Friday, December 2, 2022

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Group wants rollbacks of some IA voting restrictions; RSV, Flu, COVID: KY faces "Triple Threat" this winter; Appeals court halts special master review of documents seized at Mar-a-Lago.

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The Senate passes a bill forcing a labor agreement in an effort to avoid a costly railway worker strike. The House Ways and Means Committee has former President Trump's tax returns in hand. The Agriculture Committee is looking at possible regulations for cryptocurrency following the collapse of cryptocurrency giant FTX. The Supreme Court will be reviewing the legality of Biden s student debt relief program next year. Anti-semitic comments from Ye spark the deletion of tweets from the the House Judiciary Committee GOP's Twitter account.

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The first-ever "trout-safe" certification goes to an Idaho fish farm, the Healthy Housing Initiative helps improve rural communities' livability, and if Oklahoma is calling to you, a new database makes it easier for buyers and builders to find available lots.

NM Families Start School Year with Extra Money for Child Care

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Monday, August 2, 2021   

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - Pandemic fallout still has U.S. states clawing their way back to normalcy, and New Mexico believes its decision to provide more child care assistance will help families and the economy recover faster.

An expansion that basically doubles eligibility for child care financial assistance was announced by the governor last month. It sets aside about $320 million from the American Rescue Plan for child care assistance, and overhauls how day care and preschool providers are reimbursed.

Amber Wallin - deputy director with the group New Mexico Voices for Children - said it's a game-changer for the state's youngest children, and the workers who care for them.

"This is going to mean that about 20,000 more families will now see crucial relief in affording the enormous costs of high-quality child care," said Wallin.

As of July 1, families who earn up to 350% of the federal poverty level - that's about $93,000 a year for a family of four, up from $54,000 - are now eligible for child care aid.

Teachers and school staff in Albuquerque return to classrooms this Wednesday, with students set to begin classes the following Wednesday.

New Mexico's allocation of federal pandemic-relief money to help middle-class families pay for child care is the largest of any state in the nation, according to research by the Associated Press.

Wallin noted that families of color were especially hard-hit by school closures and other economic impacts from the pandemic and now, should have more peace of mind.

"They're able to better afford housing needs and ensure they can buy their kids back-to-school clothes," said Wallin. "But also it's helping them go back to work, afford necessities and helping our economy get back on track as well."

In November 2022, New Mexico voters will be asked to approve a constitutional amendment to increase withdrawals from the Land Grand Permanent Fund. Much of the revenue would fund childhood services, with the rest directed to K-12 public schools.



Disclosure: New Mexico Voices for Children/KIDS COUNT contributes to our fund for reporting on Budget Policy & Priorities, Early Childhood Education, Human Rights/Racial Justice, Poverty Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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