QUESTION: I haven’t seen a list of those organizations offering free tax preparation in your column. Will you be publishing a list soon, or did I miss it?
ANSWER: We no longer have the space to list all the AARP Tax-Aide sites as in the past.
However, you can find the nearest or most convenient site by calling 843-1906, online at www.aarp.org/taxaide or by checking the posting of locations at an AARP Information Center (on Oahu, at 1199 Dillingham Blvd.; open 3-6 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays, and 9 a.m.-noon for Tax-Aide purposes; and from 9:30 a.m.-2 p.m. for nontax matters).
Appointments are required at some locations, so be sure to call first.
AARP says more than 250 trained volunteers will be available at 41 sites throughout the state to help prepare basic federal and state tax returns at no charge for low- and moderate-income people, especially those 60 and older.
More than 10,600 people took advantage of the free service across the state last year, according to AARP.
QUESTION: AARP used to offer seniors help with their taxes in Kapolei. This time without any notice, they canceled it. I was told St. Jude’s was not able to accommodate the volunteers this year, so instead I would have to go to Waipahu. Hundreds of people, the handicapped and aged, make use of this free service, but we can’t drive and it’s easier for us to get someone to drive a short distance. I’m 82 and have to use the Handi-Van. Can’t they find a place in Kapolei?
ANSWER: Unfortunately, there simply are fewer Tax-Aide sites this year — 19 on Oahu, compared with more than 30 in past years.
Not all previous sites are available each year because AARP relies on business and community organizations to provide space for the free tax help, said Bruce Bottorff, AARP Hawaii’s associate state director.
The state Department of Taxation no longer is posting a list of delinquent taxpayers on its website.
It had announced in 2009 that it would post the names of individuals and businesses "as part of the state’s continuing efforts to ensure all Hawaii taxpayers pay their fair share and comply with state tax laws."
We’re told it no longer has the resources to keep updating the list online, but it is available for public inspection at the department at 830 Punchbowl St., a spokeswoman said.
Anyone wishing to see the list should contact the Oahu Collection Branch at 587-1600 to make an appointment. The public may look at the list but cannot make or print copies. When we checked, the list was more than 3,000 pages long.
To the police officer driving a squad car on Wednesday, Feb. 2, who passed us going over 75 mph on the right shoulder of the H-1 freeway town-bound, near Waikele. We thought you were after the really bad guys until we caught up to you at the stoplight. You were laughing with a plainclothes companion. Maybe that is why you didn’t use turn signals on the following left, right and left turns you made? Remember, the public you vowed to serve and protect sees you as a role model. Is this the role you want us to follow? — No Name
We forwarded the license plate number to the Honolulu Police Department. HPD’s Professional Standards Office (formerly called Internal Affairs) will try to identify who was assigned to the vehicle at the time, and the officer’s commander will be notified of the complaint, a spokeswoman said.