It’s been just over 100 days since we passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Which seemed to us here in middle-class-taskforce-land like a good time to remind folks of some of stuff in the Act providing much-needed help to middle-class families. For example:
- Jobs created by the ARRA are predicted to lower the unemployment rate by almost two percentage points. We expect this change to increase average middle-class incomes by over $1,300, or 2.3%.
- Depending on family type and circumstances, the tax benefits from the ARRA provisions can add $2,000 or more to after-tax family income.
- Combining job and tax effects, the ARRA will lift incomes by around $3,000 for many middle-class families, significantly offsetting their income losses over the recession.
- For middle-class families hit with spells of unemployment, tax credits and safety net expansion in the ARRA, combined with existing unemployment insurance programs, can replace much of the income loss that occurs when a wage-earner in the family loses his or her job.
For more info, see here. And if you just can’t get enough of dot.gov websites, don’t forget www.Recovery.gov, a sui generis exercise in transparency.
Jared Bernstein is the Vice President's chief economist and chief of staff for the Middle Class Task Force.