President Biden praised the event as historic, as over 60 million children’s families will receive around $15 billion in the enhanced Child Tax Credit’s first monthly payments.

The disbursement of the first round of improved child tax credit payments on Thursday, July 15, was hailed by President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris as “the day the American family got stronger.”

Biden’s $1.9 trillion “American Rescue Plan,” which was signed into law in the spring of 2021, increased the annual CTC reimbursement to $3,600 per child younger than six and $3,000 per child ages six to seventeen. It also made the tax credit completely refundable and paid out half of it in monthly installments to families.

“I think this will be one of the things the vice president and I will be most proud of when our terms are up,” the president added. “It’s a reflection of our belief that the people of this country who need a tax cut aren’t the folks at the top, they’ve got plenty of tax cuts. They’re doing just fine. It’s the people in the middle. The folks struggling or just looking for a little bit, as my dad would say, a little bit of breathing room.”

Biden said Thursday is a “historic day,” as he was joined in the White House’s East Room by nine families who will receive the increased payments.

Harris also called Thursday “the American family got so much stronger.” While the payments will be made monthly, the impact will be generational.

Biden went on to say that the payments will result in the “largest-ever one-year decrease in child poverty in the history of the United States of America.”

“For the first time in our nation’s history, American working families are receiving monthly tax relief payments to help pay for essentials like doctor’s visits, school supplies, and groceries,” In a separate statement, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen noted, “This major middle-class tax relief and step in reducing child poverty is a remarkable economic victory for America—and also a moral one.”

Biden wants to extend the monthly payment plan until the year 2025 and potentially make it permanent. However, fellow Democratic lawmakers only want the payments to be processed monthly.

“Let us all work together to make sure that the help that is here reaches those who most need it, this year and for years to come,” he said.