California Financial Literacy Month Blog http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov April is Financial Literacy Month! Financial education news, programs & services, events, resources & more... Fri, 05 Feb 2016 19:13:55 +0000 en-US hourly 1 File for Free – Free Tax Prep Finder (interactive map) http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/2016/02/05/file-for-free-free-tax-prep-finder-interactive-map/ Fri, 05 Feb 2016 19:13:55 +0000 http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/?p=5309 Free Tax Prep Finder

Enter your city, ZIP code or address below to find free tax prep locations near you. Once you find a convenient location, give them a call to set up an appointment or ask questions.

Helpful Materials

Check out our range of printable materials to help you understand the EITC to get the most money back this . . . → Read More: File for Free – Free Tax Prep Finder (interactive map)]]> Free Tax Prep Finder

Enter your city, ZIP code or address below to find free tax prep locations near you. Once you find a convenient location, give them a call to set up an appointment or ask questions.

Helpful Materials

Go to the interactive map at http://caleitc4me.org/get-it/, enter a city, zipcode, or address to search.

Want to file your taxes for free online from the comfort of your own home?

Check out CalFile and other options by clicking here.

Ready to file?

Collect the documents you will need to file your taxes. Click here to see the full list.

Don’t miss Tax Day!
File your tax returns on or before April 18, 2016.

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Are You Eligible for the Federal EITC? http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/2016/02/05/are-you-eligible-for-the-federal-eitc/ Fri, 05 Feb 2016 19:07:26 +0000 http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/?p=5305 Are You Eligible for the Federal EITC?

Follow the chart attached  to see if you are eligible for the  federal Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) when ling as Single.

. . . → Read More: Are You Eligible for the Federal EITC?]]> Are You Eligible for the Federal EITC?

Follow the chart attached  to see if you are eligible for the  federal Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) when ling as Single.

Federal_EITC_Eligibility_Infographic

 

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EITC Awareness Day was January 29, 2016! http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/2016/02/05/eitc-awareness-day-january-29-2016-10th-anniversary/ Fri, 05 Feb 2016 19:03:47 +0000 http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/?p=5300 It’s not too late to get involved!

See how below…

Each year, IRS joins partners nationwide to launch the EITC Awareness Day outreach campaign to ensure that millions of low-and moderate-income workers get the credit they deserve and get it right. The IRS invites community organizations, elected . . . → Read More: EITC Awareness Day was January 29, 2016!]]> EITC Awareness Day – 10th Anniversary

EITC Awareness Day was January 29, 2016!

It’s not too late to get involved!

See how below…

Each year, IRS joins partners nationwide to launch the EITC Awareness Day outreach campaign to ensure that millions of low-and moderate-income workers get the credit they deserve and get it right. The IRS invites community organizations, elected officials, state and local governments, schools, employers, and other interested parties to join a national grassroots effort on EITC Awareness Day to spotlight EITC.

EITC Awareness Day seeks to generate extensive news media coverage on a specific day (or days in close proximity) to increase awareness among potentially eligible taxpayers at the time most are filing their federal income tax returns. The event is a joint venture between IRS and its many partners and stakeholders. Intensive media coverage helps us reach the broadest possible range of eligible taxpayers, including the underserved populations and the newly eligible taxpayers.

This year marks the 10th anniversary of EITC Awareness Day and, in along with promoting EITC; the IRS will  provide information on other refundable tax credits that taxpayers may be eligible to receive. This includes the Premium Tax Credit, American Opportunity Tax Credit, and the Child Tax Credit.

IRS estimates four of five eligible taxpayers claim and get this important credit.  Best of all, EITC is a financial boost for working people and your local economy. EITC Awareness Day is January 29, 2016.  Join our outreach efforts and watch here for more information on the 2016 campaign and help promote over 40 years of EITC Awareness.

Reaching Out!

