March 6, 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Plan would make 2009 improvements permanent, expand credit to childless workers
ALBUQUERQUE—Almost 215,000 New Mexico children have benefitted every year from improvements made in 2009 to the federal Earned Income Tax Credit and the Child Tax Credit, according to a factsheet released by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. Unless Congress makes those changes permanent, they will expire in 2017 and 8,600 children will likely be thrust back into poverty.
March 3, 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ALBUQUERQUE—New Mexico Voices for Children has been awarded a three-year $900,000 grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to continue its work to improve the well-being of New Mexico’s children. The grant is for overall operations support. Recently the child advocacy organization’s work has included making KIDS COUNT data more central to their work on state fiscal policy, and advocating for policy proposals outlined in the NM KIDS are COUNTing on Us policy agenda to improve child well-being.
New Mexico’s Working Families Tax Credit (WFTC) is an effective but underutilized tool for helping families that work stay out of poverty. It also helps address the growing gap in income between the wealthiest New Mexicans and low-income families, and the inherent unfairness in our state tax system. Expanding this credit would do even more for New Mexico’s struggling families as they try to work their way into the middle class.
The same week that both President Obama and a bipartisan group of U.S. Senators released proposals for comprehensive federal immigration reform, pro-immigrant policies continued to gain traction in the states on issues including tuition equity and driver's licenses for DREAMers. Nearly three years after Arizona passed SB 1070, anti-immigrant forces are clearly finding themselves increasingly isolated at both the state and federal level in 2013:
With a Supreme Court decision and a presidential election now come and gone, conservatives in many states seem to be having second thoughts about their opposition to the Affordable Care Act. Meanwhile, progressive lawmakers in Iowa and Michigan signaled they were set to introduce legislation on Medicaid expansion:
A new report released by Progressive States Network names New York state a national leader in preventing wage theft -- or the nonpayment or underpayment by employers of wages legally owed to employees. The report also spotlights approaches taken by other states -- including Illinois, New Mexico, Massachusetts, and Florida -- to a nationwide problem it argues is causing economic strain to workers and state taxpayers alike.
As conservative state Attorneys General prepare to take their efforts to overturn the Affordable Care Act all the way to Supreme Court arguments this spring, an outpouring of support for the health law from state legislators last week made it clear that those seeking to scuttle health reform are not the only ones speaking for the states. Over 500 state legislators representing all 50 states signed on to an Amicus Brief backing the constitutionality of the mimimum coverage provision of the law that was submitted to the Supreme Court last week, a broad show of support for the ACA coming at the beginning of both a pivotal election year and new legislative sessions which will see many lawmakers address the implementation of state exchanges provided for under the law. In addition to the filing of the Amicus Brief, legislators in a number of states held press conferences last week to highlight why they are standing up for the health law. Here are some state-by-state highlights of the coverage of both the brief and of the events held in state capitals across the nation last week.