Advocates call on Congress to pass child tax credit expansion before the end of year
A coalition of Michigan advocacy groups statewide are launching a campaign this week to call on Congress to support expansion of the Child Tax Credit (CTC) during Congress’ lame duck session.
The group says more than 500,000 children in the state would benefit from the CTC expansion if passed in December.
“Congress has an opportunity to help thousands of struggling Michigan families by expanding the Child Tax Credit,” said Monique Stanton, president and CEO of the Michigan League for Public Policy (MLPP). “Permanently expanding this tax credit will have a major, lasting impact on child poverty here in Michigan. Congress must act now to help provide this critical financial security for Michigan’s children.”
In 2021, the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) temporarily expanded the Child Tax Credit to include families earning very low or no income; a temporary boost in credit amounts from a maximum credit of $2,000 per child annually to $3,000 per child ages 6 to 17 annually and $3,600 per child younger than 6 yearly; and provision for half of the credit as an advanced monthly payment between July and December 2021.
Those expansions lapsed at the end of 2021 and the maximum credit returned to $2,000 per child annually.
Currently, more than 554,000 Michigan children do not receive the full $2,000 Child Tax Credit because their families’ earnings are too low, according to the MLPP. Of those children, more than 1 in 4 children live in rural Michigan.
Danielle Atkinson, founding director of Mothering Justice, said this expansion of the CTC is the “the largest middle-class tax cut in a generation.”
“Mothers and caregivers have told us that the previous rounds of the CTC have enabled them to sign their kids up for the afternoon program they couldn’t otherwise afford and invest in the wellbeing of their children,” Atkinson said. “They are also able to stay home and do homework with their children instead of pulling a double shift. These little things add up to improve our economy and support the children who will be our leaders of the future.”
In addition to the MLPP, the campaign also includes the Accounting Aid Society, Mothering Justice, Michigan Community Action, Michigan’s Children, United Way for Southeastern Michigan, United Way of Northwest Michigan and the Michigan Association of United Ways. The campaign will include billboards in Detroit, Flint, Grand Rapids and Lansing and digital advertising statewide.