We need your help to capture the attention of those eligible for EITC and motivate them to explore whether they qualify. We also want to lead them to no-cost options for tax return help–volunteer tax assistance and Free File, direct them to additional credits they are entitled to, and make sure they get it right.

Join us in getting the word out to those who qualify but don’t file a tax return or miss the credits they deserve. Explore our Partner’s Outreach Toolkit for ideas and the products you need to get the word out. Or, see our Quick EITC Outreach kit highlighting some ideas and our key products.

There are millions of workers who miss out on the benefits of EITC each year either because they are newly qualified or don’t otherwise need to file. That is why this day is so important in reaching the one in five eligible workers who could but do not claim the credit.

Many tools and resources are available to support you:

More Resources:

See our Basic Marketing Materials for more products and ideas.–news releases, how to tips on writing a feature story or letters to the editor, and more.

See our Tried and True Tips for keeping taxpayers informed and raising their awareness of this very important credit

Find Information Specific to:

Find out how you can get involved in your community and increase EITC Awareness:

Contact your IRS relationship manager or e-mail us at partner@irs.gov
or,
If you are affiliated with the government,see the Governmental Liaison Contact Page for more information

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CFED: CSAs Build Students’ College Savings and Aspirations http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/2016/02/01/cfed-csas-build-students-college-savings-and-aspirations/ Mon, 01 Feb 2016 21:44:56 +0000 http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/?p=5297 CSAs Build Students’ College Savings and Aspirations

The data from the 2016 Assets & Opportunity Scorecard is out, and seven years after the recession, financial insecurity is still the norm for too many American families. Take, for example, liquid asset poverty. More than 40% of all American households are “liquid asset poor,” meaning they lack a . . . → Read More: CFED: CSAs Build Students’ College Savings and Aspirations]]> CSAs Build Students’ College Savings and Aspirations

The data from the 2016 Assets & Opportunity Scorecard is out, and seven years after the recession, financial insecurity is still the norm for too many American families. Take, for example, liquid asset poverty. More than 40% of all American households are “liquid asset poor,” meaning they lack a sufficient savings cushion (i.e., assets in the form of bank accounts and other savings that can easily be liquidated) to subsist at the poverty level for just three months in the absence of income. What’s more, households of color are especially vulnerable—nationally, almost two-thirds of households of color are liquid asset poor.

These findings raise troubling questions about the ability of millions of Americans to make investments in lifelong assets, such as homes, businesses and education, all of which are closely correlated with financial stability. In particular, achieving the dream of higher education in the United States is increasingly becoming a “pay to play” proposition. The intersection of several disturbing trends in higher education finance have contributed to this unsustainable system, including:

  • College tuition rates rising faster than inflation.
  • Federal support for lower-income students—Pell grants—that has not kept pace with rising tuition costs.
  • Shrinking state investments in higher education that have forced public institutions to raise tuition to make up the difference.

With the burden of paying for college falling increasingly on individual households, it’s no wonder that less than 10% of low-income students finish college by their mid-twenties.

In this challenging environment, policymakers are looking for innovative and proven solutions. One promising strategy is Children’s Savings Accounts (CSAs)–dedicated savings accounts that often include an initial deposit, plus progressive matches for lower-income children and provisions that restrict the use of incentives to post-secondary education. Research shows that low-income students with up to $500 in college savings are three times more likely to enroll in college and four times more likely to graduate.

Today, the City of Oakland is announcing the launch of its Oakland Promise initiative, a new public-private partnership to make the dream of post-secondary education a reality for all Oakland children. One key component of Oakland Promise is that every child enrolled in kindergarten will automatically receive a CSA with an initial deposit and incentives for them and their families to save. This comes just a few weeks after good news from the other side of the country, where the City of Durham, NC, launched a CSA pilot for all kindergarten students at an inner-city elementary school as part of the mayor’s Poverty Reduction Initiative.

