Low-income Oregonians will receive $600 per month
More than 236,000 Oregon families will each begin receiving a $600 payment this week as part of anew state lawaimed at helping low-income workers.
Direct deposits or paper checks go to people who lived in Oregon in the last six months of 2020 and claimed the Earned Income Tax Credit, tax relief for low-income workers, on their 2020 taxes. Single people who claimed the credit earned less than $16,000, while married couples with three or more children earned less than $57,000.
More than 136,000 Oregon taxpayers will have $600 deposited into their bank account by July 1, while more than 99,000 more will find paper checks in their mailboxes over the next week. They will also receive letters explaining the payment.
In total, nearly $142 million will go to low-income households. Lawmakers who backed the program said it would allow those Oregonians to pay for necessities like rent and groceries.
“While Oregon’s economy has recovered quickly from the pandemic, we know this recovery has not been felt equally by all Oregon workers,” said Senator Kathleen Taylor. , D-Portland, when the law was passed. “We have an urgent opportunity to support the fair recovery of our workforce by sending relief to those on low wages and working families who need it most.”
The one-off payments come as inflation is at its highest level in 40 years. In May,state economists reportedthat 80% of workers in Oregon now earn less, adjusted for inflation, than before the pandemic.
Rural residents in eastern and southern Oregon, where average incomes are lower than those in urban areas, will benefit from the payments. Statewide, one in six taxpayers qualified for the credit, according to the Oregon Department of Revenue. Malheur County has the highest rate, at 23%, and Washington the lowest, at 9%.
The state payments to low-income workers follow three federal stimulus payments totaling $3,200, plus additional payments for dependents, during the Covid pandemic in 2020 and early 2021.
By Julia Shumway of Press Partner Oregon Capital Chronicle