State offers free tax prep program for eligible residents

A state program is offering eligible Virginians the opportunity to prepare and file their state and federal income taxes online for free using name-brand tax software.

Virginia Free File is a public-private partnership between the Virginia Department of Taxation and the Free File Alliance, a coalition of tax-software companies. The Virginian Free File program is one more than 20 state programs modeled after the successful Internal Revenue Service Free File program used by millions of taxpayers to e-file their federal income tax returns for free.

Free File lets eligible taxpayers e-file their state and federal tax returns for free online using commercial tax-preparation software. Free File supports the Virginia 760 form for residents, the 760PY form for part-year residents, and the 763 form for non-residents.

“In Virginia, we have worked to make tax season easy and efficient for all taxpayers. The Free File program is specifically designed to help working Virginians save on the cost of tax prep, hold on to more of their hard-earned money, and not cost a dime of taxpayer dollars. However, many Virginians eligible for the program don’t use it. If you made less than $57,000 in 2012, I urge you to visit the Virginia Department of Taxation website and learn how you can use the Virginia Free File program to save this tax season,” said Governor McDonnell.

E-filing is the easiest, fastest and safest way to file taxes. Taxpayers who file online and request direct deposit can expect to receive their refunds in a matter of days instead of weeks for those who file on paper.

Most taxpayers who don't qualify for VA Free File can still file their taxes online for free, using the Department of Taxation’s Fillable Forms program. The Fillable Forms return is an online version of Virginia's 760 return and schedules for Virginia residents. There are no income thresholds, and simple math calculations are done for you.

For details about Virginia Free File and Free Fillable Forms, visit the Department of Taxation's website at http://www.tax.virginia.gov and click on the e-file announcement.
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State Police urge motorists to #MoveOver during Memorial Day weekend

Memorial Day signifies the official start of summer, and Virginia State Police officials are urging motorists to "do what’s right when they see lights" and move over.

The “Move Over” law is a lifesaving law intended to protect public safety professionals and highway workers who help to maintain the safety of the Commonwealth’s roads. State Police are using the #MoveOver hashtag on social media to promote the law. > Read more.

Henrico to hold June 8 open house on Route 5 Corridor/Marion Hill study

The Henrico County Planning Department will hold an open house Thursday, June 8 for residents and other members of the public to provide input for a study of the Route 5 Corridor/Marion Hill areas.

The open house will be held from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Varina Area Library, 1875 New Market Road. The meeting’s informal structure will allow the public to attend at their convenience and to ask questions and discuss the study one on one with Planning staff. > Read more.

Henrico real estate staying strong despite low inventory

The Henrico real estate market has been relatively strong for the past month, despite a lower amount of inventory, according to data from Long and Foster Real Estate.

In the past month, 408 homes have been sold in Henrico, which is 2 percent less than were sold in the same timeframe in 2016.

Last year the median sale prices for Henrico homes was $219,975, whereas this month it's up to $232,500, a 6 percent increase. Which means half of the homes in Henrico are priced above $232,500 and half are priced below. > Read more.

Smither named director of Henrico’s Department of Finance

Henrico County Manager John A. Vithoulkas has appointed Edward N. “Ned” Smither Jr. to serve as director of the Department of Finance, effective July 1.

Smither has served Henrico since 2013 as director of the Accounting Division in Finance. He will succeed Eugene H. Walter, who has delayed his retirement until June 30 to ensure an orderly transition within the department.
> Read more.

State honors EMS officials this week

There were nearly 1.5 million emergency medical services calls and 4,063 incidents per day in Virginia just last year.

This week, May 21-27, declared as National EMS week by Gov. Terry McAuliffe, recognizes the more than 34,000 EMS personnel and 631 agencies in the state and commends their efforts and commitment to Commonwealth citizens.
> Read more.

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May 2017
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The 13th annual Gallmeyer Farms Strawberry Fields Festival will take place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at The Berry Patch, 3622 Darbytown Ct. in Varina. The festival features fresh local strawberries (pick your own or pre-picked), live music, food and craft vendors, free hay rides, pony rides ($5) and more. Coolers, chairs and picnics welcome. Admission and parking are free. No pets. For details, visit http://www.gallmeyerfarms.com. Full text

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