PRESIDIO OF MONTEREY, Calif. - Staff members and volunteers who supported the Presidio of Monterey Tax Center during the 2010 income tax season were honored at an awards ceremony here May 21.

Tax Center personnel are credited with assisting service members, their family members and military retirees in the preparation and filing of some 1,800 state and federal returns from the center's opening Feb. 1 through the April 15 taxpayers' deadline. Tax return preparation and electronic filing of returns were provided free of charge.

Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center Commandant Col. Danial D. Pick and Presidio of Monterey Garrison Commander Col. Darcy A. Brewer attended the afternoon ceremony at Weckerling Center. Also in attendance were representatives of the Internal Revenue Service and the California Tax Franchise Board.

"The Tax Center has been a phenomenal success," said Presidio Staff Judge Advocate Lt. Col. David T. Crawford, whose office sponsors the Tax Center through the Command Tax Program. "We had more returns filed this year than in any previous year. We saved taxpayers over $375,000 in tax-preparation fees."

Pick thanked the Tax Center personnel for providing a vital service. He noted that assistance in preparing tax returns is a stress-reducer for DLIFLC students pursuing rigorous courses of study.

Velia Adayan of the Internal Revenue Service said the Tax Center assisted in the filing of about 1,200 federal returns. She said last year's total was about 875 and the prior year's total was about 400. She said Tax Center services saved taxpayers from $100 to about $400 per tax return.

Ernest Feliciano of the California Franchise Tax Board said military personnel are a unique category of taxpayer and that the Tax Center serves them knowledgeably.

"Most of the preparers out in town do not know the California tax laws when they're dealing with an nonresident return," he said. "So this program that you offer is unique."

Civilians honored with certificates of achievement at the ceremony were Jay McElderry, Richard Seldow, Larissa Sison and Vellis Weathers, and service members honored with certificates of achievement were Petty Officer 1st Class Laura Bernhardt, Sgt. Hawk Blue, Tech. Sgt. Eric Johnson, Spc. Alicia Rodriguez, Tech. Sgt. Angela Santos, Petty Officer 1st Class Sharmon Shaw and Pfc. Whitney Turner.

Younhee Davis received a certificate of appreciation for patriotic service, and Timothy Atkinson and Michelle Ward received achievement medals for civilian service.

Also, Commander's awards for civilian service were awarded to Darwin Strickland and Louis Kolowski, while Army Achievement Medals were awarded to Petty Officer 1st Class Christopher L. Bryant, Spc. Robert David, Petty Officer 1st Class Jason Kugler, Seaman Apprentice Christopher Miller, Master Sgt. Phillip Patterson, Tech. Sgt. Ronnie Shiverdecker and Sgt. Travis Todd.

Additionally, Joint Service Achievement Medals were awarded to Seaman Nicholas Brady, Petty Officer 3rd Class Laura Kembel and Petty Officer 2nd Class Bryan Kurpierz.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16