States are sending free money in place of federal stimulus checks — is inflation relief headed your way?

·8 min read
States are sending free money in place of federal stimulus checks — is inflation relief headed your way?
States are sending free money in place of federal stimulus checks — is inflation relief headed your way?

With the rising cost of food, fuel and just about everything else, you might be wondering what help – if any – could be on the way.

So far, the federal government has been quiet on the prospect of sending out more relief.

President Biden did recently announce a gas-tax holiday that some experts say will provide limited help. But there’s no official word that a fourth federal stimulus check will be heading into bank accounts any time soon.

The government provided three stimulus checks throughout 2020 and 2021 putting more than $803 billion in the hands of Americans who needed it. The payments of $600, $1,200 and $1,400 each went a long way for people trying to weather the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic.

But now, experts say uncertainty is coming in the form of a potential recession.

And though the federal government hasn’t answered the call for more funding yet, several states are stepping in to provide money for residents.

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State rebates

Many states have had historic surpluses over the past year thanks to inflation driving up prices of goods and high pandemic spending. Total state tax collections increased more than 17% in the fourth quarter of 2021 compared to the year before, according to the Tax Policy Center.

“Giving direct aid, direct payments is far more useful than doing income tax cards, or gas tax holidays,” says Lucy Dadayan, senior research associate at the Urban- Brookings Tax Policy Center.

Here’s a list of what states are offering. Make sure you don’t miss yours.

California

Gov. Gavin Newsom is the latest governor to announce rebates.

Millions of Californians will be getting a rebate check of up to $1,050 to help offset the high cost of gas and other goods, known as the middle class tax rebate.

Single people making under $75,000 will get $350 and married couples making under $150,000 will get $700, if a couple has a dependent, that means they get an extra $350, which would total $1050.

Colorado

Coloradans will get $400 cash back this summer to help with the rising costs of gas, groceries and other items.

It will be delivered in the mail in August or September to anyone who filed their tax returns by the end of May 2022. About 3 million people should get the check.

Delaware

A relief rebate program was signed in Delaware in April. It’s a one-time payment of $300 per adult to help with the high cost of groceries and gas.

Checks should have been delivered by the end of May to people who filed their 2020 and 2021 taxes. The government says it’s working to make the payment available to those who didn’t file their taxes by the end of October.

You can check the status of your rebate here).

Georgia

People in Georgia are eligible for a rebate on their 2020 and 2021 taxes, thanks for a revenue surplus. Bill 1302 was signed into law in March.

Married couples can get up to $500 back, if you file jointly. Single filers can get up to $250 while people who file as head of household can get a maxim of $375.

Hawaii

The state government in Hawaii passed a bill giving tax filers a rebate of $300 if they make below $100,000 and $100 for filers who make above that threshold. The department of taxation says it’s still working on how to roll out the measure and hasn’t released any specifics yet.

Idaho

People in Idaho will get an email notifying them of their rebate. Full time residents who filed taxes in 2020-2021 are eligible.

The government is using two ways to calculate the amount, $75 or 12% of your 2020 Idaho state taxes, whichever is greater.

The tax commission says it will issue about 25,000 payments weekly, which can be expected through direct deposit of the mail. You can check the status of your rebate here.

Illinois

In Illinois direct rebate checks will be given to working families. Relief checks of $50 for individuals and $100 per dependent up to three children per family will be sent out at a cost of $685 million.

Indiana

The government in Indiana expects to give more than 4 million $125 checks to residents. thanks to a large state revenue, which grew 14%.

The Department of Revenue says money would start arriving in bank accounts in May and continue until mid-summer. You’re eligible if you filed a resident tax return for 2020 and 2021.

Kentucky

Tax filers in Kentucky will get rebates of up to $500 for single filers and $1,000 for joint filers.

Additionally, Gov. Andy Beshear proposed a one-year reduction in the sales tax rate from 6% to 5%.

Maine

Residents in Maine are getting one of the highest relief payments in the country. Gov. Janet Mills signed the supplemental budget into law in April. It will see people get a one-time payment of $850 for inflation relief.

The money comes from the state’s surplus of $729.3 million. To be eligible for the payment, residents must file a tax return by the end of October 2022.

Single filers will have had a federal adjusted gross income of less than $100,000, $150,000 if filing as head of household or $200,000 for couples filing jointly.

New Jersey

Residents in New Jersey with at least one dependent child and a tax balance of $1 or more will get up to a $500, known as the Middle Class Rebate. Payments will be issued as a check separate from your tax return.

The Division of Taxation in New Jersey will begin mailing checks on July 2.

New Mexico

The state of New Mexico is bringing out financial relief in the form of $750 stimulus. to help with the rising cost of groceries and gas. Two laws were passed in the state providing a rebate and relief payment.

Depending on income, an eligible person will get two to three payments of $250. For families the payments will be $500.

Taxpayers should have received one of those payments either by direct deposit or check already. Another payment will be made later this summer. You can check the status of your return here.

Minnesota

The state of Minnesota passed legislation giving a one-time payment of $750 to front-line workers. Applications are open until July 22.

While Gov. Tim Walz is still trying to get legislators to pass off on sending rebate checks of $1,000 to Minnesotans to cover as the rising price of gas and food, that legislation hasn’t passed yet.

The proposed plan would see people who earn less than $165,000 get $1,000 and couples earning less than $275,00 would get $2,000.

Virginia

Gov. Glen Youngkinn signed the budget this month that will see income tax refunds of up to $250 for individuals and $500 for married couples and eliminates the 1.5% state grocery tax.

Concerns have been raised that stimulus payments have contributed to inflation but Dadayan says that relief money wouldn’t have had as great an effect as supply chain issues, the war in Ukraine and gas prices.

Ivory Johnson, a certified financial planner and founder of Delancey Wealth Management, says stimulus spending goes further than helping the taxpayer, it can be a preventative measure for states.

“The states are doing that because they know either, ‘I send them money, or they file for unemployment, or they file for disability or they file for Medicaid.’ These are things that the state has to pay for,” Johnson says.

Pending stimulus spending

Several other states are considering tax breaks and have legislation pending, including:

New Hampshire

Legislators in New Hampshire have proposed a one-time rebate of $25 to vehicle owners registered in the state between July 2021 and June 2022 to help with fuel costs.

Kansas

Governor Laura Kelly made a budget amendment in April announcing a one-time $250 tax rebate to all Kansans who filed a 2020 tax return in 2021. It will cost the state a total of $460 million but it wasn’t finalized before the legislative session ended.

North Carolina

State senators proposed a one-time $200 payment to all licensed drivers in the state. The Gas Tax Rebate would be funded out of the state’s $1.3 million revenue surplus.

South Carolina

Two democratic legislators in South Carolina have proposed raising income tax 1% in the top marginal rate in order to fund $400 checks for individuals over 17 years of age every year.

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This article provides information only and should not be construed as advice. It is provided without warranty of any kind.

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