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COVID Relief Package Could Lift 150,000 Ohio Children Out Of Poverty

President-elect Joe Biden speaks, Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020, in Wilmington, Del.
Andrew Harnik
President-elect Joe Biden speaks, Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020, in Wilmington, Del.

Experts say a component of the newly-signed federal COVID-19 relief package could lift millions of children out of poverty. The "American Rescue Plan" increases the Child Tax Credit, which previously sat at $2,000 for each kid.

For each child under the age of six-years-old, that credit goes to $3,600. For kids up to 17-years-old, it’s $3,000 each. That's for single parents making under $75,000 and joint filers under $150,000 a year.

For some families, half will be paid in monthly checks later this year, no later than July. The credit is also refundable, which means taxpayers who don't owe taxes might still get the credit.

John Corlett with the Center for Community Solutions said it’ll have the most profound effect on low-income families since the War on Poverty in the mid-1960s.

“It’s projected to cut child poverty in half in Ohio," Corlett said. "So that could be anywhere between 132,000 and 150,000 children will see their position in life improved and their families’ improved.”

The COVID relief package also includes utility and child care assistance, which Corlett said will also help families with those expenses.

Corlett noted the tax credit expansion is only for a year, but said he’s hopeful seeing the impact on kids’ wellbeing will lead to an extension.