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Early Childhood Care & Education

Victories in Early Childhood Care & Education

Ensuring all families have access to quality public education for their children is a part of the ‘social contract’ that exists between its people and the state. Every child attending public school should receive an education that will prepare them for opportunity and success in the future.. Learn more.

2019: LB 160 – Introduced by Senator Dan Quick​

Intent: LB160 is to amend the Local Option Municipal Economic Development Act by redefining economic development program to include early childhood infrastructure development for cities of the first and second class and villages. Early childhood infrastructure development pertains to early childhood education programs of recognized quality, as determined by the quality rating criteria provided under the Step Up to Quality Child Care Act.

Outcome: Passed 36-7-6 (May 15, 2019)

2019: LB 590 – Introduced by Senator Briese​

Intent: LB 590 seeks to streamline the process by which Department of Health and Human Services staff verify the training and credentials of licensed childcare providers by utilizing an existing Department of Education database called the Nebraska Early Childhood Professional Record System.

OUTCOME: Passed 48-0-1 (April 11, 2019)

2016: LB 1066 – Introduced by Senator Sullivan and Prioritized by the Education Committee

Intent: LB 1066 includes provisions of LB 1004, introduced by Senator Cook, to help schools and school districts in Nebraska to implement the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP), at their option. CEP allows schools in high-poverty areas to feed all their students school meals without charge, and without the need for a meal application.

OUTCOME: Passed 44-0-5 (April 7, 2016)

2017: LB 335, AM 703 – Introduced by Senator Krist​

Intent: LB 335, AM 703 limits the existing childcare market rate to no less than the 50th percentile or the rate for the immediately preceding fiscal year starting on July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2019.

OUTCOME: Passed 27-14-6-2 (March 21, 2017)

2017: LB 335 –Introduced by Senator Riepe at the request of the Governor​

Intent: LB 889 creates the School Readiness Tax Credit Act, a series of tiered tax credits relating to early childhood education. LB 889 as amended proposes two categories of credits that would become effective on or after January 1, 2017: a credit for early childhood programs and a credit for the early childhood workforce. The tax credits in LB 889 would be directly aligned with Nebraska’s Step Up to Quality program that is administered by the Nebraska Department of Education in coordination with the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.

OUTCOME: Passed 42-5-2 (April 12, 2016)

2015: LB 81 – Introduced and Prioritized by Senator Cook ​

Intent: LB 81 aligns ongoing eligibility for the federal Child Care Subsidy program with the Aid to Dependent Children program. If a family’s income at redetermination for eligibility exceeds 140% of the federal poverty level (FPL), the family will continue to receive transitional childcare for up to 24 consecutive months or until the family income exceeds 185% FPL. If a family’s income falls to 140% FPL or below, the 24-month time limit will not apply until the family becomes eligible for transitional childcare assistance. The bill provides that recipients of the federal childcare subsidy program may be required to contribute a percentage of their gross income as a cost-share for participation in the program.

OUTCOME: Passed 47-0-2 (May 21, 2015)

2015: LB 547 – Introduced by Senator Campbell; Speaker Priority Bill​

Intent: LB 547 changed provisions of the Quality Child Care Act. The new federal Child Care and Development Fund regulations require states to establish an overall 8% increase in spending of the federal block grant on quality early childhood initiatives. This increase will be allocated among the Step Up to Quality and Sixpence programs. LB 547 also included provisions from LB 489, to allow school districts and childcare providers to partner to receive grants funded by the Sixpence Early Learning Fund. Participating childcare providers must collaborate with the school district, enroll in Nebraska’s Step Up to Quality program, and achieve a Step 3 quality rating within three years of receiving such grant.

OUTCOME: Passed 42-0-7 (May, 21, 2015)