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Proposed "Golden State Stimulus" aims to help low-income Californians

Posted at 6:08 PM, Jan 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-08 08:56:55-05

Millions of low-income California residents may be able to receive an additional $600 if the governor's proposed Golden State Stimulus is approved.

The stimulus would apply to Californians who make less than $30,000, as well as those who were unable to receive a federal stimulus check, including undocumented immigrants.

That's something Santa Maria organization MICOP says will be a big help for those families.

"We think that the Golden State Stimulus is definitely a win for our immigrant community and for many who are tax filers who have often been excluded and yet we contribute economically,” said Vanessa Terán, MICOP Policy & Communications Associate.

Not only would the Golden State Stimulus benefit low-income households, but it would also go to 2020 taxpayers with individual taxpayer-identification numbers known as ITINs.

"The interesting part about this is that in 2020, to be eligible, we would have to be able to file our taxes, which we ITIN holders always file our taxes and contribute and see little in return, so this will be a first to see that return,” Terán said.

About 4 million people would be eligible for the payment, totaling $2.4 billion.

Policy advocate for CAUSE in Santa Maria, Rebeca Garcia, said she's glad California is stepping up to help but believes more should be done on a federal scale.

"The truth is that they deserve further protection at the federal level. Undocumented workers continue to be excluded from the safety net and stimulus despite the billions that they contribute to the unemployment system through their taxes,” Garcia said.

According to state officials, just last year, nearly 3.9 million earned income tax credit returns were filed by low to moderate-income Californians.

"It's time that we are able to support our families and our children and so many of us would be excited to be included for the first time and moving forward hopefully in the future again,” Terán said.

If the proposed budget is approved by the legislature, payments could go out in February and March.