Above: Gottheimer helps announce plans to provide resources to new families to pay for leave and child care.
Today, Wednesday, December 4, 2019, U.S. Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) joined a bipartisan bicameral group of original cosponsors to introduce new legislation that provides resources to help new parents pay for leave and cover the cost of child care, infant care supplies and other expenses associated with a new child.
The Advancing Support for Working Families Act will allow families the option to advance up to $5,000 of their Child Tax Credit in the first year of a child’s life or the first year in which a family adopts a child. Families can also choose to advance their Child Tax Credit, giving families greater flexibility to take time off from work and afford child care and other expenses.
Currently, parents are only able to receive a tax credit of $2,000 per child annually, even though conservative estimates show the average middle-income family will spend nearly $13,000 on child-related expenses in a child’s first years of life.
“This is exactly what bipartisanship should be all about: coming together to actually solve a real problem and make sure we’re helping families, especially in northern New Jersey. Doing that, where you’re helping people without raising taxes, is an excellent win for everybody,” said Congressman Josh Gottheimer during today’s bicameral press conference. “I’ve got young kids and those first few months are critical. It’s important that we make sure our families can do everything they can to be with their children.”
This proposal gives new families more options and support so they do not have to choose between taking on high-interest debt or forgoing time with their newborn in a way that doesn’t raise taxes, endanger Social Security, or create new employer mandates.
In the House, the original cosponsors of this bipartisan House bill include Reps. Colin Allred (TX-32), Elise Stefanik (NY-21), Joe Cunningham (SC-1), and Jeff Van Drew (NJ-2), Jamie Herrera Beutler (WA-3), Anthony Gonzalez (OH-16), and Bryan Steil (WI-1). In the Senate, the bipartisan bill is being introduced by Senators Kyrsten Sinema (AZ), Bill Cassidy, M.D. (LA), Steve Daines (MT), Shelley Capito (WV), and Joe Manchin (WV).
“We applaud the bipartisan focus to help working families,” the Bipartisan Policy Center said today in a supportive statement of the bill. “A huge body of research tells us how critical the first year of life is to a child’s development. Unfortunately, that first year of life can also be very expensive for the family.”
Watch today’s bicameral announcement HERE.
View the bill section by section HERE.