Aviva Aron-Dine '05 Testifies on Tax Code Reform Before Senate Finance Committee

Alisa Giardinelli

Aviva Aron-Dine '05 Testifies on Tax Code
Reform Before Senate Finance Committee

by Alisa Giardinelli
5/16/11

Aviva Aron-Dine '05
"There is no plausible case to be made that middle- and low-income households would be better off bearing more of the costs of deficit reduction rather than sharing these costs with high-income households," says federal tax expert Aviva Aron-Dine '05.

Aviva Aron-Dine '05 recently offered witness testimony before the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance, addressing critical questions about tax code reform. Her testimony focused on two specific policy issues: income tax rates on top incomes and provisions of the tax system that support low- and moderate-income working families.

First, Aron-Dine recommended that tax reform not only preserve the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Child Tax Credits (CTC) - but strengthen them:

"The EITC and refundable CTC are well-targeted and effective at achieving the goals of reducing child poverty and alleviating hardship for low-income families with children. Together, the EITC and the refundable Child Tax Credit now lift 7.2 million people out of poverty, including four million children."

These two provisions of the tax code, she says, represent a "success story" in using the tax system to "lean against the trend toward rising inequality and wage stagnation, reduce hardship among families with children, and promote and reward work."

Aron-Dine also recommended that the tax code be used to generate revenue. "The bottom line is that raising taxes on high earners does raise significant revenue and imposes only modest efficiency costs," she says. "There is no plausible case to be made that middle- and low-income households would be better off bearing more of the costs of deficit reduction rather than sharing these costs with high-income households." Watch her complete testimony.

After graduating from Swarthmore with a B.A. in philsophy, Aron-Dine joined the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities as a policy analyst, where she worked on federal tax issues with a particular emphasis on income and estate taxes and the taxation of low- and moderate-income households. She is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the economics department at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, focusing on public finance and labor economics.