To support these efforts, CFED and partners across the nation have launched the Campaign for Every Kid’s Future. The mission of the Campaign is to raise the visibility of the children’s savings movement, and by doing so, to move toward a future in which every child in the United States will have a CSA in his or her name. We encourage a range of stakeholders who have an interest in building post-secondary savings and aspirations, including policymakers, financial institutions, local providers, child advocates and researchers, to join the Campaign because the opportunity economy we want and need requires all of us to come together.

Here’s what you can do to help put college within reach for more children:

 

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FDIC Announces Upcoming Community Affairs Webinar for Financial Institutions: Savings Strategies During ASW2016 http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/2016/01/28/fdic-announces-upcoming-community-affairs-webinar-savings-strategies-during-asw2016/ Thu, 28 Jan 2016 21:41:42 +0000 http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/?p=5293 FDIC Announces Upcoming Community Affairs Webinar for Financial Institutions: Savings Strategies During America Saves Week 2016

The FDIC’s Division of Depositor and Consumer Protection (DCP) Community Affairs Branch will host a webinar titled Help Encourage Individuals and Families to Save on February 3, 2016, from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. (EST). The webinar will highlight strategies . . . → Read More: FDIC Announces Upcoming Community Affairs Webinar for Financial Institutions: Savings Strategies During ASW2016]]> FDIC Announces Upcoming Community Affairs Webinar for Financial Institutions: Savings Strategies During America Saves Week 2016

The FDIC’s Division of Depositor and Consumer Protection (DCP) Community Affairs Branch will host a webinar titled Help Encourage Individuals and Families to Save on February 3, 2016, from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. (EST). The webinar will highlight strategies and approaches for institutions to consider that encourage savings in conjunction with America Saves Week. This webinar is one in a series of webinars highlighting strategies institutions can use to promote community development and expand access to the banking system.

Highlights:

  • America Saves Week 2016 is February 22 through 27, 2016, and the theme is “Set a Goal, Make a Plan, Save Automatically.”
  • During the upcoming webinar, representatives from America Saves and several financial institutions will join FDIC staff in exploring opportunities to participate in America Saves Week 2016. We will discuss the benefits and lessons learned from participating in a local America Saves initiative, and ways to enhance existing customer relationships through promoting savings.
  • The webinar will be held on Wednesday, February 3, 2016, from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. (EST). The session is free, but registration is required. To participate, institutions must register here by February 1.
  • Each institution is responsible for assessing whether the ideas and information presented during the webinar are appropriate for the institution to pursue, given factors such as the institution’s business focus, existing economic inclusion/community development strategies, financial condition, and market.
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Report identity theft and get a personal recovery plan at IdentityTheft.gov http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/2016/01/28/report-identity-theft-and-get-a-personal-recovery-plan-at-identitytheft-gov/ Thu, 28 Jan 2016 21:37:29 +0000 http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/?p=5290 Report identity theft and get a personal recovery plan at IdentityTheft.gov

Millions of people are affected by identity theft each year. It might start with a mysterious credit card charge, a bill you don’t recognize, or a letter from the IRS that says you already got your refund — even though you didn’t.

If someone uses your information . . . → Read More: Report identity theft and get a personal recovery plan at IdentityTheft.gov]]> Report identity theft and get a personal recovery plan at IdentityTheft.gov

Millions of people are affected by identity theft each year. It might start with a mysterious credit card charge, a bill you don’t recognize, or a letter from the IRS that says you already got your refund — even though you didn’t.

If someone uses your information to make purchases, open new accounts, or get a tax refund, that’s identity theft. Recovering from identity theft often takes time and persistence. That’s why today’s announcement from the FTC is a big deal: New features at IdentityTheft.gov make it easier to report and recover from identity theft.

When you use IdentityTheft.gov to report a problem, you’ll get a personal recovery plan that:

  • walks you through each recovery step
  • tracks your progress and adapts to your changing situation
  • pre-fills letters and forms for you.

