LAFAYETTE, LA — A Louisiana Senator is hoping his bill gains momentum after President Trump pushed Congress to pass it in his State of the Union Address.
The Advancing Support for Working Families Act is supported by Democrats and Republicans in the Senate and House of Representatives. Senator Bill Cassidy explained it as a way without raising taxes to give thousands of dollars to a new parent.
“Come on. Let’s go rock climb,” Brittney Bokar told her son, Levi, at the Girard Park playground. She has her hands full like many parents.
But with new legislation Louisiana Senator Bill Cassidy is pushing through Congress, parents adopting or giving birth to a child could get a head start on finances.
“I’m doing it for every new parent. If you think about it, the first year of life is the most expensive year of life,” Senator Cassidy told News 10. “We’re trying to make it less stressful, more able to be done.”
The act is for paid family leave. It would allow parents to take some of their child tax credit in advance. Getting a $5,000 lump sum payment in year one by deducting $500 from the $2,000 child tax credits in the following 10 years.
On Tuesday’s State of the Union Address, President Trump endorsed it, “Now I call on Congress to pass the bipartisan advancing support for working families act, extending family leave to mothers and fathers all across our nation.”
Bokar said, “It would be a big help for us single moms and moms in general.” She didn’t have any paid maternity leave at her job. She used un-paid leave when her premature children were born, but hopes others will be able to use this new option.
“It would help tremendously,” Bokar stated. “Take a weight off our shoulders, and not have to worry are the bills going to get paid or are my kids going to have food on the table.”
Senator Cassidy is encouraged with the national attention, “Having the president endorse it is a good wind in the sails to make it move forward, and my colleagues in both the House and the Senate are working it. We’re hoping to make it happen.”
The bill still has quite the process ahead of it before it’s signed into law on the president’s desk. Next up is committee hearings before it is presented to the full Congress.
You can hear Senator Cassidy’s full interview here: