Monday, December 08, 2014

County-level maps show each region's share of earned income tax credit

A recently released interactive county-level map shows exactly who benefits from the earned income tax credit, which was created in 1975 to reduce the federal tax burden on low-income families. EITC is more likely to benefit rural families than urban or suburban ones, says a report from the Center for Rural Affairs. While many low-income families rely on the money, President Obama and the GOP-led Congress are in a battle over its future of the program, with Obama favoring an extension of the program.

Of the top 10 counties that rely on EITC seven are in Mississippi, two in South Dakota and one in Texas. In rural areas, Mississippi has the highest rates of federal tax returns claiming EITC, at 37.5 percent, reports Tim Marema for the Daily Yonder.

But some rural areas rely heavily on the funds, with Tunica County, Mississippi having the nation's highest share of federal tax returns claiming EITC at 56.1 percent, reports Brookings Now. Following Tunica are: Holmes County, Mississippi, 55.5 percent; Shannon County, South Dakota, 54.5 percent; Buffalo County, South Dakota, 54.1 percent; Humphreys County, Mississippi, 53 percent; Claiborne County, Mississippi, 52.7 percent; Starr County, Texas, 52.1 percent; Coahoma County, Mississippi, 51.6 percent; Quitman County, Mississippi, 50.7 percent and Sharkey County, Mississippi, 50.5 percent. Zapata County, Texas receives the highest average amount of EITC at $3,349. (Read more) (Washington Post map: Tunica County is located in the northwestern tip of Mississippi)

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