Tax time, tax time, it's IRS time in the city ...

Somehow, there doesn't seem to be a song about tax season - and if there is, it may not be printable ...

It is, however, that time of year. And guess what? Assistance is available via Tax Aide, a group of volunteers through AARP and the IRS, providing free help to those eligible.

You really kind of expected the "eligibility" piece, right?

Basically, the folks they're trying to reach are middle to low income, with emphasis on those 60-plus, and you won't have to travel to Longview or Aberdeen to meet them.

At both ends of the county, tax aides will be using space at the libraries. In the north, they will be at the Raymond Timberland Library, beginning approximately Feb. 11, and running every Thursday through April 15. Available times are 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and the library number is 942-2408.

In the south, they will be at the Ocean Park Timberland Library, beginning Feb. 10, every Wednesday through April 15. The contact for more information is Yvonne Howell, at 665-5845. They, too, will be operating from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

No appointment is needed. It's on a sign-in-and-wait-your-turn basis. You will, (obviously, since guesswork doesn't impress the IRS,) need to bring some information with you.

Showing up with identification for yourself and dependents, W-2s, last year's tax records, amounts of credits/rebates received in 2009, and so on, will keep you from running back home and having to wait for your next turn.

Help by trained folks who know what they're doing? Free? Sounds like a good idea!

Another brief heads-up: Beginning Feb. 12, a workshop called Living Well With Chronic Conditions begins in Ilwaco, at the Ocean Beach Hospital meeting room, 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. It's a free six-week experience that takes place once a week for the duration, and explores ways to manage symptoms of chronic diseases in order to live a healthier life. To register, or for more information, contact Denise Ross at 642-6308.

Chronic disease and taxes - perhaps not the happiest topics, but there's help for both!

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