KY Policy Blog

State EITC Would Make a Regressive Tax System Fairer

By Ashley Spalding
May 15, 2014

Previous posts have described how a state Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) would help working low-income Kentuckians make ends meet and reach every corner of the state. A state EITC would also make the tax system fairer, as shown in a new report by the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP).

Kentucky’s tax system has a lot of room for improvement in the area of fairness. Low- and middle-income Kentuckians pay a greater share of their incomes in state and local taxes than those at the top. For instance, read more

Infographic: Make Work Pay for Kentucky Families with a State EITC and Minimum Wage Increase

By Anna Baumann
March 26, 2014

Hundreds of thousands of hardworking Kentuckians in low-wage jobs are struggling to make ends meet. Here are two tools that would give Kentucky families a boost they need: enacting a state Earned Income Tax Credit that builds on the poverty-fighting success of the federal EITC and raising the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour.

Print read more

Infographic: A State Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) for Kentucky

By Ashley Spalding
March 18, 2014

The infographic below shows why adopting a state Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) would be a good move for Kentucky. A state EITC could help more than 400,000 Kentucky families better afford basic necessities, lead to lasting improvements in the lives of children and increase fairness in Kentucky’s tax system. Currently 26 states (including the District of Columbia) have an EITC.

EITC graphic 3 read more

Interactive Map: How a State Earned Income Tax Credit Would Benefit Each Kentucky County

By Ashley Spalding
March 12, 2014

A state Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) in Kentucky would build on the established benefits of the federal EITC, helping working Kentuckians better afford necessities and stimulating local economies. The following interactive map describes the positive impact a state EITC could have on each Kentucky county. Scrolling over a county on the map shows the number and share of people who would benefit and the additional dollars that would flow into each community. To view a larger version of the map, click here.

 

Dashboard 2 Learn About Tableau

  read more

Top 1 Percent of Kentuckians Captured Nearly Half of State Income Growth over Last Few Decades

By Jason Bailey
February 18, 2014

The top 1 percent of earners in Kentucky took home 48.8 percent of state income gains from 1979 to 2007—a share in line with the national average of 53.9 percent—according to a new report released today by the Economic Policy Institute that documents growing income inequality in all 50 states.

In The Increasingly Unequal States of America: Income Inequality by State, Estelle Sommeiller and Mark Price conduct a state-level analysis of income trends from 1917-2011. They show that states reflected the national pattern of extreme growth in income inequality over read more

State EITC Would Help Working Kentuckians Afford Necessities

By Ashley Spalding
February 5, 2014

A state Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), which is included in Governor Beshear’s tax proposal, would help several hundred thousand of Kentucky’s low- and moderate-income working families make ends meet—among many other important positive effects. Those who would benefit include single mothers, children and military families.

The federal EITC, which currently lifts about 6.5 million individuals—half of whom are children—out of poverty each year, has been shown to help working families afford basic necessities and provide long-term benefits to children. It also supports local economies. In 2013, the federal EITC read more

Increase in Tipped Minimum Wage Is Long Overdue

By Jason Bailey
January 30, 2014

Stagnant or falling real wages for many Kentucky workers threatens their standard of living and is leading to growing income inequality. One of the causes of inadequate wages is the failure of state and federal governments to adjust the minimum wage to keep up with inflation. That neglect includes the minimum wage for tipped workers, which has not been increased in 23 years.

House Bill 191 in the 2014 Kentucky General Assembly would gradually raise the minimum wage for tipped workers from $2.13 an hour to 70 percent of the read more

Cut-off in Unemployment Benefits Would Hurt Thousands of Kentuckians and the Economy

By Anna Baumann
December 17, 2013

53,000 long-term unemployed Kentuckians will lose crucial income support in the next year if Congress does not reauthorize Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC), according to a recent report by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

Created during the Great Recession and extended under the American Taxpayer Relief Act, EUC has increased the number of weeks Americans can collect unemployment benefits while they look for work in the still-sluggish economy. If EUC is allowed to expire on December 28, 2013, Kentuckians who have been unemployed for more than 26 weeks will read more

875,000 Kentuckians to See a Cut in Food Assistance Beginning Today

By Jason Bailey
October 29, 2013

end of ARRA SNAP cutsBeginning today, 875,000 Kentuckians will see their food assistance benefits cut when a temporary boost to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as food stamps) expires.

All of the more than 47 million Americans who receive SNAP will see their food assistance reduced. That’s because a modest boost in SNAP benefits—part of the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) designed to strengthen the economy and ease hardship—ends today. For a family of three, the cut will mean a reduction of $29 each month. Benefits will now average read more

Kentucky Fast Food Workers Struggle with Low Wages While Industry Does Well

By Jason Bailey
October 15, 2013

Kentucky’s 32,000 frontline fast-food workers make such low wages that 46 percent of them qualify for low-income public assistance programs at a cost of $115 million in 2011, according to a new report released today by researchers at the University of Illinois and University of California-Berkeley.

The report shows that the low wages of non-managerial fast food workers make them twice as likely as all workers to participate in income-based public assistance programs. In Kentucky in 2011, 44 percent of fast food workers received the earned income tax credit, 11 read more