Judge Issues Temporary Stay To Extend Subsidy for Child Care Program
On Friday, Alameda Superior Court Judge Wynne Carvill granted a stay to temporarily extend California's subsidy for child care services at least until Nov. 23, the San Jose Mercury News reports.
When Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) signed California's budget package on Oct. 8, he used line-item vetoes to cut about $256 million from the child care program for beneficiaries of CalWORKS, California's welfare-to-work program (Murphy, San Jose Mercury News, 11/5).
The governor's line-item vetoes, which reduced state spending by almost $1 billion, also targeted funding for:
- Community health clinics;
- HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment programs; and
- Mental health services for special education students (California Healthline, 11/1).
Carvill's ruling comes in response to a lawsuit filed by numerous child care advocates who claimed the California Department of Education failed to notify parents about other child care options after the budget cuts (San Jose Mercury News, 11/5).
In his ruling, Carvill ordered the state to notify affected families that they can receive eligibility screenings for alternative child care subsidies. The temporary stay will remain in place until Nov. 23, when the court will hear further arguments from the child care advocates (Espinoza, Santa Rosa Press Democrat, 11/5).
The judge's decision affects an estimated 54,000 children who were slated to lose the child care benefits on Monday (San Jose Mercury News, 11/5).
Assistance From Assembly, First 5
On Friday, Democratic legislators said they had secured $40 million to help fund the CalWORKS child care program through January. The funds include $6 million from reductions to the Assembly's operating budget and $34 million from county First 5 commissions.
First 5 administers proceeds from a state tobacco tax to support health care and education programs for children younger than ageÂ five (Ferriss, Sacramento Bee, 11/6).
Some of the county First 5 commissions that contributed to this year's assistance forÂ CalWORKS child care program include:
- First 5 Los Angeles, which approved up to $15 million to help restore the child care subsidy (California Healthline, 10/29);
- First 5 Nevada County, which approved a loan of up to $50,000 (Rindels, Union of Grass Valley, 11/8);
- First 5 San Diego, which approved $2.25 million in bridge funding (First 5 San Diego release, 11/5);
- First 5 San Joaquin County which approved a $553,000 loan (Torres, Stockton Record, 11/6);
- First 5 San Mateo County, which approved $705,000 in transitional funding (First 5 San Mateo County release, 11/5); and
- First 5 Solano County, which approved a $761,902 loan (Contra Costa Times, 11/5).
Last year, First 5 allocated $81 million to help restore the governor's cuts to Healthy Families, the state's Children's Health Insurance Program (California Healthline, 10/29).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.