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Child Tax Credit would benefit around 90% of Montana families

Posted at 9:33 AM, Nov 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-10 11:55:46-05

Many people are wondering how President Biden's Build Back Better plan might affect them.

A portion of the plan includes a child tax credit which would affect about 90% of families in Montana.

“Investments in children at young ages have really high returns,” said Montana State University Associate Professor of Economics Carly Urban.

According to the plan, this could benefit around 198,000 to 209,000 children across the state.

“The phase-out range is actually high enough, we know that Montana earnings are relatively low that a lot of families would benefit from this,” said Urban.

Policy analyst Jackie Semmens says the change with this tax credit is that it would make it more accessible to lower-income families in Montana; this would be an estimated 78,000 kids in Montana not already receiving a tax credit.

“For the first time ever the credit is fully available to the families who need it most,” says Semmens.

This would be a direct payment to families.

The Department of Health and Human Services reports families currently pay around 13% of their income to child care.

“With the pandemic, the importance of childcare has never been so obvious; when schools close, when day-cares close we saw a lot of families struggling,” said Semmens.

Urban points out that this could help families who can't afford the cost of living in Montana.

“How do we get people who grew up here and be able to move back and afford it, this is one of those policy levers where the money is more here, more people will get it here and that might allow more families to build a life here,” said Urban.

Urban and other economists hope that long term, this money will flow back into the economy. “Not only does it help those children but it helps parents to be more economically self-sufficient but it also helps society."

Congress hopes a vote on the Build Back Better plan takes place before Thanksgiving.