Lydia Nicholson ’16 coauthored a column for the Portland Press Herald asserting that Maine should increase the Earned Income Tax Credit and make it refundable. Nicholson and her coauthor, local resident and volunteer tax preparer Alyra Donisvitch, argue that Maine’s Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC)—which is just 5 percent of the federal credit—is not as effective as it could be, and that a refundable credit would allow for more money to go back into impoverished communities.

“Research has shown that the EITC helps working families make ends meet, reduces poverty, keeps money in our local communities and makes a huge difference in the lives of low-income children,” Nicholson and Donisvitch wrote. “It also is one of the most effective ways to reduce poverty while also encouraging people to work.”

Nicholson has volunteered at the Capital Area CA$H Coalition, which helps low- and moderate-income Mainers by offering free tax preparation to qualified filers during the tax season and connecting residents to financial education resources.