The funding from federal CARES Act will support new childcare health, safety protocols and assist closed programs with reopening
The funding available includes:
- $20 million to assist childcare program with reopening and expansion of capacity by providing materials to support a more socially distant model, and for supplies and activities associated with reopening and expansion. This may include partitions, short term rental of space, etc.
- $45 million in childcare Reopening and Expansion Incentive funds to pay for 50% of the cost of a newly opened classroom (maximum grant amount of $6,000) as an incentivize to open the classroom. The temporary funds will phase out over the second and third months as more parents bring their children back into childcare.
Throughout the pandemic, officials say 65% of OCFS-licensed and registered child care programs remained open, many serving families of essential workers. The funding being made available today will help to bring closed programs back to operation to serve families returning to the workplace.
"As we move further into the reopening and more parents go back to work, we're also making sure child care programs across the state have the support they need to reopen safely," Cuomo said. "By providing support for expanded classrooms that allow for more social distancing and other resources, we can help keep staff and children safe."
To be eligible for reopening funds, child care programs must have either been closed as of June 15 and have a plan to reopen within two weeks of applying or currently operating below their licensed capacity and would like to expand. The grants will be pro-rated as programs reach capacity. Programs must submit a detailed plan for use of funds and must remain open at least through the end of the year.
Officials say the maximum awards for the $20 million in Reopening and Restructuring Incentives depend on the size of the program and range from $300 to $1,600 one-time grants. Child care programs may apply to OCFS through July 15.
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