Tax day deadline keeps downtown post office busy

Monday, April 18, 2011 | 1:24 p.m. CDT; updated 9:59 p.m. CDT, Monday, April 18, 2011
Robert Baker finalizes his tax forms before mailing them in on Monday at the post office on 511 E. Walnut Street. Baker said he wasn't under any pressure turning in his forms this late because he had a tax preparer look over them earlier.

COLUMBIA — On Monday, the last day for residents to file their taxes, the downtown post office was seeing an abnormal amount of activity.

The post office at 511 E. Walnut St. had every window manned mid-day Monday, and a full staff of employees was working to manage the rush of last-minute tax payers. Cheryl Hudson, customer relations coordinator, estimated the traffic coming through the post office doubled a typical day.

“There’s not nearly as much as Christmas, but still much busier than an average Monday,” Hudson said.

Hudson said residents need to make sure they get their tax returns in the collection box at the downtown post office by 7 p.m. Monday. The blue mail boxes around Columbia all have different pick-up times posted and people should check to make sure their returns will be picked up before 7 p.m.

Outside the front doors, organizers and volunteers from Grass Roots Organizing were handing out fliers and raising awareness about corporate tax evasion. They were advocating against cuts to Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.

“If corporations were paying their fair share, we wouldn’t be looking at the kind of cuts we’re looking at now,” Lily Tinker Fortel, an organizer for the group, said.

An article on the IRS website explains that the tax day deadline was extended because Friday, April 15, fell on Emancipation Day, a federal holiday observed in the District of Columbia.

The article also states that the IRS expects to receive more than 140 million individual tax returns, most filed by the April 18 deadline.

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