Posts Tagged ‘Elaine Maag’

Will Immigrants Get A Tax Windfall From Refundable Credits?

In the end-of-the-year congressional scramble, lawmakers scuttled an effort to permanently extend a number of tax breaks—largely because many feared it would open the door to widespread use of refundable tax credits by undocumented immigrants covered by President Obama’s recent executive order.  But is their concern justified? Three sets of rules related to residency and […]

Why the More Generous Child and Earned Income Tax Credits Should Be Made Permanent

co-authored with William G. Gale While most of the tax drama these days is focused on the fate of 50+ mostly-business tax breaks that expired nearly a year ago, lawmakers are also debating two provisions that are enormously important to low- and moderate-income households-the Child Tax Credit (CTC) and Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). Temporary […]

How Do You Solve a Problem Like Inversions?

How do you catch a tax and pin it down? Can governments make corporations “stay and listen to all they say?” Treasury Secretary Jack Lew in his Washington Post op-ed called on Congress to immediately stop corporations from lowering taxes by incorporating overseas. Former Treasury official Steve Shay suggests the Administration doesn’t need to wait […]

The “Helping Working Families Afford Child Care Act” Would Help, but Doesn’t Solve the Timing Mismatch

The Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit (CDCTC) does not work for low-income families. It fails on three counts – the credit is nonrefundable, covers only a portion of expenses, and comes long after expenses have been incurred. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Patty Murray (D-WA), and Kristin Gillibrand (D-NY) have proposed the […]

Misguided Expansion of the Child Tax Credit

Congresswoman Lynn Jenkins (R-KN) wants to expand the child tax credit (CTC) with the Child Tax Credit Improvement Act of 2014. She’s on the right track, but her proposed expansions are ill-targeted and fail to address the credit’s biggest looming issue: the change in refundability that will hit the poorest recipients after 2017. Jenkins’s plan […]

The Many Moving Parts of Camp’s Tax Reform for Low-Income Families

House Ways & Means Committee Chair Dave Camp’s tax reform plan would make many changes to the two major refundable tax credits aimed at assisting low- and moderate-income working families—the earned income tax credit (EITC) and the Child Tax Credit (CTC).  It isn’t easy to keep track of all the moving parts, but it appears […]

Questions About Expanding the Childless EITC

As the idea of expanding the “childless EITC” gathers steam, it’s time to start thinking about what the next generation of worker credits should look like. Today’s EITC lifts millions of families out of poverty each year by providing a wage subsidy that encourages work. But it largely skips over childless adults. Politicians from President […]

How Rubio’s Anti-Poverty Plan Could Help Improve Aid to Low-Income Workers

Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) has offered the outlines of an ambitious plan that he says would end poverty. One creative piece: Replace the well-known and highly effective earned income tax credit (EITC) with a monthly “federal wage enhancement” for all individuals with qualifying low-wage jobs. It is a bold idea. The EITC, along with the […]

Taxes: A Big Gun In The War on Poverty

When Lyndon Johnson declared his War on Poverty 50 years ago this month, he could not have imagined how many battles would be fought through the Tax Code. In the ‘60s and early ‘70s, the safety net was built almost entirely on spending programs.  Back then, policymakers created Medicare, Medicaid, student loan programs, and Head […]

Analyzing Taxes and Transfers Together

Government redistributes income through tax and spending programs. Nearly everyone pays some tax – be it federal or state income taxes, payroll taxes, or sales taxes. The tax system also affects people by delivering a host of benefits through tax expenditures (subsidies like the mortgage interest deduction or the child tax credit).   And broad spending […]