PNS Daily Newscast - November 11, 2019 

Members of Congress take positions ahead of public impeachment hearings; EPA wants to relax coal-ash clean water rules; vets warned to watch for scams; and the good work one Kentucky veteran does.

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Today's Veterans Day; of the 45 current and past presidents, 29 have been veterans. Plus, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez joined Sen. Bernie Sanders in Iowa this weekend for some of the biggest Iowa rallies so far this caucus season, as well as a climate-change summit.

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Report Notes Challenges of Child Care in KY

Advocates are pushing for better ways to help parents navigate the child care system and for more money to help them cover the costs. (Greg Stotelmyer)
Advocates are pushing for better ways to help parents navigate the child care system and for more money to help them cover the costs. (Greg Stotelmyer)
May 16, 2016

FRANKFORT, Ky. - Wading through the paperwork involved in getting government help to pay for child care can be overwhelming to already overworked parents.

A new report by the Center for American Progress looks at how difficult it can be for low-income families to navigate an underfunded child care support system.

The study's author, Judith Warner a Senior Fellow at the Center, says parents who qualify for assistance often aren't given a lot of help navigating the system.

"You're dependent on people who may or may not lose your paperwork, and may or may not want to help you," says Warner. "And if things go wrong, your child loses a stable, good place in child care that brings them so many advantages."

The report, "Jumping Through Hoops and Set Up to Fail," finds in Kentucky, 64 percent of kids under age six have both parents in the workforce, while 40 percent of preschool-age children are currently enrolled in pre-K.

Janet Masterson, executive director of Community Coordinated Child Care in Louisville, says moving to an electronic filing system would help parents overcome an "extremely complicated" system.

"The biggest help would be that families would not have to make multiple visits for multiple eligibility assessments," says Masterson.

The report also takes a state-by-state look at child-care costs with the average price tag for Kentucky parents, with an infant and a four year old, at nearly $12,000 a year.

In March Kentucky raised its reimbursement rate for poor working parents $1 a day per child, the first increase in 10 years.

Masterson says while the increase in the Child Care Assistance Program helps it's still "inadequate."

"Even though the state does use some state resources to match those federal dollars, it's still grossly underfunded," she says. "So, parents are forced to put together patchwork child-care solutions that are often unreliable and of low quality."

The Center for American Progress report recommends more child care funding, including a "High-Quality Child Care Tax Credit," worth up to $14,000 per child, based on family income.

The money would be paid directly to a child care provider chosen by the parents.

Greg Stotelmyer , Public News Service - KY