Tax Refund


Permanently expanding the Child Tax Credit would increase children’s lifetime earnings and education. TPC’s Nikhita Airi reports on new Urban Institute analysis finding that if the 2021 expansion of the CTC had been permanent, children from families with low incomes who had received the CTC growing up would earn between 7 and 12 percent more annually by the time they are 30 years old. High school graduation rates would increase by 1 to 3 percentage points, and college graduation would increase 2 to 6 percentage points. The Senate is now considering a more modest, temporary expansion of the CTC (as well as adjustments to certain business tax breaks), which passed the house with bipartisan support.

Bipartisan bill would extend and enhance the Paid Family and Medical Leave Tax Credit.  US Senators Deb Fischer (R-NE) and Sen. Angus King (I-ME) last week introduced the Paid Family and Medical Leave Tax Credit Extension and Enhancement Act. The bill would make permanent the general business tax credit for employers that voluntarily offer up to 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave (PFML) to employees; this current credit expires in 2025. Among enhancements to current law, the bill would give employers the option to offer PFML to employees on the job at least six months and better target the credit toward younger workers. It would also require more outreach and awareness about the tax credit.

Michigan Court of Appeals to decide on state’s income tax rate increase. The Mackinac Center for Public Policy argues that the Michigan Department of Treasury cannot raise the personal income tax rate to 4.25 percent in 2024. The rate fell to 4.05 percent in 2023 due to a tax cut trigger enacted in 2015. The trigger specifies that the “current rate” must fall when state revenue outpaces inflation by a set amount. The Mackinac Center argues that the law aims to provide permanent tax relief, while the Michigan Department of Treasury says the rate reduction was meant to last one year.  

Taxes and timber in Oregon. ProPublica reports on a state bill that would charge a $10 tax on all property holders in Oregon to pay for fighting wildfires. The bill would raise an estimated $20 million annually, or about 15 percent of the cost of wildfire protection in Oregon this year. Private and public forest and range landowners would pay reduced per-acre fees to the Oregon Department of Forestry for wildfire protection. A competing bill would raise taxes on the timber industry, aiming to restore revenue lost when the state cut taxes on the industry in the 1990s.

 

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