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$10 million in funding now available for childcare providers affected by COVID-19

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Posted at 5:04 PM, May 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-12 10:58:47-04

Governor Steve Bullock announced Wednesday,$10 million in federal CARES Act funding is now available to Montana childcare providers to assist with reopening efforts due to COVID-19.

The $10 million dollars is funded through the CARES Act Child Care & Development Block Grant (CCDBG), and is not part of the $1.25 billion Coronavirus Relief Fund allocated to Montana.

“We know many Montana families have been balancing working and caring for children at the same time over the last several weeks and need sustainable and safe childcare options to continue working or to go back to work,” Bullock said. “This funding will provide much-needed financial assistance to providers, as well as support Montana families.”

The block grants will provide funding for existing childcare providers, assistance for low-income families participating in the Best Beginnings Scholarship Program, and emergency temporary childcare for essential workers.

Funding can be used to continue paying staff, increased cleaning or used for other measures to operate safely.

“Childcare providers do an excellent job of ensuring safe and healthy environments for Montana’s children,” Sheila Hogan, Director of the Department of Public Health and Human Services, said. “I appreciate all they do to meet the needs of families in their communities, and I’m hopeful this funding will help them through this unique and challenging time.”

Providers will be able to apply for this assistance through their local Child Care Resource and Referral agencies.

Providers registered to care for up to six children are eligible for a $3,000 emergency payment, group providers for 7-12 children can receive $5,000 and centers licensed for 13 or more children are eligible for $8,000.

More information about the funding, including how to apply, can be found online at BESTBEGINNINGS.MT.GOV .

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