children & families

When will housing affordability improve? Spoiler alert: It will take some time

BY: - February 19, 2024

Here’s what to know about ongoing construction shortages, high interest rates, where housing prices are climbing, and what policymakers could do about it.

Expanded child tax credit could be in place quickly if passed by Congress, IRS chief says

BY: - February 16, 2024

If passed, the legislation would expand the child tax credit by incrementally raising the refundable portion cap — meaning how much families could see in a refund check — from $1,800 to $1,900 to $2,000 each tax year from 2023 to 2025.

Pennsylvania Capitol Building. May 24, 2022. Harrisburg, Pa. (Photo by Amanda Berg, for the Capital-Star).

Shapiro administration expands paid parental leave for commonwealth employees

BY: - February 15, 2024

The commonwealth is expanding its paid parental leave from six weeks to eight, Shapiro announced.

Congress is looking at expanding the child tax credit again. Who would benefit?

BY: - February 11, 2024

A majority of low-income families who do not currently qualify for the full credit would see some increase just within the first year of the three-year deal, according to an analysis by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

Pennsylvania Gov. Shapiro proposes $48 billion budget with focus on education, economy, and people

BY: , and - February 6, 2024

Shapiro noted that even if every one of the proposals in his budget passes, the state would still have an $11 billion surplus at the end of June 2025.

Drivers keep passing stopped school buses, despite use of cameras to catch them

BY: - February 5, 2024

Pennsylvania said 12 such crashes occurred in 2022 and 13 in 2021, with one death in each year — one a student, one a parent — and 23 injuries across both years. Those figures include a crash that killed a 16-year-old high school student in November 2022 as she was trying to board a school bus in York County.

Child care costs far outpace wages, but dependent care tax credit stuck at 2001 rate

BY: - February 3, 2024

According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, child care costs have increased 214% since 1990, while the average family income has risen 143%.

Child tax credit expanded, business tax breaks get new life in bill passed by U.S. House 

BY: - January 31, 2024

The 357-70 vote sends the bill, dubbed the Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act of 2024, to the U.S. Senate, where lawmakers are expected to vote on it at some point, though passage isn’t guaranteed. 

‘A product that’s killing people’: Lawmakers chastise social media giants for harm to kids

BY: - January 31, 2024

Senators of both parties during the four-hour, emotionally charged hearing promoted a raft of bills the committee has unanimously passed that they say would add significant accountability to tech platforms.

Child tax credit expansion, business incentives combined in new congressional tax plan

BY: - January 16, 2024

The framework led by top tax policy leaders U.S. Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon and Republican Rep. Jason Smith of Missouri would permanently raise the child tax credit over time and restore tax relief for affordable housing projects.