According to a new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank, Oregon Senator Ron Wyden’s position on the Senate Finance Committee provides him with a great opportunity to protect low-income working families.
Parents who receive the federal Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) work more, earn more, and their children do better in school, according to the report. The report also notes that new research suggests that, as these children grow up, they will be more likely to attend college and to earn more as adults. The federal Child Tax Credit (CTC), a related credit that helps with the costs of raising children, also plays a major role in supporting working families as they strive to reach the middle class.
In Oregon, 287,000 households benefited from the federal EITC and 218,000 from the CTC in 2010, according to the CBPP report. Combined, the credits lifted 115,000 Oregonians out of poverty that year, including 59,000 children.
According to the CBPP report, these credits not only help keep parents in jobs, they also help their children — our future workforce — succeed in the long run. Making sure that our children get the education and skills they need for successful careers is vitally important to Oregon’s future economy.
The new CBPP report examines the body of EITC research and compiles significant findings. For example, the report finds that the federal EITC and CTC:
- Improve children’s school performance. Young children in low-income families do better in school if their families receive additional income from the EITC or similar work-based supports, several teams of highly regarded researchers have found. For example, each $1,000 increase in annual income for two to five years led to increases in young children’s school performance on a number of measures, including test scores.
- Likely increase children’s work effort and earnings once they reach adulthood. Another study found, for example, raising a poor family’s income by $3,000 a year (a fairly typical amount for a poor family to receive from the federal EITC and CTC) between a child’s prenatal year and fifth birthday is associated with a significant increase in the child’s earnings in adulthood.
The EITC and CTC were improved in 2009 and these improvements were extended for five years this past January as part of the fiscal cliff legislation.
Senator Wyden is positioned help make these improvements permanent and to be influential in protecting these credits in any tax reform discussions that may take place. For the sake of Oregon’s children and future, let’s hope he will use his position to be a champion for low-income working families.
This post was originally published on www.blueoregon.com on April 9, 2013. The original post can be found at http://www.blueoregon.com/2013/04/report-wyden-positioned-protect-low-income-working-families/.