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Democrats want $3,600 per child tax credits in Covid relief bill

The IRS would distribute the money monthly, totaling $3,600 per child under the age of 6 and $3,000 per child ages 6 to 17, based on a tax filers’ income.
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Rep. Richard Neal, D-Mass., departing the Capitol on Feb. 5, 2021.Al Drago / Bloomberg via Getty Images

WASHINGTON — Congressional Democrats on Monday will unveil a proposed addition to the developing coronavirus relief package that would provide up to $3,600 per child to families over the course of the year.

The IRS would distribute the money monthly, totaling $3,600 per child under the age of 6 and $3,000 per child ages 6 to 17, based on a tax filers’ income, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal, D-Mass., said Monday previewing the plan. NBC News also obtained a draft copy of the proposal.

"Treasury would just issue a check for $300 a month, for example, to the eligible income families, and I think that that would provide greater liquidity assurance and as I said earlier simultaneously create demand," Neal said at a press conference alongside his state's Republican governor, Charlie Baker.

Neal explained that implementation might be complicated and likely would require investing money in technology improvements for the IRS and Treasury Department.

The plan was first reported by The Washington Post.

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The money would begin to be distributed in July if the proposal is included in the Covid-19 relief measure that Democrats in the House and Senate are currently considering. Neal said the Ways and Means Committee plans consider the Covid-19 relief on Wednesday morning and he hopes to have the bill through Congress by mid-March.

“The pandemic is driving families deeper and deeper into poverty, and it’s devastating. We are making the Child Tax Credit more generous, more accessible, and by paying it out monthly, this money is going to be the difference in a roof over someone’s head or food on their table,” Neal said in a statement provided to NBC News.

He added, “This is how the tax code is supposed to work for those who need it most, and so long as I am Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, it’s what you can expect to see from us.”

Senate Democrats and the White House have expressed support for the plan, an aide said.

This comes as Democrats in both chambers accelerated the process last week to pass an overall aid package. President Joe Biden and top Democrats made clear that they are prepared to pass the bill without the support of Republicans. The legislation would include $1,400 direct checks to people based on income level. It would also provide boosted benefits for the unemployed and fund the effort to quickly vaccinate people across the country.