Rate Increases Implemented in Child Development Division (CDD) Child Care Financial Assistance Program (CC FAP)

25 July 2018

Rates paid to child care providers for child care services delivered to infants and toddlers participating in the Child Care Financial Assistance Program (CC FAP) are increasing significantly on July 22, 2018. Approximately 2000 infants and toddlers and over 1800 families will be impacted by this change which will reduce families’ out of pocket cost for child care. The CC FAP benefit for participating families with infants or toddlers will increase by an average of $2000 annually.

This is the most significant increase in rates In CC FAP since 2010 and brings CC FAP rates for infants and toddlers into alignment with rates charged by Vermont regulated child care providers in 2016. Prior to the increase rates were aligned with rates charged by providers in 2009. The change will increase access to all regulated providers for families with infants and toddlers participating in CC FAP and decrease the burden of co-payments on families. It maintains and magnifies the incentive for families participating in CC FAP to attend higher quality providers and increases incentives for providers to accept CC FAP families and improve quality.

The CC FAP helps eligible families pay for child care so that parents can look for work, retain work or go to school or training. It improves the stability of families while supporting children’s growth and development through participation in high quality early childhood and after school programs.

The CDD/DCF implemented this increase utilizing new federal Child Care and Development Block Grant funds and an increase in state funds approved by the legislature and Governor in the SFY19 budget. The increase was focused on infant and toddler rates because data indicates that access to child care services are most limited for that population in Vermont. There was no increase to CC FAP rates for preschool or school age children participating in CC FAP. The Universal Prekindergarten Tuition voucher (approximately $3500 annually) is an additional resource in Vermont that supports families with preschool children enrolled in high quality early care and learning programs – these resources can be layered by families who need full time child care services.

Increased funding for CC FAP also allows CDD/DCF to adjust the CC FAP Income Eligibility Guidelines from the 2017 Federal Poverty Level to the 2018 Federal Poverty Level in July 2018. This adjustment will impact over 1500 families and increasing the amount of financial assistance they are eligible to receive.