Once Again, SPC Operates San Antonio's Most Productive Income Tax Preparation Site

September 25, 2018

Public Information Officer

KEEPING THE (TAX) MONEY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD: IN 2018, SPC’S HEB STUDENT ENGAGEMENT GRANT STUDENTS CONTRIBUTE $7.3 MILLION TO BANK ACCOUNTS OF EAST SIDE SAN ANTONIO RESIDENTS

Student team that gave back and processed $7.3 million in refunds for 4,170 clients in 2018 has returned a combined $24 million to the bank accounts of East Side San Antonio students, residents and small business owners from 2016-2018 alone

St. Philip's College scholarship students have done more than operating San Antonio's most productive income tax preparation site during the 2018 Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) season, and their business unit possesses the numbers to support their high return-on-investment status, a VITA San Antonio coalition authority shared this week.

According to a coalition authority, the student-run site ranked number one in productivity locally, number four in productivity in the region and number 12 in productivity nationally.

While the coalition saw 32,425 total tax returns electronically filed for $48,023,556 total refund dollars and $11.3 million in tax preparation savings, 9,685 tax payers received Earned Income Tax Credit that resulted in those clients receiving $19,761,102. Of that coalition share, St. Philip’s College students completed 4,170 client tax returns for $7,313,607 in total refund dollars and $1,459,500 in tax preparation savings and a $1,331 Earned Income Tax Credit that resulted in $2,896,883 dollars in savings for clients at the college’s site, according to Sheila Anderson-Ruth, senior management analyst in the family assistance division of the City of San Antonio's Department of Human Services.

In 2017 the team of students processed just over $8 million ($8,009,952) in refunds for 4,152 clients from Jan. 20 through April 18, according to an authority at United Way of San Antonio and Bexar County. All 21 VITA sites in San Antonio generated a total of $53,976,073, making San Antonio one of the strongest volunteer programs in the nation. 

For 2018, “St. Philip’s College ranked number one locally, number four in the region and number 12 nationally,” said Ruth.

In a galvanizing example of return-on-investment that the public can contribute funds to support, most of the students on the team were HEB Student Engagement Grant-funded students of business who gave back as members of San Antonio’s VITA operation that is the largest VITA business unit in America run by volunteers, and students funded by grants to the St. Philip’s College Scholarship Fund are leading the way. The college’s HEB Student Engagement Grant-funded students have kept the money in the neighborhood surrounding the college, returning a combined $24 million to the bank accounts of East Side San Antonio students, residents and small business owners from 2016-2018 alone. Established in 1992, the college’s student-and-community-staffed Volunteer Income Tax Assistance and financial literacy program was honored in 2013 by both the Internal Revenue Service and the City of San Antonio for processing a city-best $6.7 million in refunds and ranking 14th in productivity nationwide in 2013, contributing to San Antonio’s status as the nation’s second most productive volunteer income tax preparing city after New York City. Eight St. Philip’s College students processed nearly $7.3 million in refunds for 3,620 local clients through the college’s 2014 income tax preparation service. In 2016 a team of 10 students processed $8.7 million in refunds for a college-record 4,568 clients from Jan. 20 through April 18.

The site staff is informally recruiting students and community volunteers as it forms its 2019 team. For details, contact site leader Kenneth Bankston at 210-486–2122, spc-vita@alamo.edu, or visit the site team in Room 110 of the college’s Bowden Building at 1801 Martin Luther King Drive. For details on contributing to the Student Engagement Grant element of the St. Philip’s College Scholarship Fund, contact Gloria P. Hernandez, college scholarship coordinator, at 210-486-2498, ghernandez@alamo.eduFor details on contributing to the annual Scholarship Golf Tournaments that are the primary source of funding for the St. Philip’s College Scholarship Fund, contact Dr. Sharon Crockett-Ray, the college’s director of institutional advancement, at 210-486-2887, scrockett-bell@alamo.edu.

CAPTIONS:

 

Image 1: In an archival image, the 2018 St. Philip's College tax preparation site team is in a stretch run to complete the season, processing taxes from 2017 for 3,200 clients entering the final 48 hours of the first quarter at their site in Room 110 of the Bowden Building on the college’s campus at 1801 Martin Luther King Drive. Orianna Henry monitors tax preparation productivity at San Antonio's most productive income tax preparation site for 2018. Henry is a St. Philip’s College business administration student and one of the site’s first-year team members. (SPC image by Julysa Sosa)

 

Image 2: In an archival image, the 2018 St. Philip's College tax preparation site team is in a stretch run to complete the season, processing taxes from 2017 for 3,200 clients entering the final 48 hours of the first quarter at their site in Room 110 of the Bowden Building on the college’s campus at 1801 Martin Luther King Drive. As a tax client (center) listens, site leader Ken Bankston (standing at left) clarifies a process for Orianna Henry (far right), a college business administration student and one of the site’s first-year team members. (SPC image by Julysa Sosa)

 

Image 3: In an archival image, St. Philip's College tax preparation site team members attended a February 2017 ceremony on the steps of city hall when the VITA San Antonio coalition announced the 2018 tax season. St. Philip's College scholarship students operated San Antonio's most productive income tax preparation site during the 2017 Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) season and repeated that status in 2018. (Image courtesy City Council District 2 on Facebook)