Maine closer to expanding income tax credit for workers

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AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) - Maine residents are a step closer to seeing the expansion of a tax credit designed to help the state's workers.

The IRS said it’s distributed more than $206 billion in refunds through March 29. That’s down from $212.3 billion last year.

A committee of the Maine Legislature has passed a bill proposed by Democratic Sen. Eloise Vitelli, of Arrowsic, that would expand the credit from 5% to 23% of the federal earned income tax credit. The proposal would also make other tweaks, such as adding students and some caregivers to the list of people who are eligible for the credit at a reduced amount.

The bill has drawn support from groups that are often on opposite sides of the political aisle. The Maine Heritage Policy Center and Maine People's Alliance agree that expanding the earned income tax credit is a wise move for the state's working people.

The proposal faces more votes.