Some Michigan Democrats are holding a press conference today in Lansing that Republican lawmakers and the Snyder administration intend to completely ignore. The name of the group is Save Our EITC (Earned Income Tax Credit), and they are on a mission to keep families and children out of poverty — not a top priority of the state’s Republican dominated legislature. Not by a long shot.
It’s been nearly two years since the Snyder administration pushed through a series of tax bills that the state and its businesses are just now beginning to feel. While corporations will enjoy somewhere between $1.6 and $1.8 billion in tax gimmies (with no job-creating strings attached), Michigan residents are getting hammered, particularly the very young and the old — households already teetering on the event horizon of poverty.
Save Our EITC lists the following “fast facts” about the Earned Income Tax Credit:
Fact 1: Think ‘fertilizer’ for the local economy
A study by Anderson Economic Group says for every $1 provided by the EITC, the economy gets $1.67 as those dollars turn over locally.
Fact 2: You have to work to earn the EITC.
The Earned Income Tax Credit is a tax credit designed for working families, who apply for it when they fill out state income tax forms.
Fact 3: Losing $432 can plunge a child into poverty.
The Earned Income Tax Credit returns an average of $432 to working families, most with children. Without the EITC, an estimated 14,000 children in working families will be plunged into poverty.
Michigan is rapidly becoming known for its childhood poverty. The Annie E. Casey Foundation publishes the Kids Count Data Center, a state-by-state statistical database tracking the well-being of children on a variety of criteria. Michigan is an utter disgrace. Currently, one quarter of their children live in poverty, half of all their students qualify for free or reduced lunch, another quarter do not graduate on time. A whopping 37.4 percent of children between newborn and five years of age receive some form of food assistance. Fully one third of Michigan’s babies are born with inadequate prenatal care. As if that’s not bad enough, those numbers are destined to get plenty worse under Snyder’s tax plan as it kicks-in.
$432 per working family = Chump-change for the governor and most lawmakers, but to a family of four, that’s school clothes and supplies, and then some….
Amy Kerr Hardin This article also appears in Voters Legislative Transparency Project