Washington, D.C. — As the nation continues to recover from the devastating economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic, U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) today introduced legislation to put more money in the pockets of hardworking families in Nevada and across the country. The Rebuild Americans’ Income to Strengthen and Empower (RAISE) Working Families Act would create a new $500 refundable tax credit for individuals and $1,000 refundable tax credit for joint filers to boost earnings and provide critical relief to working families.
“Working families in Nevada and across the country are facing stagnant wages, loss of income, and rising health care costs, and these challenges have been worsened by the coronavirus pandemic. We need to make sure middle class families have the support they need to rebuild and thrive—both as we recover from the pandemic and beyond. I’m proud to lead this legislation to help Nevada families put more money in their pockets at a time when so many need it most.”
Legislative text for the Rebuild Americans’ Income to Strengthen and Empower (RAISE) Working Families Act can be found here.
Over the past 40 years, working Americans have endured limited wage growth, and the income of middle-class Americans grew at a slower rate relative to other income groups. And now, due to the coronavirus pandemic, many working families who were already struggling face additional economic challenges. The RAISE Working Families Act would address these challenges by creating a refundable tax credit for individuals and joint filers, building upon the benefits of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Child Tax Credit (CTC), which research has shown are efficient and effective tools in increasing employment and reducing poverty.
Specifically, the RAISE Working Families Act would:
- Create new, fully refundable tax credits for working Americans, namely a $1,000 tax credit for joint filers earning less than $140,000 annually and a $500 tax credit for individuals earning less than $70,000 annually.
- Be applicable from the first dollar of earned income, permitting low-income families and gig workers to qualify for a dollar for dollar match up until the maximum credit threshold.
- Enhance and expand upon existing refundable credits to middle-income earners for the first time, while preserving the CTC benefits for parents and families and the higher EITC boost for low-wage workers who need it most.
- Target the credit toward many who are shut out of current refundable tax benefits, minimizing the long-term budget impact and boosting middle-income workers who are traditionally left behind.
- Be available to working Americans in all 50 states and U.S. territories, with criteria for recipients similar to those of taxpayers who are eligible for the Economic Impact Aid payments under Sec. 2101 of the CARES Act.
- Be fully refundable and phase out at a rate of 2.5% above MAGI of $50,000 for individuals and $100,000 for joint filers.