Generally Speaking: Bay Ridge AARP announces free tax preparation service

February 5, 2015 Theodore W. General
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Bay Ridge AARP Secretary Ann Panzarino announced that, once again, the national AARP Foundation is offering free preparation of federal and state income tax forms.

AARP trained and IRS certified tax counselors will be available from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Mondays (except Presidents’ Day, February 16) through April 13, in the Rectory meeting room of St. Patrick’s Church, 9511 Fourth Avenue; Phone: 718-238-2600.

The free service is available to low to moderate income taxpayers with special attention to those 60 and over. Even though the site is on the grounds of a local house of worship, all are welcome, and you don’t have to be an AARP member to use the service. Be sure to bring a copy of your 2013 tax returns, plus W-2 and 1099 forms. Walk-ins are permitted.

This year, St. Patrick’s is the only site in Southwest Brooklyn hosting the free AARP tax service. The AARP Foundation Tax-aid program is the largest free, volunteer-run tax assistance and preparation service in the nation. For other sites beyond Southwest Brooklyn, call 888-227-7669.

The Resource Training and Counseling Center in cooperation with City Council Deputy Leader Vinnie Gentile conducted a training seminar at McKinley Junior High School, 7301 Fort Hamilton Parkway, on Opioid overdose and the steps needed to render assistance.

RTC’s director of operations Mike Buckley conducted the training. Members of CERT1NYC covering Community Boards 10 and 11, attended the course, receiving certificates from RTC President Donna Mae DePola attesting to their successful training, and NARCAN kits from Council Member Gentile to help bring relief to a drug abuser that has OD’ed.

Just prior to the Super Bowl telecast, we attended a lively concert by the Regina Opera Company in the school auditorium of the Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Academy, 59th Street and Sixth Avenue.

The program featured a variety of popular Broadway show tunes from award-winning musicals like “Phantom of the Opera,” “West Side Story,” “Sweeney Todd,” “Funny Girl,” “The Man of La Mancha,” “Beauty and the Beast,” Jekyll and Hyde,” “Les Miserables,” “Porgy and Bess” and “South Pacific.”

Performing artists included Sopranos Elana Gleason, Jessica French and Michelle Pretto; Tenor Dan Kerr and Baritone Nicholas Connolly. The musical ensemble was Pianist Victoria Ulanovskaya and Flutist Richard Paratley. To us, the afternoon’s show-stopper was Kerr’s rendition of “Bring Him Home,” from “Les Miz.”

We have said it before in this space, how you can experience such really great local talent by area performing arts groups at a nominal price without the expensive trip to Manhattan venues.

In commemoration of the Chinese New Year, the next monthly meeting of the Community Education Council for School District 20, on February 11, 7 p.m. to be held at Public School 160, 5105 Fort Hamilton Parkway, will include pre-celebratory performances heralding the “Year of the Sheep.” The Lunar New Year 4712 actually starts on February 19. CEC20 is headed by Laurie Windsor, who also serves on Community Board 11.

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