Great news for working parents and children!

Facing another possible government shutdown, last Friday Congress passed and the president signed a federal spending bill for the remainder of 2018. Included in the federal budget is more than $3 billion in increased funding for child care and early learning programs—a major step forward for thousands of working families and their children in Michigan.

The final budget provides nearly $2.4 billion for child care programs through the federal Child Care Development Block Grant (CCDBG), as well as increases of $610 million for Head Start, $20 million for afterschool programs through the 21st Century Community Learning Centers program, and $11.4 million for early intervention programs.

The most significant boost is in funding for child care for families with low wages. This money is intended to fully fund the 2014 federal child care reauthorization that expanded health and safety protections for child care, as well as set the stage for improvements in child care quality and access. While the child care reauthorization was widely praised, it was not accompanied by the new federal funds needed to make its vision a reality.

So what does this mean for Michigan families and children? The Center for Law and Social Policy estimates that the newly-passed budget will bring an additional $69.7 million in federal funding to Michigan in 2018, with the potential to provide care to nearly 3,500 additional children while their parents work to support them.    

The Michigan League for Public Policy has documented problems in Michigan’s child care subsidy program including some of the lowest income eligibility levels in the country, provider rates that have made access to high-quality care difficult, and child care payment practices that have made it difficult for small child care businesses to thrive. The result of these shortcomings has been a dramatic drop in the number of children able to receive a child care subsidy in Michigan.

The League is working with its state and local partners to advocate for important changes in Michigan’s child care subsidy program, and welcomes this unprecedented opportunity to use new federal funds to move the state forward. Please join us in letting your representatives in Congress and in the Michigan Legislature know how much access to high-quality child care means to you, your neighbors or your employees.

Pat Sorenson

Many bright spots in governor’s budget, but cloud of tax cut still looms

For Immediate Release
February 8, 2017

Alex Rossman

Governor’s budget includes funding for many League priorities that support kids, workers and families

LANSING—The Michigan League for Public Policy issued the following statement on Governor Rick Snyder’s 2018 budget presented this morning. This statement can be attributed to Michigan League for Public Policy President & CEO Gilda Z. Jacobs.

“The governor’s budget today is very positive and includes money for many of the programs and services that help struggling workers and families. The League has been a champion for leveraging federal funds to support important state services, and the budget includes $6.8 million to draw down the federal money needed to keep the Heat and Eat program going and $8.4 million in state funds for child care to secure much-needed federal funding. The budget upholds continued funding for the Healthy Michigan Plan, which provides healthcare for more than 600,000 Michiganians with low incomes under the Affordable Care Act, and we appreciate Governor Snyder’s continued commitment to protecting that successful program in Michigan. (more…)

League says Great Start report underscores need for urgent action to invest in, improve child care

Contact: Alex Rossman

Lawmakers have 16 days—and three session days—to act before $20M in federal child care dollars disappears

LANSING—The Michigan League for Public Policy continued its push for greater investment in child care, issuing the following statement on a new research report released today by the Michigan Department of Education-Office of Great Start and Public Sector Consultants, Inc. The statement can be attributed to Michigan League for Public Policy President and CEO Gilda Z. Jacobs. (more…)

Statement: 2017 budget includes big victories and missed opportunities

Alex Rossman

LANSING—The Michigan League for Public Policy issued the following statement on the general omnibus budget bill signed by Governor Rick Snyder today. The League has also put together a full report analyzing the pros and cons of the 2017 budget, The 2017 State Budget Fails to Protect All Children and Families and Perpetuates Economic Disparities. The budget expands Healthy Kids Dental to all eligible kids in Kent, Oakland and Wayne counties, but failed to secure funding to fix the Heat and Eat policy that reduced federal support for many Michigan residents. By investing approximately $3 million in state funds, Michigan would have been able to draw down $140 million in federal dollars through Heat and Eat and restore approximately $76 per month in food assistance for 150,000 low-income households. The statement may be attributed to League President and CEO Gilda Z. Jacobs. (more…)

Oh Michigan!

From the First Tuesday newsletter
Sign up for the newsletter and e-alerts 

‘O’ stands for October — and it also stands for Opportunity.

With just a few short weeks before the Nov. 4 election, now is your best chance as a concerned Michigan citizen to make a difference. (more…)