Weekly News Round-up: October 5, 2015

Here are some highlights from the past week’s news on family tax credit issues. Remember – you also can track news coverage throughout the week by visiting our website, where you can filter news by a specific credit and/or state.

  • On Thursday, the Senate Finance Committee discussed ways to reduce improper Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) payments. Leading up to the committee’s meeting, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) released an updated brief on steps lawmakers can take to reduce the credit’s error rate (The Hill, CBPP).
  • The Week’s Joel Dodge shed light on the Center for Economic Progress’s recent pilot program to deliver the EITC in advance, quarterly payments to eligible Chicago-area families. Families receiving the periodic payments were able to rely less on high-interest debt and predatory loans and reported experiencing less financial stress and improved mental health (The Week).
  • Sergio M. Marxuach, policy director for the Center for a New Economy, said that the most powerful way Washington could reduce poverty and promote growth in Puerto Rico would be to extend a version of the federal EITC to the island (The New York Times).
  • NPR’s Danielle Kurtzleben pointed out that while many presidential candidates are promising to “simplify the tax code” by slashing tax brackets, such an approach alone won’t be enough to truly simplify the tax system (Minnesota Public Radio).
  • Doyle McManus of The Los Angeles Times examined how the tax plans released by GOP presidential candidates primarily benefit the wealthy (The Los Angeles Times).
  • Michigan House and Senate Democrats unveiled a new “blueprint for Michigan families,” which calls for a new Child Tax Credit (CTC) and Dependent Care Credit, as well as an expanded Homestead Property Tax Credit (Livingston Daily).
  • RESULTS’ Karen Cunningham wrote on the importance of the EITC and CTC for Montana’s working families, and warned of the dire consequences for workers nationwide should Congress allow certain provisions of both credits to expire in 2017 (The Missoulian).
  • The North Carolina AFL-CIO called on Governor Pat McCrory to veto the “Protect North Carolina Workers Act,” which would limit the use of alternative identification cards for undocumented immigrants and cut off SNAP benefits for tens of thousands of struggling people. Instead the organization proposed restoring the state’s EITC or raising the minimum wage to truly “protect workers” (Progressive Pulse).
  • New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio told CNN that if America wants a healthy economy and thriving middle class, lawmakers should reward work, not wealth. The mayor called for both expanding the EITC and increasing the minimum wage (CNN).