💵 A simple new idea to help NJ families make ends meet

💵 The proposal would expand the child tax credit

💵 NJ Policy Proposal says the child tax credit already has a proven track record

Are you having a tough time making ends meet these days?

A new report finds there’s a simple and straightforward way to improve affordability in New Jersey for working and middle-class families: Expanding the child tax credit.

Peter Chen, a senior policy analyst for the progressive New Jersey Policy Perspective, said the state's current child tax credit includes kids up to age 6 but the just-completed report proposes changing things in two ways.

“Expanding the age range up to age 12, and increasing the credit amount for the existing age range to a maximum of $1,000 in credit rather than $500," he said.

Living in New Jersey is very expensive.

Chen said expanding the child tax credit makes good economic sense for everybody.

“Housing costs are high, child care costs, food costs, transportation costs, and this would serve to directly support families who need the help,” he said.

“When families get that credit, they’re going and spending it on food, on housing costs, on utilities and bills, and that’s going right back into the local economy. This has a multiplier effect.”

Happy Family In Park
Catherine Yeulet

We know this program works

The current child tax credit was passed with bipartisan support.

“We’re hopeful that a Legislature and a governor that continue to talk about the need to improve affordability, improve opportunity for New Jersey families, would support expanding the child tax credit, it’s a no-brainer for us," Chen said.

The key findings of the report include:

💵 The child tax credit directly helps New Jersey families alleviate the high costs of raising a child.

💵 Expanding the age range of the credit would benefit hundreds of thousands of children and their families.

💵 Doubling the current maximum credit amount would help families pay for even more basic needs.

David Matthau is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at david.matthau@townsquaremedia.com

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