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Assembly sends over $100 million child tax credit bill to Governor Murphy’s office – New Jersey Monitor

Assembly lawmakers, in a nearly unanimous vote on Monday, passed a cleanup of the state’s child tax credit that will give rewards to parents next year.

The measure is now moving to Governor Phil Murphy’s office, where it is expected to be signed.

The tax credit, created by a Murphy bill signed into law in June, provides New Jersey residents with a refundable tax credit of up to $500 for each child under age six.

The credit was launched in part in response to runaway inflation in the spring and early summer, but a drafting error in the bill that became law delayed its effective date until the 2023 tax year, meaning it would not be paid on tax bills due in April. although its cost is accounted for in the current year’s budget.

The bill approved on Monday would make the credits payable on 2022 tax bills.

“The changes we are proposing today are the only legislation that will guarantee New Jerseyans tax relief this year,” said Congresswoman Verlina Reynolds-Jackson (D-Mercer), lead sponsor of the bill.

Although the bill won bipartisan support in both houses, it nevertheless faced some opposition in the Assembly.

Assemblyman Jay Webber (R-Morris), one of four Republicans in his chamber to vote against the bill on Monday, said his Democratic counterparts were doing too little to help struggling residents.

“While making this child tax credit available next year for New Jersey is a good thing, it’s not good enough,” he said from the floor of the Assembly. “We need to do more for our neighbours.

Estimates of the cost of the program vary. Budget scorecards released in late June pegged it at $100 million, while a budget memo prepared by the Office of Legislative Services said it would cost New Jersey $134.7 million in the fiscal year. in progress from July to June and $156.3 million in subsequent years.

Those earning $30,000 or less per year receive the full $500 credit, which decreases by $100 for every $10,000 of additional annual income. The credit is only $100 for those earning between $60,000 and $80,000.

Webber said lawmakers should deepen the state’s $6.8 billion surplus to extend tax relief to workers.

“You are taxing too much and saving too much of our money. It’s not our money. It’s people’s money, taxpayers’ money,” Webber said. “We need to focus more on giving more back.”

He also urged Democrats to consider Republican proposals for tax relief, including a measure that would index state income tax brackets to inflation.

Republicans have attempted to amend the bill to tie the award level to a percentage of the federal child tax credit. Reynolds-Jackson said the change would have prevented rewards from being paid out in the current fiscal year because state officials don’t keep the data they would need to calculate reward levels.

“There would have been no time for implementation,” she said.

State earned income tax credit allocations are calculated based on credits provided under its federal counterpart.

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