Protect credits that help veterans

Two important credits that many veterans rely on are on the chopping block if congress fails to act. We can honor the nearly 250,000 veterans and their families living in Arkansas by making sure that these credits continue so that they can keep more of their paychecks when times are lean. The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Child Tax Credit (CTC) are our nation’s strongest tools for fighting poverty and supporting working families, and they support 2 million veteran and military households and 2.6 million kids in those families nationwide. In Arkansas alone, 18,000 military and veteran families stand to lose all or part of their credits if key provisions of the EITC and CTC expire.

Our elected officials in Washington should honor our veterans by making these credits permanent and expanding them. The structure of the credits now leaves out many young workers and those without kids. Congress needs to make sure that these workers get support, too. About half a million veterans and serving military members would benefit from including more childless and younger workers in the credit program.

Legislators in Arkansas also have an opportunity to use EITCs to support veterans. Unlike about half of the states, Arkansas does not have its own state-level EITC.  There are 32,000 veteran and military families in Arkansas who would be more financially secure if our legislators enacted a state EITC. Veterans and military families who have made sacrifices for our country deserve tax system that is fair to working families like themselves.