Check out this new video to see how it works

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Central Coast Region Family Financial Well-Being Round Table Event http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/2016/01/25/central-coast-region-family-financial-well-being-round-table-event/ Mon, 25 Jan 2016 17:59:29 +0000 http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/?p=5283 Central Coast Region Family Financial Well-Being Round Table Event 

The Ventura County Community Development Corporation (VCCDC) in collaboration with the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco cordially invites you to a special event, Family Financial Well-Being  Forum. 

The event will take place on Wednesday, February 24, 2016 from 8:30AM to 11:30AM.  See attached flyer. 

The purpose of the . . . → Read More: Central Coast Region Family Financial Well-Being Round Table Event]]> Central Coast Region Family Financial Well-Being Round Table Event 

The Ventura County Community Development Corporation (VCCDC) in collaboration with the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco cordially invites you to a special event, Family Financial Well-Being  Forum

The event will take place on Wednesday, February 24, 2016 from 8:30AM to 11:30AM.  See attached flyer

The purpose of the event is to bring together a cross-sector audience to learn about issues related to Ventura County family’s financial well-being; educate the community about what works in asset-building and available resources; share existing efforts around family financial well-being locally, initiate new relationships and explore opportunities to strengthen existing partnerships.

VCCDC’s short-term goal is to have an initial dialogue and identify interested partners to join our efforts to lead the formation of a new cross-sector collaborative in Ventura County aimed at increasing the number of households that are asset-secure through innovative partnerships, programs and policies that reduce economic insecurity by building financial stability and success.   Our long-term goal is to expand the collaborative to Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties.

Participants will include, non-profit organizations serving low-income families, affordable housing providers, financial institutions, local government, housing authorities, education and health sectors.   Attached is a flyer with registration information.

Ventura County Community Development Corporation

2231 Sturgis Road, Suite A, Oxnard, CA 93030 | Phone: 805-273-7800 ext. 7801

Direct: 805-273-7801 | Fax: 805-604-1359 |Email:  bgarcia@vccdc.org

BRE #01388381/NMLS#345281

“We cannot seek achievement for ourselves and forget about progress and prosperity for our community” – Cesar Chavez

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What can community development learn from Los Angeles? Join the discussion at the 2016 National Interagency Community Reinvestment Conference. http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/2016/01/11/what-can-community-development-learn-from-los-angeles-join-the-discussion-at-the-2016-national-interagency-community-reinvestment-conference/ Mon, 11 Jan 2016 23:20:06 +0000 http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/?p=5280

Discuss Feb. 7-10 at the 2016 National Interagency Community Reinvestment Conference

    What can community development learn from Los Angeles?  Join the discussion at the 2016 National Interagency Community Reinvestment Conference.   Economic opportunity does not happen in a vacuum: it takes a coordinated approach to housing, education, public safety, healthcare, transportation, and jobs. At the 2016 National Interagency Community Reinvestment Conference, . . . → Read More: What can community development learn from Los Angeles? Join the discussion at the 2016 National Interagency Community Reinvestment Conference.]]>

Discuss Feb. 7-10 at the 2016 National Interagency Community Reinvestment Conference

   
What can community development learn from Los Angeles?  Join the discussion at the 2016 National Interagency Community Reinvestment Conference.
 
Economic opportunity does not happen in a vacuum: it takes a coordinated approach to housing, education, public safety, healthcare, transportation, and jobs. At the 2016 National Interagency Community Reinvestment Conference, find out how these pathways to opportunity can create vibrant neighborhoods for all Americans.

Join a diverse group of public, nonprofit, and private sector leaders at the premier conference for community development.

