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H.R. 5069 (116th): The Recognizing Poverty Act

About the bill

Would the increase encompass millions in the middle class who don’t want to be classified as impoverished?


The poverty line is an income amount, under which a person or household qualifies for taxpayer-funded benefits programs such as food stamps, free school lunches, or public housing. The measure is determined annually by the Department of Health and Human Services.

In 2019, the federal poverty levels are $12,490 for an individual, $16,910 for a two-person household, $21,330 for a three-person household, and $25,750 for a four-person household.

This is so low that it’s routine for multiples of the poverty line to be used in calculations for programs. For example, Obamacare health insurance tax credits are available for people earning up to quadruple the poverty line.

What the bill does

The …

Sponsor and status

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Sponsor. Representative for New York's 14th congressional district. Democrat.

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Last Updated: Nov 13, 2019
Length: 4 pages
Nov 13, 2019
116th Congress (2019–2021)
Died in a previous Congress

This bill was introduced on November 13, 2019, in a previous session of Congress, but it did not receive a vote.

Although this bill was not enacted, its provisions could have become law by being included in another bill. It is common for legislative text to be introduced concurrently in multiple bills (called companion bills), re-introduced in subsequent sessions of Congress in new bills, or added to larger bills (sometimes called omnibus bills).


11 Cosponsors (11 Democrats)



Nov 13, 2019

Bills and resolutions are referred to committees which debate the bill before possibly sending it on to the whole chamber.

H.R. 5069 (116th) was a bill in the United States Congress.

A bill must be passed by both the House and Senate in identical form and then be signed by the President to become law.

Bills numbers restart every two years. That means there are other bills with the number H.R. 5069. This is the one from the 116th Congress.

This bill was introduced in the 116th Congress, which met from Jan 3, 2019 to Jan 3, 2021. Legislation not passed by the end of a Congress is cleared from the books.

How to cite this information.

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