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Tax Preparers Open for Business

SCRANTON -- Now that the holidays are just about over, tax season is upon us and there are lots of ways tax preparation companies try to get customers in the door.

With the wind whipping and the cold January air here, so is a familiar sign of the season.

It is not Santa or any of his elves, but the Statue of Liberty, waving to drivers passing by Liberty Tax Service on Oak Street in Scranton.

"I don’t do so bad for an old lady," said Donna Etter-Williams of Scranton.

Etter-Williams will be 72 when the tax deadline rolls around in April. And she'll spend four-hours a day outside, trying to entice people to come through the doors with their W-2s.

"Many of them are going by they’ll smile, blow their horns. Occasionally you’ll get a few obnoxious people. You just wave that off," she said.

Up until retirement age, Donna did things like accounting or sub teaching. Now, she spends four hours out in the elements whether it’s cold or wet letting potential customers know they can get their taxes done in where it’s warm.

"We invite them back in to keep warm offer them coffee and hot chocolate. And hand warmers and all those things," said Liberty Tax supervisor Victoria Zawierucha.

So for starting pay of $8 an hour, Donna will pace back and forth outside supplementing her Social Security all while tax season gets into full swing.

"Where else can you dance and sing along to music, greet people and get paid for it?" she wondered.

One problem, Donna admits, is dressing in multiple layers for the cold and then having to answer when nature calls.

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