 
Highlights Include:
Community Reinvestment Act examination training with regulator insights
Emerging ideas and best practices in community development
Tours of Los Angeles that explore the opportunities and challenges of a fast-changing and revitalizing city
Opportunities to discuss the transformation of Los Angeles’ downtown into a major career and entertainment destination

 

 
Confirmed Keynotes Include:
Roberto E. Barragan, President and CEO, Valley Economic Development Centers
Thomas J. Curry, Comptroller of the Currency
Amias M. Gerety, Acting Assistant Secretary for Financial Institutions, U.S. Treasury
Martin J. Gruenberg, Chairman, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, President and CEO, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Carol Naughton, President, Purpose Built Communities
John C. Williams, President and CEO, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco
 
 
The 2016 National Interagency Community Reinvestment Conference is sponsored by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund
 

 

 

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GO-Biz to Host Small Business Summit in San Francisco – January 19, 2016 http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/2016/01/06/5275/ Wed, 06 Jan 2016 19:35:59 +0000 http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/?p=5275 GO-Biz to Host Small Business Summit in San Francisco –  January 19, 2016

The Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) today announced that it is hosting a Small Business Summit in San Francisco as part of an ongoing series of events throughout the state to help small business owners and entrepreneurs access resources.

The summit . . . → Read More: GO-Biz to Host Small Business Summit in San Francisco – January 19, 2016]]> GO-Biz to Host Small Business Summit in San Francisco –  January 19, 2016

The Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) today announced that it is hosting a Small Business Summit in San Francisco as part of an ongoing series of events throughout the state to help small business owners and entrepreneurs access resources.

The summit features high level representatives from state government including GO-Biz Director Panorea Avdis and Board of Equalization Member Fiona Ma. There will be presentations on the new California Business Portal, small business financing, trade and export resources, state tax credits and incentives, and much more. An expo featuring local resource partners and other state agencies accompanies the free event which is open to the public.

Full agenda available here.

GO-Biz Small Business Summit Tuesday, January 19, 2016 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Milton Marks Auditorium 455 Golden Gate Ave San Francisco, CA 94102

FREE TO ATTEND – REGISTERhttp://bit.ly/1P5TDUO   The GO-Biz “Grow California Business” summit series kicked off in October in the Central Valley in Clovis, CA. Nearly 125 small business owners met with representatives from state and local government.

About GO-Biz          

The Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) serves as California’s single point of contact for economic development and job creation efforts. GO-Biz offers a range of services to business owners including: attraction, retention and expansion services, site selection, permit streamlining, clearing of regulatory hurdles, small business assistance, international trade development, assistance with state government, and much more. For more information visit: www.business.ca.gov

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Keep Your Home California: Help for Underwater Homeowners http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/2015/12/18/keep-your-home-california-help-for-underwater-homeowners/ Fri, 18 Dec 2015 17:54:13 +0000 http://caflm.blogs.ca.gov/?p=5271  

California homeowners with unaffordable or underwater mortgages could receive as much as $100,000 in free mortgage assistance from Keep Your Home California, but they are encouraged to apply soon while the federally funded program has program funds remaining

The Principal Reduction Program . . . → Read More: Keep Your Home California: Help for Underwater Homeowners]]> Unaffordable Or Underwater Mortgage? Keep Your Home California Could Help With $100,000 In Mortgage Assistance  

 

California homeowners with unaffordable or underwater mortgages could receive as much as $100,000 in free mortgage assistance from Keep Your Home California, but they are encouraged to apply soon while the federally funded program has program funds remaining

The Principal Reduction Program – the only one of the five Keep Your Home California programs that offers the maximum funding of $100,000 with a single payment – has been expanded to assist more homeowners dealing with unaffordable or underwater mortgages, or in many cases both.

Thousands of homeowners who qualified for the program had the outstanding principal balance on their first mortgage reduced, with many also enjoying lower monthly mortgage payments. Homeowners approved for the program have received an average of $75,000 in principal reduction and a 14% drop in their monthly payment.

“Reducing principal and lowering the monthly payment can make a huge impact for many homeowners, and be the difference between keeping and losing a home,” said Tia Boatman Patterson, Executive Director of the California Housing Finance Agency, the state agency which oversees Keep Your Home California. “Many homeowners who are struggling with their mortgage payments could receive the help they need from the Principal Reduction Program, providing them with a long-term, sustainable solution.”

 

Click here to read the entire press release.

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