Governors Proposed Budget Includes Cuts that Are Devastating to Working Families

February 23, 2012 at 12:49 am

Beginning with his State of the State address, Governor Quinn has been talking about the importance of early childhood education.  The fact that his proposed budget includes an additional $20 million dollars for early childhood services and increased budget for education is a continued demonstration of his committment to children in our state. Unfortunately his committment fell short when it comes to working families whose children  are enrolled child care . At first glance, the cuts appeared to be a little over  16 million dollars. However due to union obligations and other costs, program budget  needed much deeper cuts to insure projected  expenditures did not exceed anticipated revenue. Most of these cuts will have a devastating effect on working families who depend on child care assistance to be able to pay  their child care costs.    After attending the IDHS Budget Hearing in Springfield, here is what we can tell you about the proposed budget and program changes;

Increases in line items to meet expected expenditures:

Maintain child care payment cycle     + 18,300,000

Rate Increases for FCC homes    + 21,645 ( there is no increase for centers in the projected budget no rate parity)

If you add these two amounts to the  general revenue cuts proposed by Governor Quinn – IDHS needs to make the following program changes/ cuts.

1) Increase co-pays for parents- IDHS estimates this will save 36,384,100

2) Reduce initial application eligible for the CCAP program from 185% to 150% of Federal Poverty Level- So, to get into the program a family’s income must be  150% or below of the Federal Poverty level. However they can stay in the program until their income exceeds 185%. The estimated savings for this proposed chang is 9,270,700.

3) Implement Upfront registrations an exempt provider would not be able to be paid until a background check is completed and returned showing no findings . While this might seem a good idea to some, background checks currently are taking 6-7 months for processing. This would severely impact parent choice and especially hurt those families who work odd/ non traditional hours and depend on legally licensed exempt care options. Projected savings-4,889,300.

4) Eliminate the Flexible Work Schedule Policy- projected savings 2,625,400

5) Reduce investments in child care quality ( we have not been given specifics of exactly where these cuts will be)   – savings 3,419,200

While this is just the start of the budget process, it is clear that cuts will be evident. In the coming weeks, CCR&R will continue to provide updated  information and work together with families in southern Illinois to prevent these devastating cuts to families.

Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

CCR&R Congratulates Quality Counts Grant Recipients John A Logan College CCR&R has over 350 Gateways to Opportunity Members!


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