A Build Back Better Snapshot

Congress had not yet resolved its disputes on President Joe Biden’s Build Back Better plan at press time for this newsletter.  However, a deal on the plan was so close the Biden administration issued a summary of the bill expected to survive.  On Oct. 28, 2021, the White House predicted the bill would provide:

Investments in Children, Families and Caregiving 

  • Universal Preschool for all 3- and 4-year-olds: Expand access to free preschool for more than 6 million children and funding for six years. 
  • Affordable Child Care: Limit child care costs for families to no more than 7% of income, for families earning up to 250% of state median income. The bill affects 20 million children of parents who are working, seeking work, in training or taking care of a serious health issue. Funding included is for six years. 
  • Affordable Care for Older Americans and People with Disabilities: Strengthen an existing program through Medicaid and end the existing backlog;  and improve working conditions for home care workers 
  • Expanded Child Tax Credit: Extend for one year the current expanded Child Tax Credit for more than 35 million American households, with monthly payments for households earning up to $150,000 per year. The bill makes refundability of the Child Tax Credit permanent. 

Investments in Clean Energy and Combatting Climate Change 

  • Clean Energy Tax Credits ($320 billion): Ten-year expanded tax credits for utility-scale and residential clean energy, transmission and storage, clean passenger and commercial vehicles, and clean energy manufacturing. 
  • Resilience Investments ($105 billion): Investments and incentives to address extreme weather (wildfires, droughts, and hurricanes, including in forestry, wetlands, and agriculture), legacy pollution in communities, and a Civilian Climate Corps. 
  • Investments and Incentives for Clean Energy Technology, Manufacturing, and Supply Chains ($110 billion): Targeted incentives to spur new domestic supply chains and technologies such as solar, batteries, and advanced materials, while boosting the competitiveness of existing industries 
  • Clean Energy procurement ($20 billion): Provide incentives for government to be purchaser of next gen technologies, including long-duration storage, small modular reactors, and clean construction materials. 

Affordable Health Care 

  • Affordable Care Act Premium Tax Credits: Extend the expanded Affordable Care Act premium tax credits through 2025 to avoid 3 million people otherwise uninsured to have health insurance. Also make Affordable Care Act premium tax credits available through 2025 to 4 million uninsured people in uncovered states. 
  • Allow Medicare to cover the cost of hearing. Establish a hearing benefit in Medicare, a crucial benefit to our seniors for a reasonable cost.
  • Repeal the Trump Administration Rebate Rule, Which Would Have Increased Seniors’ Drug Premiums 
  • Reduce Cost of Prescription Drugs 

Supports to Strengthen the Middle Class

  • Housing: $150 billion investment in housing affordability and reducing price pressures, including in rural areas. Funds go towards building more than 1 million new affordable rental and single-family homes, rental and down payment assistance, and public housing. 
  • Education Beyond High School and Workforce Development: Reduce costs and expand access to education beyond high school by raising the maximum Pell grant, providing support to Historically Black Colleges & Universities (“HBCUs”), Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs), Minority Serving Institutions (“MSIs”), and Tribal Colleges and Universities (“TCUs”), and investing in workforce development, including community college workforce programs, sector- based training, and apprenticeships. 
  • Earned Income Tax Credit for 17 Million Low-Wage Workers: Extend for one year the current expanded Earned Income Tax Credit for childless workers. 
  • Equity and Other Investments: Investments in maternal health, community violence initiatives, Native communities, disadvantaged farmers, nutrition, pandemic preparedness, and supply chain resilience

Improvements to the Immigration System

Sources of Funding for the Programs (Offsets): 

Stop Rewarding Corporations for Shipping Jobs and Profits Overseas 

  • Global Minimum Tax 
  • Penalty Rate for Foreign Corporations Based in Non-Compliant Countries (i.e. Base Erosion and Anti-Abuse Tax) 

Ask Highest Income Americans to Pay Their Fair Share 

  • New Surtax on Multi-Millionaires and Billionaires 
  • Close Medicare Self-Employment Tax Loophole by Strengthening the Net Investment Income 

Tax for Those Making Over $400,000 

  • Continue Limitation on Excess Business Losses 

Tax Compliance

  •  Invest in IRS Enforcement.