Gov. Walz announces funding to increase access to affordable child care in MN
ST. PAUL, Minn. (KTTC) – Governor Tim Walz visited CLUES in St. Paul Thursday to announce that the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) is awarding nearly $2.5 million to 17 child care organizations representing communities throughout Minnesota.
According to the announcement, this latest round of grant funding will help increase the supply of quality child care providers to support regional economic development.
“In every community across the state, we hear from families and small businesses that increasing access to affordable child care is the best way to support our work force, grow our economy, and foster economic prosperity,” Governor Walz said. “These grants reach communities across our state to help increase child care access and ensure families and our youngest Minnesotans receive the care and early education they deserve.”
The community organizations receiving the grants will use a variety of approaches ranging from partnering with local employers to build new child care facilities, to training and assistance with licensing.
These projects will help grow the supply of affordable, quality childcare in Minnesota.
“We continue to hear that a lack of quality child care is one of the major hurdles preventing the growth of our workforce,” DEED Commissioner Steve Grove said. “This grant program has a direct effect on creating more child care slots for parents across Minnesota. That’s why the Governor’s Council on Economic Expansion recommended increasing this funding as a key strategy in growing our state’s economy and workforce.”
Program funds will be used for child care business startups or expansions, training, facility modifications, direct subsidies or incentives to retain employees, or improvements required for licensing, and assistance with licensing and other regulatory requirements.
Priority was given to communities with a documented shortage of child care providers in their proposed project area.
The definition of documented shortages may include disparities in access to affordable, quality child care among targeted groups including but not limited to rural communities, low-income communities, Black, Indigenous and people of color individuals, persons with disabilities, veterans, and women.
The following organizations received Child Care Economic Development Grants during this latest round of funding:
- Aitkin County, Aitkin, $100,000
- Chinese American Chamber of Commerce, Bloomington, $200,000
- City of Hills, Hills, $120,000
- Cook County and Grand Marais EDA, Grand Marais, $180,000
- Duluth Area Family YMCA, Duluth, $150,000
- Faith Community Development Initiative Inc, Brooklyn Park, $75,000
- Greater Bemidji, Inc, Bemidji, $200,000
- Jasmin Child Care and Preschool, Moorhead, $120,000
- Kandiyohi County and City of Willmar, Willmar, $200,000
- Morning Glory Montessori, Minneapolis, $120,000
- Nobles County Community Service Agency, Worthington, $150,000
- Northland Foundation, Duluth, $250,000
- Northwest Minnesota Foundation, Bemidji, $50,000
- Otter Tail County, Fergus Falls, $160,000
- Somali Community Resettlement Services, Minneapolis, $50,000
- Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation, Owatonna, $200,000
- WildFlower Foundation, Minneapolis, $100,000
Since 2017, DEED has awarded more than $4 million to Minnesota organizations focused on increasing access to affordable, quality child care across Minnesota.
In total, the funding is expected to create 9431 new child care slots across the state.
Find out more and view a funding map on the Child Care Economic Development Grants page on DEED’s website.
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