Program has prepared more than 900 tax returns for low-income local residents so far this year

So far this tax season, a program providing free income tax preparation services to residents in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties has prepared more than 900 returns for low-income individuals and families.

A partnership that includes Cal Poly, Community Action Partnership of San Luis Obispo County and United Way of Santa Barbara County offers the program that focuses on individuals and families earning less than $50,000 in 2011.

To date, local residents have received a total of about $900,000 in federal income tax refunds, with qualifying families getting an average of $2,456, plus an average of $794 in a child tax credit, according to a news release.

To set up an appointment at one of the tax-preparation sites or for more information, call 549-7684 in San Luis Obispo County, or 922-0329, ext. 114, in northern Santa Barbara County.

Returns are electronically filed and refunds are received in the taxpayer’s bank account in seven to 14 days.