CHILD CARE can be costly – but an expected government proposal may ease the burden on parents.
New York Gov. Kathy Hochul and the state legislature are reportedly hoping to increase childcare funding in their first budget proposal to the executive branch, due out on March 1.
The budget could include up to $3 billion in childcare funds, anonymous sources have told Zach Fink, host of the Off Topic/On Politics podcast.
He tweeted yesterday: “GovKathyHochul wants to make it available to those who are 300% below the poverty line, or families earning $120,000 and under.
“Would also increase vendor salaries. Aim to have it up and running later this year.”
Before anything is confirmed, the New York state legislature and the governor would need to agree on the state budget.
Each house of the legislature has published its own budget proposals known as “single house budgets”.
Then the executive and single house budgets form the basis for negotiations between the governor, legislative leaders and their staffs.
Brooklyn Sen. Jabari Brisport, who helped draft the Senate plan, told the New York Times that she proposed providing $2.2 billion to make childcare free for all low-income families.
Senator Brisport also said they would like to see an increase in the number of families entitled to benefits each year.
The Senate plan would allow families earning up to five times the poverty line to qualify for subsidized care by 2024.
This would then increase the state’s commitment to child care funding to more than $4 billion.
Millions of parents could be eligible for these programs, as the city estimates that over 19% of New Yorkers live in poverty and over 41% are at risk.
Although Biden’s Build Back Better has scaled back its childcare funding, many states and territories still have programs to help.
What do other states offer?
Many states receive funding from the federal government, which provides financial assistance to low-income families.
Eligibility requirements are different for each state. So be sure to check the View Your State’s Resources page for the correct qualifications, then click the Family Financial Assistance tab to find your local childcare financial assistance program.
According to a study by SmartAsset, the following three states have the best child care options.
North Dakota received over $100 million in federal funding as part of Congress’ Covid-19 Response and Recovery Packages.
These funds are specifically intended for the early childhood and childcare sector.
In February, the Child Care Assistance Program also raised skill levels from 60% to 85% of state median earnings.
Now, a North Dakota family of three with a household income of $6,193 per month can qualify – up from $4,372 previously.
Mississippi has its Child Care Development Fund, which provides financial assistance in the form of vouchers to low-income families to afford quality child care services.
Funds are distributed through the Child Care Payment Program (CCPP).
CCPP is administered by the Division of Early Childhood Care and Development (DECCD) in the Mississippi Department of Human Services.
Child Care Allowance is available to families who meet income guidelines and minimum work and/or school requirements.
Some families may have to pay a co-payment based on household income and family size.
To apply, the application asks for your provider, who must be licensed or registered, a relative (grandparent, great-grandparent, aunt, uncle, or non-resident sibling), a home provider, or a family friend who cares only for the children of your family.
All Vendors must be at least 18 years of age.
More ways to get help with childcare costs
Credit for child care and dependency
If you’re paying for someone to take care of your child so you can work or find a job, you may be able to apply for a child and dependent care loan.
Previously, you could use it to claim expenses of up to $3,000 per year to cover the cost of childcare for your child.
While for more people, you can claim up to $6,000 (20% to 35%).
Post-pandemic, you can now claim up to 50% of those expenses, up to a maximum of $8,000 for a child and $16,000 for two or more dependents.
This means you can reduce your tax bill by up to $4,000 per child, or $8,000 for two or more children.
This tax subsidy can be claimed each year in the tax return.
The deadline for filing taxes for 2021 is April 18, 2022.
To help you apply, you must keep a detailed account of all childcare expenses, fill out Form 2441, and attach it to your tax return.
Extended child allowance
To maximize your money, make sure you take advantage of the Extended Child Tax Credit (CTC) as well.
These are part of the landmark $1.9 trillion America Rescue Plan that was signed into law last year.
Couples earning less than $150,000 or an individual earning less than $75,000 can receive the maximum credit of up to $3,600 per child.
Regardless of whether you received the first half as prepayments, you still need to file a tax return to claim the rest.
Earned Income Tax Credit
Low-income workers can get an additional credit on their tax bill called the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).
You can currently claim up to $6,728 annually, depending on how you file your taxes and how many children you have.
Married couples can now earn up to $27,380 a year in combined income – up from $21,710 before and still qualify.
You will receive a refund if the credit is worth more than the tax owed.
Earlier projection and projection
Early Head Start is for children from birth to the age of three and Head Start is for children between the ages of three and five.
These programs aim to support children’s development and work with families to support their children.
Both are federally funded programs and are conducted in every state, territory and many tribal communities.
Families with incomes at or below the poverty line may be eligible for Head Start services.
Special consideration is given to children with disabilities, children in foster care, families affected by homelessness and families receiving certain types of public support.
To find out if your family is eligible, contact your nearest Head Start program.
Government-funded pre-kindergarten programs serve children between the ages of three and five.
They focus on early education and school readiness.
Some states offer these programs to eligible families at little or no cost, and the programs may be full-time or part-time.
Your state child care and referral agency can usually tell you if there is one in your area.
There are nearly 400 agencies in the US – find your nearest one here.
Accounts for care recipients
Some employers have plans that allow employees to put a portion of their paycheck into a special fund dedicated to childcare.
This money is not taxed and can only be used for childcare costs.
Like the child and care allowance, families are eligible if both spouses work or attend school and the children are under 13 years old.
Speak to your workplace human resources department to see if a foster account is available for you and how to get started.
Since your tax refunds will be sent out this week, here’s what you need to know.
In addition, here is the deadline for submitting your child tax credit.
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https://www.the-sun.com/money/5004182/child-care-costs-help-new-york/ Millions of Americans could get money to help with child care costs