Child Tax Credit Set to Begin on July 15

The Child Tax Credit from the American Rescue Plan passed in March will begin to hit families’ bank accounts on July 15. Families will receive half of the tax credit for 2021 in monthly installments, while the second half will come in a lump sum at tax time next year. In all, eligible families will receive $3,600 per child under age six and $3,000 per child between 6 and 17 years old.

 To earn the full credit, single parents must earn below $112,500 per year (for couples, $150,000). Families that filed tax returns for 2019 or 2020 do not need to take any action to receive the child tax credit. 80% of families who got IRS refunds through direct deposit will begin to receive monthly payments on the 15th of every month; families that do not use direct deposit will receive their payments by mail. Families that did not file returns for 2019 or 2020 must use the Non-filer Sign-up Tool to begin receiving payments.

The White House has created a one-pager to help families understand the details of the new child tax credit. Additional information can be found on the IRS website or listed below. We encourage you to spread the word to eligible families in your community.

Resources & Guides

New Report on Strengthening State and Local Economies in Partnership with Nonprofits 

The National Council of Nonprofits recently released a new special report titled “Strengthening State and Local Economies in Partnership with Nonprofits,” which includes principles, recommendations, and models for investing coronavirus state and local fiscal recovery funds. This report is meant to inspire governments at all levels to invest a greater share of the $350 billion in American Rescue Plan Act funds in the recovery and work of charitable nonprofits in their states. It also gives community-based organizations real world examples of successful funding and program models for them to promote with their state, county, city, and Tribal governments. You can use this report to spread the word to other organizations, to reach out to government entities, and more. 

Senator Casey Introduced HELP Act of 2021

In May, Senator Robert Casey (D-PA) introduced S.1570, the Human-Services Emergency Logistic Program (HELP) Act of 2021, which would improve the 211 and 988 hotlines for mental health and community services. The bill would authorize more than $3 billion over seven years to increase the reliability and availability of these hotlines. The bill would also provide resources to generate public awareness and effectively refer individuals to relevant agencies and community-based organizations for mental health, homelessness, and other social and human services needs. The bill has been referred to the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions.

Housing Affordability Act Introduced in the House

Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-DE) has introduced H.R.2126, the Housing Supply and Affordability Act, which would provide grants to municipalities to increase the supply of affordable housing. Grants would be given to entities that create housing plans that reduce barriers to housing development, repurpose land for new housing, revise land use policies, streamline construction approval processes, avoid displacing existing residents, and reduce housing segregation by income and race, among other things. The bill would authorize $300 million per year through 2026. The bill is currently waiting to be considered by the House Committee on Financial Services and the Budget Committee.

CDC Extends Eviction Moratorium for One Month Until the End of July

Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the Center for Disease Control (CDC), announced a one-month extension to the federal eviction moratorium that was put in place last year to mitigate the effects of the pandemic’s economic downturn on renters. Originally set to expire on June 30, the moratorium will now last until July 31 and is intended to be the final extension. The White House cited sharply falling vaccination rates and the slow disbursement of housing aid as the main factors in the decision. Administration officials also announced new initiatives to help renters after the moratorium ends, including better coordination with local officials and legal aid organizations, and new guidance to speed up the allocation of $21.5 billion in rental assistance. Landlord groups have pushed back, saying that the extension will harm the housing market.

Source: New York Times  

Supreme Court Ruling in Fulton vs. City of Philadelphia

A few weeks ago, the Supreme Court issued a unanimous ruling in the case of Fulton v. City of Philadelphia, in favor of Catholic Social Services, which argued its religious liberties were being violated when its contract with the City of Philadelphia was cancelled because the agency refused same-sex couples as foster parents.

The court focused narrowly on the city’s contract, sidestepping larger questions around whether state and local non-discrimination policies that protect people on the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity violate the First Amendment. This narrow ruling only applies to the specific contract between Philadelphia and Catholic Social Services, with no applicability to other state and local non-discrimination policies. The ruling still allows local, state, and federal government to maintain laws and policies that prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identify using taxpayer-funded services.

Source: Child Welfare and Mental Health Coalition

Title IV-E Prevention Services Clearinghouse Reporting Guide

The Administration for Children and Families recently released the Title IV-E Prevention Services Clearinghouse Reporting Guide for Study Authors. This guide provides information in studies that the Clearinghouse uses to determine eligibility for review, assign design and execution ratings, and determine program and service ratings. It aims to facilitate the Clearinghouse review process and help study authors describe their studies completely.

Source: Child Welfare and Mental Health Coalition

New Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Abuse Confirmed by Senate

Late last week, Miriam Delphin-Rittmon was confirmed for the position of Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). She was approved by voice vote in the full Senate, and in a vote of 20-2 in the Senate HELP Committee. Delphin-Rittmon previously served as Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services and as an associate professor of psychiatry at the Yale School of Medicine. She will lead the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), which works to reduce the impact of substance abuse and mental illness.