DFS Releases Child Care Spending Plan
In a press release, the Department of Family Services (DFS) released a plan regarding the use of approximately $61 million in one-time federal stimulus dollars for child care services.
Korin Schmidt, DFS Director, said:
"Understanding access to child care is key to family and economic stability, our agency initiated a phased strategy to align the varying federal fund requirements with Wyoming’s specific needs that have been identified by system partners. Our goal is to determine the best way to leverage these dollars for the stabilization and long-term success of the child care sector."
In 2020, DFS received around $8.2 million in federal funding to address the needs of child care providers which were exacerbated by COVID-19, and used those funds to assist in the stabilization of income for child care providers so services could continue.
The additional one-time funding for child care is part of Governor Mark Gordon’s statewide proposal to use federal funds to assist Wyoming with costs incurred from the pandemic.
The DFS plan allocates the federal funds to a variety of different programs, from $4 million given to enhance Child Care Assistance System to around $5 million being used to temporarily increase subsidy rates to 75th percentile to over $24 million given to provide grant funds for eligible childcare providers.
Each of the payouts given are based on a timeline that vary based on where the money is going, however most of the money seems to be given out sometime between either fall 2021 to September 2023 or to September 2024.
The full draft for spending plan can be accessed on the DFS website.