Have your say in the online forum to make the CT tax system fairer / Public News Service

A group that advocates for low- and middle-income families in Connecticut says there must be ways to make the state’s tax system fairer.

A community budget forum this Thursday will focus on the impact of Connecticut’s tax system and labor policies on families. The forum, hosted by Connecticut Voices for Children, will explore ways the state could see more economic justice.

Sana Shah, chief of staff of Connecticut Voices for Children, said one topic would be the “disconnect” between Connecticut as one of the wealthiest states in the United States and its wealth gap. She noted that one of the reasons is the state tax system.

“The average wealthy family only pays 7.1% of its income in state and local taxes,” Shah said. “But our tax system forces our average low-income family to pay 26% of their income in taxes.”

A study 2019 by the Connecticut Department of Revenue Services found that this applied to people who earned less than $45,000 a year. Ultimately, Shah said one of the goals of this forum is to identify some recommendations Connecticut Children for Voices can make to elected officials. It’s online, on Zoomand starts at 6:30 p.m.

A specific point of discussion will be the economic challenges of raising children in Connecticut. Earlier this year, Governor Ned Lamont created the Child Tax Rebate, a grant for families raising children and earning less than $100,000 a year. Shah finds childcare challenges to be another barrier for working mothers.

“For working mothers and for mothers who have even higher salaries,” Shah said. “There’s still a gender gap – because they’re not able to have the same kind of flexibility as a lot of their male counterparts – because women are still primarily in childcare.”

She added that paying child care workers fairly would help make things easier for working parents. Shah’s group also advocates making the child tax refund permanent.

Disclosure: Connecticut Voices for Children contributes to our fund for reporting on policy and budget priorities, children’s issues, early childhood education, human rights, and racial justice. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.

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