SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) — With the passage of HB 170 in the state legislature last week, some Utah families within certain income brackets could soon be able to receive a child tax credit of up to $1,000 per child ages 1-3, each year. The bill is headed to Gov. Spencer Cox’s desk for final approval.

Local faith and community leaders agree that this child tax credit is an important policy to help Utah families experiencing poverty keep pace with the cost of living and better support their children.

What does the bill say?

The bill passed both houses with almost unanimous consent. If signed into law, parents may claim a non-refundable tax credit of up to $1,000 for each qualifying child. It would not take effect until Jan. 1, 2024.

Income limits will decide if parents receive the full $1,000 credit. If a parent’s income exceeds the following limits, the tax credit will be reduced by 10 cents on every dollar, based on your federal income tax filing:

  • Married, filing separately: $27,000
  • Single filing status or head of household filing status: $43,000
  • Joint filing status: $54,000.

What local leaders have to say about it

Rev. Brian Diggs, Executive Director of Family Promise Salt Lake, is excited about the new child tax credit.

“Working with unsheltered families is often difficult work,” said Diggs. “Perhaps the most difficult part is seeing parents struggle with the most basic of necessities for their children. The recently passed child tax credit will help families with the ever-rising costs of caring for their young children. I applaud our state legislature for their recent efforts but know we can do much more.”  

According to Rachel Brewer of Murray, mother of a one-year-old: “I’m excited that the legislature passed HB170. As a single, working parent, the increasing costs of groceries and daycare squeezes my budget tighter each month. The new tax credit will help reduce some of the burdens, especially with daycare costs being the most expensive during the younger years.” 

While representatives from advocacy and community organizations including Voices for Utah Children, United Way of Salt Lake, and United Today, Stronger Tomorrow UT express their support for the new tax credit, they still have concerns that the policy may not go far enough to support Utah families.

Although this new legislation goes to further help families, these groups are also pushing to pass other programs including childcare stabilization and full-day Kindergarten.

Still, this passing of HB 170 has been applauded by some as an important first step to providing young families with much-needed support, as well as offering insightful data into how critical these tax credits are for children and their parents.