Kuster Statement On House Passage of Comprehensive Child Care Legislation
**Kuster-backed legislation provides $50 billion investment to protect affordable
**These bills come days after Rep. Kuster secured language in the NDAA to reopen the child care facility at CRREL in Hanover**
Today, Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02) voted in favor of two comprehensive child care bills to support child care providers and caregivers during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Child Care is Essential Act, which Congresswoman Kuster cosponsored, provides a historic $50 billion in funding to keep child care providers open through the COVID-19 pandemic and help needy families keep their children enrolled in these programs. The Child Care for Economic Recovery Act, which she has also cosponsored, enhances the refundable child and dependent care tax credit to help working families afford child care. Both pieces of legislation contain critical provisions to help child care providers provide safe environments for children and caregivers during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Child care is an essential service for Granite State families,” said Rep. Kuster. “Without this government intervention, the COVID-19 pandemic could force thousands of child care providers around the country to close. I am proud of my colleagues for passing these two important bills to keep child care providers safe and open, and help working families afford the critical services they provide.”
The Child Care is Essential Act:
- Creates a $50 billion Child Care Stabilization Fund within the existing Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) program.
- Requires employers to keep child care workers on payroll. Facilitates relief from copayments and tuition: Under the legislation, all providers would be required to provide families with relief from copayments and tuition as a condition of receiving stabilization grant funds.
- Promotes health and safety through compliance with public health guidance: Under the legislation, open providers would be required to meet health and safety guidance from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and state and local authorities, and closed providers would have to provide an assurance that they will reopen their program when they are able to implement such guidance. Providers can use stabilization grant funds to purchase equipment and make modifications necessary to meet such guidance.
The Child Care for Economic Recovery Act:
- Provides improved and fairer tax benefits for families and working caregivers by enhancing the child and dependent tax credit (CDCTC), expanding dependent care flexible spending accounts (FSA), and creating a new tax credit to help employees access quality, affordable child care.
- Supports struggling child care providers by providing a new refundable payroll tax credit for child care providers, and incentivizing employers to keep child care workers on payroll.
Creating Greater Federal Investments in Child Care by increasing funds for the Child Care Entitlement to States program, parlaying federal investments into better child care options for working families in conjunction with the CDCTC, supporting family care for essential workers during the COVID-19 crisis, and investing in infrastructure to improve child care s