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Is Your Tax Refund Greater This Year? Thank the Stimulus Bill

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Julius Cesar got his on the Ides of March and many Americans think they get stuck every April 15. But this  tax day is actually leaving most working family taxpayers with more money in their refunds and pockets because of the tax cuts in the economic stimulus bill passed last year.

One-third of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act was made up of tax cuts, and taxpayers are seeing those cuts reflected in their returns this year. The average tax refund is up by nearly 10 percent this year, largely due to the stimulus bill, according to figures from the IRS and the White House.

The Recovery Act has provided $160 billion in tax relief to families and small businesses, with $100 billion going to families. The tax stimulus bill tax cuts include the “Make Work Pay” payroll tax credit of $400 for individuals and $800 per couple that covers 95 percent of tax payers; expanded child care and college tax credits; home buyer tax credits; expanded Earned Income Tax Credit for low-income families; home energy credits and more.

This year’s average tax refund of $3,000 is a record.

Along with the tax cuts, the Recovery Act’s funds went for job creation—some 2 million saved or created—infrastructure rebuilding, clean energy/green jobs, education, health care and other areas.

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