State reimbursement for child care falling behind

Posted Monday, November 18, 2013 --- 9:58 a.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- A new report says the state program that helps low-income families with child care services hasn't kept up with the current cost of living.

The Wisconsin Council on Children & Families blames the shortfall on a seven-year freeze in state reimbursement rates to child care centers that participate in the subsidy program, called Wisconsin Shares.

The analysis found the state reimbursement rate, which includes a co-payment from the parent, does not cover what the market is charging to care for the child in about 77 percent of the cases.

Department of Children and Families spokesman Joe Scialfa tells the State Journal the rate freeze was lifted in the 2013-15 state budget. He says select providers in 18 counties already have had their reimbursement rates increased.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press

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