DES MOINES) — On Wednesday, February 10, the Iowa House of Representatives passed six bills to help address the child care crisis in Iowa from many angles. This package of legislation aims to expand access to quality and affordable child care across Iowa.
Leaders from business groups across Iowa praised the Iowa House’s floor action on Wednesday:
“Access to high quality, affordable child care has never been more important to Iowans. As the state continues to emerge from the pandemic, the recent legislation that was overwhelmingly passed by the Iowa House will increase access and create more opportunities for child care providers throughout Iowa. As businesses look to expand and hire more Iowans, expanded options and opportunities around child care is a critical part of workforce development.” – Joe Murphy, Iowa Business Council
“Child care is a workforce development issue that has become critical across the state for business. We appreciate the House working in a bipartisan fashion to try to impact this with a variety of tools.” – Dustin Miller, Iowa Chamber Alliance
“ABI members could not be more pleased with the focus Iowa House Republicans are placing on the important workforce issue of childcare in Iowa. ABI shares the goals of addressing childcare affordability and availability that are important to our member company employees.” – JD Davis,Iowa Association of Business and Industry
The following are the child care bills that passed the Iowa House on Wednesday:
HF 230 – Increases the income threshold for a Child Care Tax Credit from $45,000 to $90,000.
HF 370 – Creates an incentive for employers to provide child care for their employees by providing a tax credit up to $150,000.
HF 260 – Allows individuals providing child care in their homes to take care of 6 or fewer children, an increase from 5 or fewer.
HF 292 – Raises Iowa’s child care rates to the 50th percentile according to the Market Rate Survey.
HF 302– Creates an “off-ramp” from Child Care Assistance program so parents can continue to grow in their career without losing their child care assistance entirely, all at once.
HF 301 – Creates a fund to provide child care workforce grants on a dollar for dollar matching basis from communities. These programs will help move child care providers up the pay scale and the education pathway.