Lawmakers introduce bill they hope will help new parents

Lawmakers introduce bill they hope will help new parents

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WAFF) - It was a big day for new parents. Both Republican and Democratic members of Congress introduced bipartisan legislation Wednesday.

The Advancing Support for Working Families Act would allow families to get an advance of up to $5,000 for the child tax credit in the first year after a birth or adoption.

“We’re very pumped about this if you will,” said Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La.

Cassidy said in a press conference on Wednesday the proposal would allow new parents to use the money to replace their income if they decide to stay home with the child, or new parents can use the money towards child care if they decide to go back to work.

Stefanik said the proposal is pro-family, pro-business and pro-21st century economy.

“This bill empower families with the choice to receive up front financial assistance during that first critical year,” said Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY), who joined the announcement Wednesday.

Arizona’s Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) said the bill proposal will provide parents with more options during the first critical year.

“Our proposal provides an option to those families to either provide help to take care of that baby during the first year of life or to take some time off to be with their baby during those first months," said Sinema.

Studies show 61-percent of Alabama parents don’t have access to paid leave through the Family Medical Leave Act.

The child tax credit currently is worth up to $2,000 for each child who qualifies. Parents can take full advantage of the credit if they make $400,000 adjusted gross income if filing jointly as a married couple—and $200,000 for anyone else filing for the credit.

Lawmakers say it took more than a year to craft the bill to ensure support from both sides of the aisle.

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