By Suzanne Potter
This story was originally published by Public News Service.
CARSON CITY, Nev. — More affordable child care, universal Pre-K, an extension of the child tax credit, a new hearing, vision and dental benefit for Medicare are all part of the Build Back Better reconciliation bill currently being negotiated in Washington, D.C.
Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto, D-Nev., and Rep. Susie Lee, D-Nev., spoke Tuesday at a tele-town hall hosted by the group Battle Born Progress.
Masto said the so-called “human infrastructure” bill would be a historic investment in American families.
“The focus of this legislation is to cut taxes for the middle class,” Masto explained. “To make sure that we are doing everything we can to lower costs for Americans, and we are creating jobs and expanding our economy.”
The Build Back Better proposal would open up 200,000 additional slots in subsidized child care, with the family contribution capped at no more than 7% of income. It would also keep the checks from the child tax credit rolling in; up to $300 a month for kids up to age 5 and $250 a month for older children. Opponents say the bill is too costly.
Lee said the Build Back Better reconciliation bill would do a lot to lower health-care costs for seniors by allowing Medicare to negotiate lower prices on prescription drugs and penalizing companies that raise drug prices faster than inflation.
“We’re going to establish a $2,000 out-of-pocket cap for seniors, including a $35-per-month cap for insulin,” Lee noted.
The reconciliation bill would also make major investments in affordable housing and in programs to expand jobs in the clean-energy economy and fight climate change.