Thursday, March 1, 2007
On Tuesdays at the library, the Central Vermont Community Action Council provides volunteer preparers who will e-file your federal and state income tax returns at no charge for any family whose total income for 2006 does not exceed $38,000. Hours of service are from 4-8 p.m. in the Frances Holmes Room on the 1st floor. Ask the staff at the front desk for directions. If you want more information on this great program, call the CVCAC office at 479-1053.
Please don't ask the library staff for help with your income tax. We are highly trained professionals, but income tax preparation was not part of that training! However, we'll be glad to direct you to the forms and publications you need.
By the way, if you'd like to get a better handle on your personal finances in the next year, we're displaying books on that subject near the tax forms. You'll find books like, "The Young Couple's Guide to Growing Rich Together", "Personal Finance for Busy People", and "Personal Finance for Dummies".
An editorial in the February 23, 2007 issue of the Montpelier Bridge is critical of city and school spending and the impact on property taxes. As a library patron pointed out to me, there is an unfortunate error in the editorial that results in an overstatement of the rate of increase of school and city budgets.
The editorial states that the city’s budget is increasing at the rate of 2.1% and school budgets are increasing by 4.59%. The author continues, “Now, let’s combine both budgets. If both school and city budgets are approved, we’re looking at a projected 6.6 percent increase.”
This math is incorrect. If the city’s budget increases by 2.1% and the school's by 4.59%, the combined increase is 3.61%, not 6.6%. (The rate of inflation in New England in 2006 also happens to be 3.6 %.)
Montpelier residents have a relatively high property tax burden. But arguments in opposition to library funding, or funding of other community services, should be based on an accurate analysis.