Monroe County Day Care Subsidies

If you live in Monroe County, you have probably heard about, read about or been personally impacted by the reduction in county day care subsidies from New York State. While this topic and its effects may be somewhat confusing for anyone who does not have children or is not a part of the early childhood community, the impact is wide reaching.

Starting Sept.1, the state will lower the county's eligibility threshold for child care subsidies from 165 percent to 125 percent of the poverty rate. These subsidies make it possible for families who do not qualify for welfare to work even though they struggle to make enough money to pay for child care. Most affected parents were notified of the change in letters they received Aug. 15.

If you utilize childcare in any form you would probably agree that the 16 days allotted by the state for affected families to find care is far from ample. Finding quality childcare is often a time consuming process that involves wait lists, obtaining copies of vaccination records and a deposit to secure your spot. I started looking for childcare for my child- who will be born in a few months- 3 months in to my pregnancy and even then encountered wait lists, some of which were over a year long.

For an issue that may determine whether or not a parent will be able to keep their job and/or current working hours, the state was insensitive in his handling of this funding cut. Today's Democrat & Chronicle ran an article titled Rochester YMCA Offers 2-Month Child Care Funding Extension to Those Affected by State Cuts. Kudos to the Rochester YMCA for stepping up to help families!



Monroe County, not the

Monroe County, not the State, lowered the income eligibility threshold from 165% to 125%. The State does not set those rates, only the County does and they were not mandated to do so. If they so chose, the County could have kept the eligibility threshold at 165%, but the County Executive chose not to. Of course they would have had to raise the funds from somewhere, but that's another matter all together.