By U.S. Representative Kay Granger
Fort Worth Star-Telegram
June 13, 2018 12:21 PM CST
Six months ago, Congress passed the most sweeping, pro-growth tax reform since the 1980s. It’s already producing results: higher salaries, more job opportunities, and faster economic growth.
Thanks to the new tax law, the economy is looking brighter. In the months since tax reform became a reality, the economy has added more than 600,000 jobs, and the unemployment rate currently sits at a 17-year low. Nine out of ten Americans are now taking home more money in their paychecks because of reduced taxes. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office credits the increase in economic activity to tax reform, since the law “generates more demand for labor and consequently higher wages.”
Tax reform means that a typical family of four earning $73,000 a year can expect to see an income tax cut of more than $2,000 when they file their tax return next year — slashing their income tax bill in half. The standard deduction has been nearly doubled, so now twice as much income is earned tax-free. This is all great news for Texans.
Tax reform is also making a real difference for our families. President Trump’s tax cut made it a priority to expand the per-child tax credit, which directly increases the money working parents get to keep. In fact, the child tax credit was doubled from $1,000 to $2,000 for each child. Additionally, the new law helps working families by repealing the burdensome Obamacare individual mandate.
As a direct result of the law, thousands of new, good paying jobs are expected to be created. President Trump’s tax law delivers real relief to businesses by lowering the federal corporate tax rate to 21 percent, down from 35 percent, and reduces taxes on small businesses to the lowest they’ve been in 40 years. It also means that businesses will be able to immediately write off the full cost of new equipment to improve operations and enhance the skills of their workers.
So far, more than 500 companies of all sizes have used their new tax savings to give bonuses, increase wages, hire more staff, and expand benefit programs. In just the last few months, companies have distributed more than $4 billion in bonuses to their employees. These have the potential to power an economic renaissance in the communities left behind by the global economy by reducing tax rates even further in disadvantaged areas.
In the Lone Star State, we’ve already seen prominent Texas-based companies such as American Airlines, Southwest Airlines, AT&T, Texas Capital Bank, and Comerica Bank give bonuses and raises. Additionally, several companies with a presence in our state have also boosted worker compensation, including: Apple, Wal-Mart, T.J. Maxx, Home Depot, Lowe's, Cintas Corporation, Chipotle Mexican Grill, Starbucks Coffee Company, FedEx , and McDonald’s. Under the new tax law, we’re seeing more companies investing in their workers and our economy, instead of fleeing the United States.
Thanks to tax reform and a Republican Congress, two-thirds of our fellow citizens now believe it is a good time to find a quality job in the United States. According to a recent Gallup poll, Americans are more satisfied than they have been in nearly 13 years with the way things are going. Wages are up, there are more jobs available, and the economy is booming.
I will never stop fighting to make this economy better so that everyone has a shot at the American dream. That’s why I was proud to support President Trump’s tax reform legislation.
Kay Granger is a Republican congresswoman from Fort Worth, representing Texas Congressional District 12. Elected in 1996, she currently serves as the chairwoman of the House Appropriations Defense Subcommittee.
The op-ed can also be found here.