Fort Gordon opens seasonal tax office

Army Spc. Nathan Diggs prepares a tax return Monday at Fort Gordon. The seasonal tax center at the Courtyard on Brainard Ave. opened Jan. 30 and will be open until April 15.



Fort Gordon opened its seasonal tax office to active duty military, veterans and Department of Defense employees on Monday.

The office at the Courtyard on Brainard Avenue, next to Teresa’s Mexican Restaurant, processed more than 2,400 returns last year, but Capt. Vivek Shah aims to break that record in 2012.

“We have a pretty good system in place,” he said.

Active duty military pay is a conglomerate of benefits and income sources, including combat pay. The transient nature of military duty means that soldiers sometimes pay state income taxes from several locations. The 19 uniformed tax preparers and a small force of civilian volunteers are prepared to answer those questions and more.

The time it takes to file those taxes varies. First priority is given to students in training at Fort Gordon, who are often teenagers right out of basic training without much income to claim. Retirees filing taxes on income from their second careers, rental properties and other assets can sometimes take more than an hour.

Shah said tax office workers question people at the door to make sure they have all their documents before showing them a seat with one of the tax preparers. That avoids having to stop a preparation beforeits completion.

The free service is available through April 15. For more information, call (706) 787-1040.