NEWS

Don't leave Earned Income credit on tax return table

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald

New research shows that California is poised to lose $1 billion in federal income tax refunds through the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) this year.

Closer to home the estimation of tax loss is $1.4 million in Siskiyou County.

The research was conducted jointly by Anne Stuhldreher, a senior research fellow at the New American Research Foundation, and Antonio Avalos, Professor of Economics at California State University Fresno.

Their report, “Left on the Table,” estimates that 1,100 county residents eligible for the refunds will fail to file for the tax credit.

“These are tough times for families across our great state who are struggling and stretching every dollar to make ends meet,” said Gov. Schwarzenegger in a written statement. “This new report tells us that hundreds of thousands of hard working Californians are missing out on $1 billion in tax refunds through the Earned Income Tax Credit. These dollars belong to our local and state economy and not in Washington.”

The report states that the ETIC is an effective antipoverty program capable of lifting low-income families out of poverty while stimulating the local economy. In order to qualify for the program the resident must have earned income, not be claimed as a dependent and meet certain income requirements along with other qualifications. As part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act the income thresholds and maximum refunds were lifted for 2009 and 2010.

To find out if you qualify Siskiyou County residents can go to www.weconnect.net.

In 2006 the EITC refunds claimed in Siskiyou County totaled $5.57 million which created 30 jobs and more than $890,000 in wages that year. This year the report estimates that the county could miss out on the creation of an additional eight jobs, resulting in wages of $246,000, due to unclaimed refunds.

The New America Foundation is a tax-exempt non-profit organization prohibited from engaging in partisan politics and neither supports or opposes any political candidate, according to information from the foundation.