed a law in 1997 (A.R.S. 43-1089.01) allowing Arizona taxpayers to contribute up to $400 to a public school, and then deduct that entire amount from their state tax bill. A tax credit is a dollar-for-dollar reduction in the actual tax owed. For example, if you owe $800 in state income taxes and you donate $400 to a public school for extracurricular activities, you may subtract the $400 from your tax bill and pay the state just $400. A tax deduction only reduces total taxable income.

A receipt will be provided for tax purposes. Donations must be received by or postmarked no later than Saturday in order to be eligible for the tax credit this calendar year.

Extracurricular activities help children develop qualities such as leadership, team play, and cooperation, as well as provide safe, supervised activities after school hours. Thanks to donors, these programs are available to all children in the WUSD. Donation forms are available at the district office, at both school offices, and on the district's website at www.wusd2.org. Once you have the donation form, select the extracurricular program of your choice. Call (928) 635-4473 for more information.

New Year's Eve dance Saturday

A New Year's Eve dance for ages 12-20 will be held 9 p.m.-12:30 a.m. Saturday at the Williams Recreation Center, 301 W. Railroad Ave.

Enjoy music, food, raffle prizes and fun. Donations are requested to help with future youth dances.

The event is sponsored by the city of Williams, Williams Multi-Cultural Alliance and the WUSD CLC Haven.

Local churches plan New Year's Eve party

A non-alcohol New Year's Eve party for ages 14 and up is planned for 7 p.m.-12:30 a.m. Saturday at Family Harvest Church, 220 S. Seventh St.

Enjoy live country music and dancing, small group table games and hourly door prizes 8-11 p.m. Prizes include donations from Bearizona, Grand Canyon Railway, Safeway, Perkins Firewood and more. Chili dogs with all the fixings, appetizers and plenty of desserts will be available along with coffee, tea, cocoa and more.

A midnight celebration to welcome in the New Year will be followed by the sanctuary being open after midnight for prayer.

This gift is sponsored by Williams area churches including Calvary Chapel, First Baptist, Family Harvest and Community United Methodist Church.

Tip a Cop Jan. 9

Officers from the Coconino County Sheriff's Office and Flagstaff Police Department will be working for tips 4:30-9 p.m. Jan. 9 at Taverna Greek Grill, 420 S. Woodland Village Blvd., Flagstaff.

Proceeds from Tip a Cop will benefit Special Olympics Arizona. All monies earned will go to Northern Arizona Law Enforcement for Special Olympics. In addition, Taverna Greek Grill has generously offered to donate to Special Olympics 15 percent of all sales for the entire day.

Special Olympics of Arizona provides year-round sports training and competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for individuals with intellectual disabilities and cause-related disabilities giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness. Special Olympics Arizona serves more than 9,100 athletes.

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