(Courtesy Sherrod Brown)
Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, joined faith leaders to call for the Child Tax Credit to be expanded as part of the Build Back Better Act.
COLUMBUS, Ohio — In Ohio, 277,000 children are estimated to be at risk of falling below the poverty line, unless the U.S. Senate acts to extend the Child Tax Credit before leaving for the holidays.
The American Rescue Plan increased the credit and established monthly advance payments, which ended this week.
Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, contends it is putting much-needed money into the pockets of working families.
"90% of families with children under 18 are getting at least a $3,000 tax cut because of the Child Tax Credit," Brown reported. "It makes all the difference in the world for families struggling to pay the rent, families struggling to pay child care and just putting food on the table."
Since July, eligible Ohio families have received payments of at least $250 per child. The Build Back Better Act passed by the U.S. House includes a one-year extension of the credit, but critics argued the increased spending would add more than $1 trillion to the national debt over the next decade.
According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 2.3 million Ohio children would be shut out of the credit if it is not extended for 2022.
Brown hosted an event with faith leaders Wednesday, calling for the Senate to pass the Build Back Better Act, which includes other measures to help low-income families
Mary Novak, executive director of the NETWORK Lobby for Catholic Social Justice, contended those who have the most should be contributing their fair share to advancing the common good.
"Budgets are moral documents and the 2017 Republican tax cuts for the wealthiest were and are immoral," Novak asserted. "We need a tax code that represents and supports everyone."
The 2017 tax law also expanded the Child Tax Credit.
But some Republicans take issue with the current expansion because it is refundable, meaning families who do not owe taxes can still claim it. The IRS said the Build Back Better Act needs to be approved by Dec. 28 to ensure there is no lapse in Advance Child Tax Credit payments in January.