You can get an overview of how this program works on the Child Care Program Stabilization overview page. But if you’d like more details, explore the FAQs below.
Looking for information about round 1 of our program stabilization funding? See our archived questions and answers.
About the program
The federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) allocated funds to Connecticut to support the operations of child care programs and businesses to help stabilize the field. OEC has been distributing these funds to all licensed and license-exempt DCEX programs.
While the first round of the program ended in 2021, OEC will soon offer a second round of funding to all programs that previously received funds.
What programs were eligible for the first round of payments?
Eligible programs had to be:
- A licensed family child care home (DCFH), group home (DCGH), center (DCCC), or license-exempt center-based or school-based program eligible to receive C4K benefits (DCEX); and
- Currently open — or those that can verify that they will be reopening and serving children (children will be in attendance) within 30 days of submission of your application
What programs are eligible for the second round of payments?
All child care providers who applied for and received the first round of child care stabilization funding are automatically eligible to apply for this next round of stabilization funding.
If I am a child care provider and I do not currently have children enrolled, am I eligible to apply for the second round of Child Care Program Stabilization Funding?
Yes, but you must open and be serving children within 30 days of submission of your application. If you need assistance on efforts to help increase enrollment, you can call the Women’s Business Development Council at 203-751-9550 ext. 113 or email email@example.com.
Are programs that are faith-based tax-exempt eligible to apply for the second round of funding?
Yes — as long as they applied and received the first round of stabilization funding.
Can I apply if I have a pending application for a CT child care license?
No. You must have been fully licensed by May 1, 2021 to be eligible for Child Care Program Stabilization Funding.
Can a program apply for the second round of Child Care Program Stabilization Funding if they have an open case in any legal and/or enforcement actions?
Can a program that has had its license revoked apply for the second round of funding?
Am I eligible for a second round of Child Care Program Stabilization Funding if my program is currently closed?
Yes, as long as it is a temporary closure (due to COVID-19) and your program received the first round of funding. You will need to attest that your program will be open and serving children within 30 days of submission of your application. If your program is open and operates for the school-year only and is closed for the summer, your program is still eligible.
How to apply
How does a program apply for the second round of Child Care Program Stabilization Funding?
We expect the application to be ready to launch in late March, so please watch for an email from firstname.lastname@example.org. You will then complete a brief application and attestation for each license number, as you did last time. Applications are not accessible online, but snap shots of the application are available.
Will an application be available in Spanish?
We won’t have a separate application in Spanish. However, we plan to provide screenshots of the application translated into Spanish to help people who apply. 2-1-1 Child Care also has Spanish speaking staff available to help — call 1-800-505-1000 for support.
We are a multi-site organization. Do we apply as one organization or for each site?
Each individual site will receive an email inviting an application. Please do not share the email invitation. Each site should complete its own application.
What do I do if my program did not get an application through email?
If you believe your program is eligible and did not receive an application for the second round of funding, please call 2-1-1 Child Care at 1-800-505-1000 or email email@example.com. Be sure to have your license number or licensed-exempt number handy to expedite assistance.
What terms will I need to agree to receive for the Child Care Program Stabilization Funding?
How much will my program receive from the second round of Child Care Program Stabilization Funding?
For round 2 of funding, child care programs will receive 50% of one of their payments (not including the staff compensation payment) received in the first round.
Here are a few examples.
|Payments 1, 2 & 3||Staff Compensation||Total||This Payment (50% of A)|
|Payments 1, 2 & 3||Staff Compensation||Total||This Payment (50% of A)|
How will my program receive payments from the Child Care Program Stabilization Funding?
The funds for the second round will arrive as soon as possible after we receive your application. It usually takes about 4 weeks.
A program may apply to receive the Child Care Program Stabilization Funding by direct deposit to the program’s business account through the Office of the State Comptroller. If you choose not to receive by direct deposit, a paper check will be mailed to the address provided on the application. It is important for the program to keep records for tax filing and other purposes. Learn more about setting up direct deposit with the Office of the State Comptroller.
What documentation should be kept for auditing and/or tax purposes and for how long?
Supporting documentation must be retained for a period of 3 years and promptly submitted to OEC upon request. Supporting documentation may include:
- Program records and supporting documentation related to this application
- Documentation to verify attendance of children and/or hours of care provided outside of business hours
- Expenditure records and supporting documentation related to costs incurred and how program funding was spent, including but not limited to:
- Mortgage/rent/space cost statements
- Utility statements
- Payroll and benefits records
- Original invoices and/or receipts for purchases of materials/supplies
- Documentation of other benefits provided to child care staff members such as coverage of insurance costs or tuition reimbursement.
We are a multi-site program — will we receive payment in one pay or by site?
If the payment will be issued by check, one check may be cut for all sites, however, it will be broken down by license number in the memo section of the check. If being paid by direct deposit, one deposit may be made into the account and a spreadsheet will be emailed to the address on file separating out the amount of payment per license number.
Is the Child Care Program Stabilization Funding taxable?
Yes, if you are a for-profit organization this funding is taxable. If you are a non-profit or not-for-profit organization, this funding is tax exempt. All organizations receiving funding must report this as income to your program. As with all funding, child care providers are responsible for tracking how funds were used. This includes being sure funds from different sources/opportunities do not pay for the same things. If you need support you can call the Women’s Business Development Council at 203-751-9550 x113 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Is this a loan that needs to be paid back?
This is not a loan. These funds are provided to stabilize the continued operations of the program and to cover business expenses in response to COVID-19. However, you must report this as income to your program and pay taxes on it.
How quickly does a program need to spend the Child Care Program Stabilization Funding?
A program should deposit the check(s) as soon as they are received. All funds must be spent by September, 2023 whether they are received through direct deposit or check.
What if my program closes after I have received the stabilization funding?
If your program closes, you must return any unspent funds. In order to accept the funds, the program should be serving children or have all the necessary confirmations to reopen, and serve children within 30 days of submission of your application. This plan supports the business in staying open. When a program closes they must notify the OEC’s Division of Child Care Licensing to close the license.
Using your funds
What are the allowable uses of the Child Care Program Stabilization Funding?
The funds are to help your program remain open by supporting operating and business expenses. Programs must keep records of how they have spent the funds. Funds cannot be used for personal expenses.
Child care providers may use these funds for the following purposes, including for reimbursement of expenses incurred from January, 2020 through September, 2023:
- Personnel costs, including payroll and salaries or similar compensation for an employee (including any sole proprietor or independent contractor), and benefits
- Premium pay, or costs for employee recruitment and retention, including but not limited to staff bonuses, wage increases, costs of insurance coverage, retirement, educational advancement, tuition reimbursement and child care costs
- Rent (including under a lease agreement) or payment on any mortgage obligation, utilities, or insurance
- Facility maintenance or improvements, including outdoor learning spaces/playgrounds
- Personal protective equipment, cleaning and sanitization supplies and services, or training and professional development related to health and safety practices
- Purchases of or updates to equipment and supplies to respond to COVID–19
- Goods and services necessary to maintain or resume child care services
- Mental health supports for children and employees
- Health and safety trainings for staff, including but not limited to CPR, First Aid, and medication administration
What documentation will the program need to provide regarding the use of the Child Care Stabilization Funds?
All receipts of payments towards business expenses should be retained for your records and for auditing purposes.