Taxpayers Save Nearly $1.3 Million with CA$H Greater Portland

More than 705 households participated in CA$H Greater Portland’s free tax filing program this year, saving $142,320 in filing fees and receiving $1,155,572 in state and federal refunds.  

CA$H Greater Portland, an initiative of United Way of Southern Maine in partnership with the Greater Portland community, offers four free ways for taxpayers to file, including at weekly in-person events. Nineteen community members volunteered more than 2,000 hours as tax preparers. Volunteers were certified by the IRS and trained to help filers take advantage of tax credits, including Earned Income Tax Credit.  

“Many of our clients are experiencing economic hardship for the first time,” said Lucia Rico, community impact manager, CA$H and financial stability at United Way of Southern Maine. “They aren’t always sure which tax credits they are eligible for. Our tax preparers can help them get the refunds they deserve.” The program served 179 more households than in 2023. 

In Cumberland County, 9% of households earn less than the federal poverty level, while an additional 28% are ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed). ALICE households live paycheck to paycheck and have little savings for emergencies or for future investments like education, home ownership, or retirement. Programs like CA$H can help set ALICE households on a path to financial stability. Volunteers help clients maximize their tax credits, receive the largest tax refund possible, and guide them on the best ways to use those funds to pay off debt, purchase a vehicle to get back and forth to work, invest in a home, or contribute to generational wealth that can transform their futures. 

CA$H Greater Portland received financial support this year from JP Morgan Chase, KeyBank, Machias Savings Bank, Gorham Savings Bank, Bath Savings Institution, and in-kind support from Systems Engineering.  


Creating Assets, Savings, and Hope (CA$H) Greater Portland is a partnership of community leaders and industry experts working together to help empower individuals and families to achieve long-term financial stability and asset building. We offer free tax preparation to qualified filers during tax season, help employers bring financial education tools to their employees, and educate hard-working families and individuals about programs in the community that can increase their income, reduce debt, and build savings. CA$H is a year-round resource, providing outreach and education about ways you can make the most of your money.