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Bills aimed at providing funding for childcare industry passes House

Posted at 6:47 AM, May 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-05 15:51:33-04

IDAHO — A bill that would allocate $70 million for child care passed the House on Tuesday. The voting comes after several childcare providers and parents urged lawmakers to approve the funds before the session ends during a call to action in front of the Capitol on Monday.

House Bill 395 passed on a vote of 38-27. The funds are part of the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA).

“They have to go directly to child care providers so these families can go back to work. They can use them for wage enhancements, systems improvement, training, and this will ensure that these facilities can stay open,” said Rep. Caroline Nilsson Troy. “It’s really important for our low-income families to be able to return to the workforce. We can’t afford to lose any more of these child care facilities.”

The House passed an additional bill that would provide nearly $34 million in COVID-19 federal relief for child care. House Bill 369 passed on a vote of 38-27.

“These funds will be terminated at the end of December, so this is kind of a short-term addition to what we just passed in a previous piece of legislation,” Rep. Nilsson said.

The bills now head to the Senate for consideration.