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Elaine Maag

Principal Research Associate

I believe that we can work toward providing a strong safety net for all people—and that the tax system will always be an important part of that effort.

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Research report

This report analyzes the main provisions of the federal income tax code that provide benefits to families with children, comparing current law with what would be happening had the TCJA not been enacted, and discusses the TCJA’s implications for families of different income levels. On net, almost...

August 16, 2019
Elaine Maag
Research report

The earned income tax credit provides substantial assistance to low- and moderate-income workers. Benefits tilt heavily to families with children. Prompted in part by the success of the credit and in part by shortcomings in the credit, policymakers, advocates, and analysts have offered up reform...

June 10, 2019
Elaine MaagDonald MarronErin Huffer
Brief

The cost-of-living refund (CLR), a proposal from the Economic Security Project, would revise the current earned income tax credit (EITC) by increasing benefits for many people, expanding eligibility for the credit, and paying the credit in advance via monthly payments. The proposal would provide...

June 10, 2019
Elaine MaagDonald MarronErin Huffer
Brief

This research brief and accompanying state fact sheets explore what would happen if the EITC for childless adults was expanded significantly. Through both national and state-level estimates, we show the number of workers who would become newly eligible for the EITC and the increase in EITC...

May 31, 2019
Elaine MaagKevin WernerLaura Wheaton
Brief

Effective marginal tax rates measure how a household’s material resources change as its earned income rises. For example, when a household’s earnings from work rise by $100, its net resources may rise by less than $100 as those earnings may be subject to payroll and federal, state, and local...

March 27, 2019
Elaine MaagC. Eugene SteuerleNina ChienSuzanne Macartney
Research report

A robust carbon tax would generate considerable revenue. Some carbon tax advocates have suggested returning those revenues to Americans through direct payments, often called carbon dividends. We examine how to design these dividends considering two, sometimes conflicting, principles. Carbon...

December 12, 2018
Donald MarronElaine Maag
Brief

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act modestly decreased federal individual income taxes for most low- and middle-income families. However, the federal tax changes interacted with state laws in ways that meant some of these same families could see state tax increases. This brief discusses how implementing...

November 15, 2018
Richard C. AuxierElaine Maag
Brief

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) missed an opportunity to help low-income childless workers, very low-income families with children, and families with young children – all groups where investments could be particularly productive. The child tax credit (CTC) and earned income tax credit (EITC)...

July 30, 2018
Elaine Maag
Research report

Children under age 6 experience the highest rates of poverty of any age group and are particularly vulnerable to poverty’s lasting effects. The child tax credit (CTC) provides a $2,000 per child credit for children under age 17 (along with a credit of up to $500 per dependent 17 and older). But...

April 1, 2018
Elaine MaagChye-Ching HuangEmily HortonChloe Cho

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