Local families on financial brink say latest stimulus checks couldn't come fast enough

Dagny Hartmann is a single mom of an 8-year-old boy

 "It’s very stressful, it’s really tight," Hartmann said.

She counts every penny.

"My dog is 12, he could use some care and he is not getting it you know, my kids shoes are falling part, the school closures are costing essential workers so much money," Hartmann said.  

The Seattle mom said with in-person learning not happening for the vast majority of students at Seattle Public Schools, she’s been paying nearly $600 more in childcare bills.

"I really need schools to open that is what we really need," Hartmann said.

With that issue still in limbo, Hartmann said the American Rescue Plan is truly rescuing her family from a financial brink.

The latest round of stimulus checks has been expanded. For a single taxpayer making less than $75,000, they receive upt to $1,400. A couple filing jointly making less than $150,000 will also get the extra cash.

Hartmann said for her family, it breaks down to $2,800 in stimulus money since she gets one for her and her son.

"I will get my car checked out, take my dog to the vet and pay for childcare that’s what I will do," Hartmann said.

The American Rescue Plan is also overhauling the Child Tax Credit for the next year. It’s now expanded from $2,000 to up to $3,600 depending on the age of your child.

For Hartmann the tax credit could net her monthly payments of $250 starting in July. She already knows exactly where that will go.

"I will be able to put him in more sports and extracurricular things that will help enhance his life," Hartmann said.

Policy experts say the expanded child tax credit will go to more low-income families and help bring 4 million kids nationwide out of poverty.

The city of Seattle also says local families can check out this link to see if they qualify for childcare financial aid.