González files 2 tax-credit bills in start of new Congress
Resident commissioner joins record number of women in lower chamber
SAN JUAN – Puerto Rico Resident Commissioner Jenniffer González began her second term in the U.S. Congress by filing two measures that aim to increase local citizens’ income and to fight poverty on the island.
González, the island’s lone representative in Congress, filed the Child Tax Credit Equity for Puerto Rico Act, which seeks to extend the Child Tax Credit (CTC) to the island under the same conditions that apply to the states. This legislation would allow local working families with one or two children to claim a federal tax credit of up to $2,000 per child.
The CTC would benefit close to 355,000 families and 404,000 children, which represents $300 million annually, the resident commissioner said in a press release, adding that Congress voted in the last session to “extend the conditions under which the CTC would apply to Puerto Rico.”
The other bill filed by González is the Earned Income Tax Credit Equity for Puerto Rico Act, which would allow local residents to claim annual combined credits of between $300 and $8,500, between the federal version and the local version reestablished in 2019, the press release states, noting that more than 300,000 local taxpayers would benefit from the measure.
On Sunday, newly elected as well as returning members of the U.S. House of Representatives, including González, who won a second term in the Nov. 3 general election, took their oaths of office, marking the official start of the 117th Congress. The House officially reelected House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) to another term despite the Democrats’ narrower majority in the chamber.
Republicans had selected Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) as House minority leader.
The balance of power in the Senate will be decided Tuesday in two Senate runoff elections taking place in Georgia that will determine which party controls the upper chamber.
González, who was co-vice president of the women’s caucus in the last Congress, said that she will form part of a Congress made up by a record number of women. The 117th Congress has 144 women, including the largest number of Republican congresswomen since 2006, she said.
“I appreciate the trust the people of Puerto Rico have placed in me to represent them in the federal capital,” the resident commissioner said in the release. “I trust that in the next four years we will achieve the closer ties to achieve full equality for all Puerto Ricans.
“I will again work in a bipartisan way to advance the issues of health, manufacturing and economic development for Puerto Rico,” González said, noting that she filed the two tax credit measures with the co-sponsorship of Puerto Rican Rep. Darren Soto (D-FL).