More Americans go hungry as child tax credit ends
Democrats in Congress have made major changes to the child tax credit for fiscal 2021. The credit increased from $ 2,000, of which $ 1,400 was reimbursable, to $ 3,600 per child under six and $ 3,000 for each child from 6 to 17 years old and the full amount of the credit was refundable.
In addition, the income floor of $ 2,500 that was in place to start applying for the credit has been removed providing access to low-income families. To top it off, the IRS was tasked with sending six advance payments in 2021, representing half of the credit. Households can claim the balance on their 2021 tax return next year.
However, the changes, which were part of the US bailout, will now expire at the end of the year. Democrats had pushed for a one-year extension of the Build Back Better Act under consideration in the Senate. Hopes to pass the law by Christmas have been dashed as negotiations dragged on and the Senate went on vacation until January.
Senator Joe Manchin created new doubts over any extension when he said he couldn’t vote for the bill, mainly because of objections to the child tax credit.
Households with children saw a a reduction in difficulties and an increased ability to put food on the table after the start of advance payments in July. However, with biting inflation, hunger is on the rise again in the United States, with 1 in 10 households reporting not having enough to eat in the first two weeks of December.