In order to understand how the August 2016 changes to the Care4Kids program have affected child care providers, the Connecticut Early Childhood Alliance and the Connecticut Association for Human Services recently disseminated an online survey to providers around the state. With a sample size of 191 respondents, our survey offers a snap shot of the experiences of child care providers. The Care4Kids Policy Brief details how child care providers and the families they serve are coping with the substantial cuts to Care4Kids, and how they will fare if funding is not restored to this vital program. The brief also contains the updated July numbers regarding the drop in Care4Kids enrollment since last year and an interactive map of where Care4Kids subsidies were lost.
We appreciate the participation of the child care providers who responded to this survey and hope that this policy brief can be an actionable resource for those who continue to advocate for high-quality early childhood care throughout Connecticut. Please feel free to share this brief within your own networks.
On Monday, with Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman casting the tie-breaking vote, the State Senate narrowly passed the union’s concessions deal that had earlier been accepted by the House. The measure, which was ratified by unionized state employees in July, is projected to save the state $1.5 billion over two years. However, while the concessions outlined in the deal will shore up some of the estimated $5 billion estimated deficit over the next two years, budget uncertainties persist as cuts to some of Connecticut’s crucial human services programs remain on the line.Read more
After months of negotiations, unionized state employees voted to ratify a concessions deal estimated to save the state $1.57 billion over two years, as announced Tuesday morning by the State Employees Bargain Agent Coalition (SEBAC). The concession package, which was negotiated by the administration of Governor Malloy over the course of more than six months, includes a three-year wage freeze, three furlough days and the escalation of employee contributions to health and pension benefits, among other concessions. However, even as a press release from the Governor’s office praised the cooperation of state workers in approving the deal, the future of Connecticut’s budget remains uncertain while some of the state’s essential programs are in jeopardy of being eliminated. Here’s why the concessions agreement does not signal an end to Connecticut’s budget crisis:Read more
Earn Benefits Online: Seeking Partners for an Awesome Tool to Screen and Enroll Clients for Benefits
EarnBenefits Online (EBO) is an easy access web-based tool that allows staff to screen individuals for eligibility for benefits and then populates relevant assistance applications. This greatly simplifies the application process, increasing the participation rate, and facilitating access to the social safety net. This, in turn, stabilizes the lives of clients and enables them to advance financially.
From May 2016 to May 2017, Connecticut continued to lose child care slots for low-income families and children, with more than 5,100 slots lost to cut backs in just one year. Use this interactive map to explore how many slots for Care4Kids were lost in your town and around the state. As this map shows, losses were felt across the state, with some communities harder hit than others as available child care slots continue to dwindle.Read more
The fiscal year ends tomorrow, and Connecticut’s budget situation remains uncertain. Yesterday, all four caucuses and the Governor made statements on Connecticut’s budget. The House Democrats released their own two-year budget proposal, which they would like the General Assembly to hold a vote for on July 18th. Both the House and Senate Republicans want their 2-year budget proposals to be voted on (learn more about those proposals here), and both parties in the Senate stated that they would like to pass a 3-month temporary budget in order to prevent the state from being run unilaterally by Governor Malloy’s executive order (learn more about what a 3-month budget or Governor Malloy’s executive order could look like here). Keep reading to learn more about the House Democrats’ newest budget proposal.
Earlier this month, the legislative session closed without passing a budget. This Saturday, the fiscal year ends and, unless the legislature is able to agree upon and pass a budget, Connecticut will be run by Governor Malloy’s executive order. Governor Malloy has stated that he will not sign any of the budgets the Democrats and Republicans in the House and Senate proposed, as the Republican budget relies larger concessions from the unions than the Governor has negotiated and the Democratic budget “leads with revenue” in the Governor’s view. (Read more about the Democrats’ and Republicans’ proposed budgets here). Yesterday, Governor Malloy released two options for how he will run the state without the legislature passing their own biennial budget: the Executive Order Resource Allocation Plan, which can be enacted without approval of the General Assembly, and a quarterly Mini Budget Resource Allocation Plan, which would need to be passed by the General Assembly. This leaves the legislature with few options. They can create and pass one of they budgets they have already presented (which may be vetoed by the governor), create and pass a new budget, pass continuing resolutions, adopt the Governor’s mini budget, or allow the Governor’s to run the state through his Executive Order Resource Allocation Plan. Keep reading to learn what you need to know about these budget options.
Our partners and friends at CFED have a new name! On June 19, the Corporation for Enterprise Development became Prosperity Now. The name, along with a new website and refreshed brand, is broad enough to encompass all the great work they do, but simple enough to be instantly understandable.
Annie E. Casey National Data Book Release: Solid Gains in Health, Education Require Continued Investment Amid Discussion of Budget Cuts
Today, the Annie E. Casey Foundation released their 2017 Kids Count Data Book. The data book ranks each state's child well-being based upon 16 indicators in four categories: economics, education, health, and family and community. Overall, Connecticut ranked sixth among the states in child well-being, 17th in economic well-being, fourth in education, third in health, and ninth in family and community. Keep reading to learn more about the report. Keep reading to learn more about the data book's release.