Last week we were treated to a self congratulatory news release from House speaker Jill Krowinski and Ways and Means chair Janet Ancel, announcing their latest venture to fight poverty: the child tax credit. “It is critical we continue to work together to support all Vermonters as we recover from pandemic and focus on building resilient communities,” said Speaker Krowinski. “Today’s vote on a child tax credit for working families…is a key part of this plan. H.510 will provide needed relief for Vermonters to make payments on their mortgage or rent, buy food and basic essentials, pay for child care, and so much more.”
What they purposely neglect to tell us is exactly who will get the $48 millions of dollars they are handing out to fight poverty. I looked up the bill, H.510.
It provides that families with incomes up to $200,000 can pocket the full $1200 handout for any number of children under 6. Families with incomes up to $210,000 will get reduced amounts. Part time residents can stay in Vermont long enough to collect at least the first half of the credit. There’s no mention of the magnitude of the $48 million cash handout, half of which is paid up front.
Arguments can be made for reducing the tax burden on some families with children, but this joint statement gets an A for partisan self-congratulation, and an F for telling voters and taxpayers the whole truth.