What does tax overhaul mean for average family?

Complex new bill was hurried to vote overnight by Senate Republicans

By Scott Johnson - Reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - It is a major political victory for the Trump administration and congressional Republicans as they passed a tax overhaul, but what does it mean for the average family?

There are critics of the plan who say it was rushed through, but there are also a lot of supporters who feel it was necessary.

For the average family, there will be some changes when you file.

The complex new bill was hurried to a vote overnight by Senate Republicans, and now Americans are left to find out what it means for them, such as David Renner, who said the system isn't bad now, but he's now opposed if taxes go lower.

"I don't pretend to understand it, because I don’t think anyone does," Renner said.

"But at end of the day, getting your taxes lowered is your goal?" News4Jax's Scott Johnson asked.

"Yes, that would be nice," Renner said.

The plan would lower the federal tax you pay in most tax brackets. Also, the standard deduction almost doubles from $12,700 to $24,000 for a married couple; that would significantly lower the amount of people who itemize deductions.

Another big change: the personal exemptions are gone, where you check $4,050 for yourself, a spouse and any dependent.

Critics say that could eliminate any benefits families who have three or more children receive in the bill.

However, the Senate bill would increase the child tax credit from $1,000 to $2,000, but that won't be available to the lowest income families if they don't pay federal taxes. However, it's possible if you make enough, you could get a check from the government.

Proponents of the plan in Florida, such as Chris Hudson with Americans For Prosperity, say this will be good for Florida taxpayers.

"Rigging the U.S. economy for the people of Florida would mean more jobs, more money in the pockets of individuals of Florida," Hudson said. "It would make it easier for every single person to live their American dream."

Florida Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson voted along party lines against the bill. Nelson proposed making the middle-class tax cuts permanent. His amendment was voted down.

"The modest middle-class tax breaks are not permanent, in seven or eight years, they cease to exist, they sunset," Nelson said in a statement.

There are some differences from the House plan that already passed. The two Legislative bodies will be having meetings to work out the differences.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Saturday disputed projections that the Senate's tax bill would add to the nation's debt woes.

Back home in Kentucky just hours after the Senate narrowly pushed through the nearly $1.5 trillion tax bill, McConnell predicted that the boldest rewrite of the nation's tax system in decades would generate more than enough economic growth to prevent the burgeoning deficits being forecast.

"I not only don't think it will increase the deficit, I think it will be beyond revenue neutral," he told reporters. "In other words, I think it will produce more than enough to fill that gap."

Over the next decade, the Republicans' tax plan is projected to add at least $1 trillion to the national debt. That would be on top of an additional $10 trillion in deficits over the same period already being forecast by the Congressional Budget Office.

"I'm not one of the total supply-siders who just believes that if you cut taxes, no matter what amount, you turn out ahead," McConnell said. "I still believe in revenue neutrality for tax reform, and I believe this is a revenue-neutral tax reform bill."

Copyright 2017 by WJXT News4Jax. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.