Elizabeth Kneebone

New State Data Show EITC’s Widespread Anti-Poverty Impact
January 11, 2013

'New State Data Show EITC’s Widespread Anti-Poverty Impact' authored by Elizabeth Kneebone and Jane Williams

A New Look at How the Tax Code Works for Working Families
November 19, 2012

As the clock ticks down to January 1, and lawmakers try to hash out a deal to avoid the fiscal cliff and address the expiration of the Bush tax cuts, new data on taxpayers in the United States--collected from federal tax returns and available down to the ZIP code level through Brookings’ EITC Interactive--provide an important perspective on the impact of the tax code on families and communities across the country. For instance, the latest EITC Interactive data--which represent tax returns filed in January through June of 2011--show that key provisions in the tax code proved responsive to the G

The Wrong Way to Look at Helping the Poor
October 11, 2012

In a New York Times op-ed today, Gary MacDougal tackles a pressing and complicated question: What is the most effective way to fight poverty in America? With 15 percent of the population--and one in five children--living below the federal poverty line, this is exactly the conversation we need to have as a country. The problem is that after wondering if the vice presidential candidates will give poverty the attention it deserves in tonight’s debate, the question gets almost immediately obscured by bad math. Dean Baker enumerates a number of ways MacDougal’s arithmetic just doesn’t add up.

U.S. Poverty Continues its Post-Recession Grip
September 13, 2012

Yesterday, the Census Bureau released the latest round of Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage data, giving us a look at 2011. The mixed picture that emerged in yesterday’s release reveals the effects of an economic recovery that has remained sluggish and weak since its official start in June 2009. There was good news. More people were working full-time, year-round jobs in 2011 compared to 2010 (1.7 million), and the number of residents without health insurance dropped by the largest margin since 1999 (1.3 million). But there was also bad news.

EITC Receipt Continues to Rise in Recession's Wake
April 17, 2012

Today, as we mark the close of another tax filing season, an article in this morning’s New York Times reminds us just how important this time of year is to millions of low-income working families struggling to make ends meet. That’s because each year, tax time provides a window of opportunity for low-income workers to connect with one of the country’s most effective poverty alleviation and work support programs--the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).

Subsidies in the Suburbs
October 25, 2011

Guest post by Kenya Covington, Lance Freeman, and Michael Stoll Housing vouchers, like most Americans, have gone suburban. In a new Brookings report, we found that nearly half of housing choice voucher (HCV--previously known as Section 8) recipients within the nation’s largest metro areas live in the suburbs, a proportion that increased, albeit modestly, during the past decade. This shift shouldn’t be a huge surprise.

Parsing U.S. Poverty at the Metropolitan Level
September 22, 2011

Last week’s data from the Census Bureau on poverty and income provided some hints as to the impact of the Great Recession in U.S.

How Well Did the EITC Work During the Recession?
July 27, 2011

In addition to being a highly effective poverty reduction tool, the Earned Income Tax Credit has been found to have a slew of other positive effects on recipients and their families. And in a decade that kicked off with an economic downturn and saw incomes stagnate and decline through a jobless recovery, the EITC tracked well with changes in a growing low-income population, bringing an economic boost into struggling communities at tax time.  But questions remain about how effective the EITC is in a downturn as steep as the one we’ve just experienced, as unemployment rises and it takes longer f

America’s Cities and Suburbs Becoming Safer
June 03, 2011

Last week the FBI’s report on crime in 2010 showed that both property and violent crime rates had fallen to their lowest levels in 40 years. A recent post by Richard Florida raised some interesting points about the latest numbers, particularly in parsing the trends in big cities versus smaller communities and pointing to what demographics might tell us about these changes. Steven Raphael and I recently took a look at crime trends in the nation’s largest metro areas to figure out how the large national declines in both violent and property crime rates since the 1990s have played out across cit

Needed: More, Better, AND Accessible Jobs
May 25, 2011

This recent Per Square Mile post caught my eye (hat tip to my colleague Ben Orr) because it hits on three key issues that affect access to opportunity in our major metro areas: where the poor live, where jobs are, and how transit fits into the picture. And all of these issues came to the fore in our recent study on transit and employment access. In a tidy summary of work done by Ed Glaeser and his colleagues a few years back, Tim De Chant writes, “Cities across the United States are filled with pockets of hardship, and while rural poverty is widespread, too, impoverishment within metropolitan