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Business and Economy

Group Urges Mainers to Apply for Tax Credit Program

AUGUSTA, Maine - A group known as Creating Assets, Savings and Hope - or CA$H - is urging eligible Mainers to take advantage of the federal and state Earned Income Tax Credit program.

Eligibility for the tax credit is determined by income and any qualifying children. A single person with no children would have to earn about $15,000 or less annually to qualify, while a couple with two kids could qualify with a combined income of just under $50,000.

Janet Smith, the statewide CA$H coordinator, says the program provides a powerful poverty-reduction tool, benefiting 72 million people, including 31 million children. Smith says her group wants to increase the number of people receiving the credit by 5 percent to reach more than 1,500 Maine workers.

"This initiative brings together partners to help guide low-income families towards a way to save money and take advantage of income tax refunds," she says.

Smith said a new national report by the Corporation for Enterprise Development indicates that 47 percent of Maine's households find themselves in perpetual financial insecurity, unable to build the savings needed to last even three months in the event of an emergency.