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The DOJ delivers the Comey memos to Congress. Also on our rundown: More evidence that rent prices are out of reach in many markets; Wisconsin counties brace for sulfide mining; and the Earth Day focus this weekend in North Dakota is on recycling.

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Big Tax Win for Working Wisconsin Families

A bipartisan agreement in Congress to save the Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit will mean money in the pockets of more than 150,000 Wisconsin families. (monkeybusinessimages/iStockPhoto)
A bipartisan agreement in Congress to save the Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit will mean money in the pockets of more than 150,000 Wisconsin families. (monkeybusinessimages/iStockPhoto)
December 28, 2015

MADISON, Wis. - More than 150,000 working families in Wisconsin and their 300,000 children got a nice Christmas present from Congress, according to Jon Peacock, director of the Wisconsin Budget Project. The bipartisan agreement to preserve the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Child Tax Credit, which came at the very end of the session a few days ago, will give those families an income boost.

Without the provision, Peacock says 175,000 Wisconsin residents could have fallen deeper into poverty.

"The Federal Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit are among the nation's strongest tools to help working families escape poverty and achieve greater self-sufficiency," says Peacock. "So, it's a huge step that Congress voted to make those improvements to those two credits permanent."

The tax credits allow working families to keep more of what they earn. Peacock says the tax credits help keep 100,000 Wisconsinites out of poverty.

While the agreement was an important step for millions of working families across the nation, Peacock says Congress still failed to close what he calls a "glaring hole" in the Earned Income Tax Credit, that leaves behind millions of childless workers each year. Peacock says it's particularly tough on young Wisconsinites who are just starting their careers but he predicts the loophole could be closed next year.

"That's actually an area where there seems recently to have been some bipartisan support," he says. "Certainly the president supports that; Congressman Ryan has talked about it. So, we're hoping that next year, that they'll take that up that's the next big step that they need to take."

Tim Morrissey, Public News Service - WI