COVID relief package includes about $40 billion in child care funding
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On Tuesday, the House is set to start consideration of the $1.9 trillion COVID relief package the Senate passed over the weekend. It contains about $40 billion in funding for child care.
Nearly $15 billion would help fund child care for low-income families, and about $24 billion would go to child care providers to help cover operating expenses.
“That includes rent, utilities. It includes all of the types of payments that providers have to make to stay open,” said Rhian Allvin, CEO of the National Association for the Education of Young Children.
She said this funding will be essential for child care providers who operate on thin margins.
“A provider is able to stay open based on the provider’s ability to maintain really high enrollment,” Allvin said. “And that is the part of the system that flipped upside down when COVID hit.”
Many providers have closed, at least temporarily, or gone into debt, said Christine Johnson-Staub at the Center for Law and Social Policy.
“We were at risk of really losing a large portion of our child care capacity,” Johnson-Staub said.
This money, she said, would help stabilize child care programs and make the system stronger going forward.
COVID-19 Economy FAQs
Can businesses deny you entry if you don’t have a vaccine passport?
As more Americans get vaccinated against COVID-19 and the economy begins reopening, some businesses are requiring proof of vaccination to enter their premises. The concept of a vaccine passport has raised ethical questions about data privacy and potential discrimination against the unvaccinated. However, legal experts say businesses have the right to deny entrance to those who can’t show proof.
Give me a snapshot of the labor market in the U.S.
U.S. job openings in February increased more than expected, according to the Labor Department. Also, the economy added over 900,000 jobs in March. For all of the good jobs news recently, there are still nearly 10 million people who are out of work, and more than 4 million of them have been unemployed for six months or longer. “So we still have a very long way to go until we get a full recovery,” said Elise Gould with the Economic Policy Institute. She said the industries that have the furthest to go are the ones you’d expect: “leisure and hospitality, accommodations, food services, restaurants” and the public sector, especially in education.
What do I need to know about tax season this year?
Glad you asked! We have a whole separate FAQ section on that. Some quick hits: The deadline has been extended from April 15 to May 17 for individuals. Also, millions of people received unemployment benefits in 2020 — up to $10,200 of which will now be tax-free for those with an adjusted gross income of less than $150,000. And, for those who filed before the American Rescue Plan passed, simply put, you do not need to file an amended return at the moment. Find answers to the rest of your questions here.
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