Ogden, Utah, April 4, 2012
Bank of Utah volunteers have been providing free income tax preparation services and advice for low-income families through
Ogden's non-profit Cottages of Hope, and the effort has saved local families a significant amount on their tax returns.
Cottages of Hope reported that bank employees and other volunteers have completed nearly 1,000 tax returns since January 21, 2012
and generated $1,795,854 in total tax refunds, thus far this season. Cottages of Hope estimates the average refund amount per patron is $1,759.
"Our team of bank volunteers, and others from the community have logged 865 total volunteer hours at Cottages of Hope to support the effort,"
said Scott H. Parkinson, Bank of Utah's senior vice president of marketing and communication. "Our local community bank alone has provided a
pproximately 212 hours or 25 percent of the total volunteer hours thus far this year screening individuals and preparing taxes.
"We're proud to see the impact that our bank volunteers have made in the community to this point," said Parkinson. "We estimate that our
group alone has generated $486,116 in tax refunds for Cottage of Hope patrons."
"We still have another couple of weeks that we will be helping individuals with their 2011 tax needs," noted Jeremy Botelho, executive
director for Cottages of Hope. "And, we're also helping individuals file past year returns. In regards to that, it's important to remember
that those hoping to claim 2008 tax refund money cannot do so after April 17 of this year."
Bank of Utah volunteers also teach financial literacy classes on an on-going basis at Cottages of Hope. The local nonprofit agency focuses
on helping Ogden residents achieve greater financial stability, and serves as a "one-stop" resource and referral center.
Cottages of Hope Co-director and CFO Chris Swaner added, "We're very grateful to Bank of Utah and our other volunteers for helping us provide
this service in the community. And, we encourage families who are struggling financially to contact us immediately and set up appointments if
they need help with their tax returns."
The current schedule for tax return appointments is: Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 5 to 8 pm and Saturdays from 10 am to 1 pm. The public may
call 2-1-1 to schedule a tax appointment. Cottages of Hope, Inc. is located at 2724 South Washington, Ogden, Utah. Call (801)393-4011, e-mail
firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.cottagesofhope.com for more information.