Baldwin calls the Recovery Rebates unfair, aims to fix the new law 

    University of Michigan symposium on investments in youth and young adults in 2018 view of the audience of students watching
    University of Michigan symposium on investments in youth and young adults in 2018. (CC BY-ND 2.0)

    “It’s not right to give nothing to families for dependent children older than 16.” 

    This is what Wisconsin Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin has to say about the Recovery Rebates, so she is introducing legislation Friday to fix the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. She notes that the fix is needed because dependents 17 and older do not count toward what a family gets from the relief package that became law last week.

    The CARES economic stimulus package will give adults $1,200 and $500 per child under the age of 17 for most taxpayers whose incomes are below $75,000, or $150,000 for married couples. 

    That’s right — no credit for 17 or 18-year-olds. No credit for college students or other dependent adults, such as a disabled family member. Even though, in many cases, the parent or caregiver is providing the majority of their financial support. And these dependents are not eligible for the Recovery Rebates for themselves either. 

    Calling the situation unfair to adult dependents and their caretakers or parents, Baldwin is introducing the All Dependents Count Act, to provide direct relief to families with older children and adult dependents.

    “There are many working high school and college students who file a tax return and won’t get a $1,200 payment,” says Baldwin. “The least we should do is provide these households a $500 payment for dependents 17 and up. With high schools and colleges shut down and many of these working students out of work, just like their parents, we need to provide this additional economic support during this challenging time.”

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    Baldwin had proposed larger immediate direct payments of $2,000 that would have gone to every adult, child or non-child dependents as well as additional payments if the public-health crisis extended, but it was not included in the bill that was signed into law.

    Melanie Conklin
    Melanie Conklin is proud to be a native of the state of Wisconsin, which gave humankind the typewriter, progressivism and deep-fried cheese curds. Her several decades in journalism include political beats and columns at Isthmus newspaper, the Wisconsin State Journal and other publications. When not an ink-stained wretch, she served time inside state, local and federal government in communications. She is excited to be back at the craft of journalism as Deputy Editor of the Wisconsin Examiner. It’s what she’s loved ever since getting her master’s degree in journalism from the UW-Madison. Her family includes one husband, two kids, four dogs and five (or more) chinchillas.