July 29, 2020

Luján Votes for Legislation to Bolster Child Care During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.), the U.S. House Assistant Speaker, voted for legislation to invest in child care and support workers and the economy by improving access to child care during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“Access to safe, quality, and affordable child care is crucial to the wellbeing of our families and our economic recovery. Today, I was proud to vote for two important bills to address this crisis, bolster investments in child care, and provide much-needed support for child care providers across New Mexico,” said Luján. “Children and families need the full support of the federal government during these challenging times, and I will continue working toward meaningful solutions.”  

BACKGROUND 

The Child Care is Essential Act would create a $50 billion Child Care Stabilization Fund so that providers across New Mexico have the resources they need to operate and families can return to work knowing their children are in safe hands. Without support from the federal government, New Mexico could lose 16,122 licensed child care slots, approximately 29% of the state’s child care supply. The $428,276,050 that New Mexico would receive from this legislation would help child care providers stay open or reopen safely, provide education and health services critical to young children’s development, and ensure essential workers and families have the ability to return to work.  

The Child Care for Economic Recovery Act would strengthen tax benefits for working families with children and dependent adults, including by making the Child Care and Dependent Tax Credit (CCDTC) fully refundable so lower-earning families can benefit and doubling the amount of child care expenses that are eligible for the credit (to $6,000 per dependent or $12,000 for two or more dependents). Currently in NM-03, about 23% of tax filers with children are low-income, but only about 3% owe enough taxes to benefit from the CCDTC. This bill would greatly benefit New Mexicans earning less than $150,000 by making the tax credit fully refundable and increasing its income limits. The legislation also provides business tax credits to support domestic workers and child care providers affected by COVID-19 shutdowns, and it includes more funding for child care safety and dependent care assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Press Contact

Adán Serna (202) 225-6190