2015-04-02 / Opinion

April Means It’s Crunch Time

Ah, April and its deadlines. While high school seniors rush to polish scholarship applications for the fall semester, the April 15 tax deadline is foremost in the minds of many.

Depending on who you are, what you do, and where you are in life, April can be a lucrative month, a difficult month, or simply a month filled with hope.

For some people, it can be a combination of these things.

High school seniors filled with hope (and, probably, some prayers) are completing waves of applications this month for college scholarships. For some, this will be the difference between going to a sought-after college or, in other cases, whether going to college is an option at all.

At Rogers High School, graduating seniors looking for scholarship help are now scrambling to meet April or May deadlines to apply for one or more of 52 different available scholarships (several new ones just arrived this week).

The scholarship opportunities include the Newport Public Education Foundation Scholarship that goes to a Rogers High graduating senior who has been involved in community service and has exhibited “reliability, strong work ethic and strong academic effort.”

Several scholarships memorialize deceased members of the community. Three of these honor Katie DeCubellis, who was 13 when she was killed in a 1999 traffic accident caused by a drunk driver. One of the scholarships is for a student active in school organizations that “target substance abuse prevention.” These scholarships are available to students pursuing education at a technical program or a two- or four-year college.

Others come from unexpected sources such as Rhode Island Saltwater Anglers, the Newport Gulls baseball team, and the Rhode Island Mineral Hunters.

We applaud the graduating seniors at Rogers and the other secondary schools on Aquidneck Island. We know you’ve worked hard to reach this stage of your academic careers.

With the ever-soaring cost of a bachelor’s degree and beyond, we know how important scholarships can be to the successful launch of your collegiate experience.

April is also the month that we make our accounting with Uncle Sam. Perhaps a dwindling number of taxpayers somehow comprehend the complex federal tax code well enough to do their own tax returns. Or, someone else may be hired to crunch the numbers. Either way, some may anticipate a federal—and maybe even a state of Rhode Island—tax refund.

If appropriate, please remember to express your gratitude to your intrepid tax preparer.

Between those who are paid to do tax returns; the federal, state and local governments that collect taxes; and, lastly, the individuals, families and business who pay them, taxation is big business.

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