Group pushes for return of CT’s child tax rebate

Published: Apr. 14, 2023 at 6:54 AM EDT|Updated: Apr. 14, 2023 at 2:26 PM EDT
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HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) - A group is pushing for the child tax rebate to return in Connecticut because it claims many families have been struggling to make ends meet.

Friday morning, a group called the Connecticut Child Tax Credit Coalition held a news conference to urge the state to send checks once again to parents.

The group said now there’s an even greater need for this kind of help.

“I lost my mom, and I have to pay for those finances,” said Hadassah Velez, a single mother. “The child tax credit came at a perfect time in my life because it was very much needed still needed.”

Velez said she’s a single mother who earns just a little more than minimum wage.

Last year, parents were eligible for up to $250 dollars per child for a maximum of three children under the age of 18.

To be eligible for the full amount, a single or married person who files tax returns separately had to make less than $100,000. A married couple that files jointly had to make less than 200,000.

Lawmakers have been working on the state’s budget.

Child advocate groups such as Connecticut’s United Way said they would like to see the child tax credit become permanent.

Advocates said they would also like to see it increased to $600 per child. They argued that it’s only getting more expensive to raise a family.

“Raising a child in Connecticut is more expensive than almost anywhere else in the United States,” said Lisa Tepper Bates, United Way of Connecticut. “In our Connecticut United Way’s recent ALICE report, we found that nearly 40 percent of households in this state struggled even before the [COVID-19] pandemic.”

Last year, All Republicans in the state House of Representatives voted against the budget, and only two Senate Republicans supported it.

During hearings, Republican lawmakers argued that not all Connecticut residents had children.

Last year, more than 250,000 parents applied for the rebate.

Those applications represented more than 360,000 children.

Gov. Ned Lamont’s budget includes tax breaks for lower and middle class families. Those who earn less than $50,000 a year will not pay any taxes. Those who earn up to $150,000 could get as much as $600 back.

The families who attended Friday’s news conference said it won’t be enough. They also lost federal benefits.

“Monday is tax day here in Connecticut and a lot of people are thinking about either how they have to pay taxes, or they are not getting a refund they are counting on,” said Sean Scanlon, the state’s comptroller.

Brian Murphy said he has two children, and pays for sports, clothing and other expenses. He said he has to make tough choices.

“Even with all the privilege and benefits that I’ve been afforded, we still find ourselves, my wife and I still find ourselves in these situation we have to make choices our kids get to do things all kids deserve,” Murphy said.

The Finance Committee continues to go over the budget. The deadline for tax policy is Thursday.