Rep. Gomez, Ways and Means Democrats Unveil Groundbreaking Proposal to Reshape the American Economy

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, Congressman Jimmy Gomez (CA-34), along with House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard E. Neal (MA-01) and Committee Democrats unveiled a groundbreaking plan to reshape the American economy through universal paid family and medical leave, guaranteed access to child care, and permanently extending worker and family-related refundable tax credits from the American Rescue Plan. The Building an Economy for Families Act is the next step in the broader conversation the Ways and Means Committee is leading on infrastructure and rebuilding the post-COVID economy to make it stronger and more equitable than ever before.

“Universal access to paid family and medical leave, as well as guaranteed access to childcare, are cornerstones of an equitable economy that supports ,” said Congressman Gomez. “When I was a child, my own hospital visits for pneumonia nearly bankrupted my parents who worked multiple jobs without paid leave or healthcare. Too many American workers are in that same situation today, exhausted by the never-ending balancing act of keeping their job and maintaining their health. As we rebuild our economy from this public health crisis, we must take this opportunity to create a new foundation for all working families and end our reliance on the status quo that only uplifts a select few.”

“Our economy is premised on the idea that some workers are worthy of ‘perks’, like paid leave or affordable child care that works for their schedules, while the majority are forced to fend for themselves. For our economy to fully recover from this pandemic, we must finally acknowledge that workers have families, and caregiving responsibilities are real,” said Chairman Neal. “Through sensible, but bold investments, we can put workers’ minds at ease and ready our country to come roaring back. All while lifting millions out of poverty by permanently extending the hugely popular expansions the Ways and Means Committee made to key tax credits in the American Rescue Plan. The Building an Economy for Families Act is an investment in our future that we simply cannot afford to pass up. By acting on this plan, we will rebuild our society to be better and stronger than ever before. It's not enough to only focus on the roads that get Americans to work, we need to modernize the supports that get them through the day. This is a time of great need, and we are ready to deliver."

Specifically, the Building an Economy for Families Act:

  • Provides universal paid family and medical leave for all U.S. workers;
  • Increases funds for the Child Care Entitlement to States program and indexes the funds to grow with inflation and child population;
  • Establishes a Child Care Information Network (CCIN) for parents and caregivers to access frequently updated information about available child care slots that meet their needs in their communities;
  • Provides a new refundable payroll tax credit for child care providers to raise wages of essential child care workers;
  • Permanently extends the American Rescue Plan’s historic expansions of the Child Tax Credit (CTC), Child and Dependent Care Credit (CDCC) and Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC);
    • CTC provides $3,000 ($3,600 for young children) per child, fully refundable and payable monthly;
    • CDCC is fully refundable and provides up to $8,000 for qualifying child care expenses of up to $16,000; and
    • EITC provides nearly triple the maximum credit for workers without dependents, and includes an important provision to preserve the value of the EITC in the event of income shocks.
  • Creates a new Worker Information Network (WIN) to assist workers in accessing paid leave, unemployment insurance benefits, and child care; and
  • Invests $15 billion in the physical infrastructure of child care facilities.

For a one-page summary of this legislation, please click here.

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