The American Rescue Plan temporarily made the Child Tax Credit (CTC) “fully refundable,” extending the benefit to millions of households with low or zero income for the first time. The expansion of the credit has been heralded as a sea change by U.S. social policy by experts across the ideological spectrum. However, there is no consensus on the impact of this change on labor market participation.
Economists, policy experts, and lawmakers disagree on whether the benefit disincentivizes work and how far it would reduce child poverty. With the fate of the Build Back Better Act and the future of refundability uncertain, this conversation with four of the country’s leading experts on tax and welfare policy is especially timely.
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Jacob Bastian, Assistant Professor, Department of Economics, Rutgers University
Kevin Corinth, Staff Director, U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee
Elaine Maag, Senior fellow, Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center at the Urban Institute
Robert Moffit, Professor of Economics, John Hopkins University
Samuel Hammond, Director of Poverty and Welfare Policy, Niskanen Center