KGVO News spoke recently with the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services about the final round of ARPA funds being made available for those who provide child care.

Bureau Chief at DPHHS’ Early Childhood Services Patty Butler provided details on the final opportunity for child care businesses to receive federal funding.

“These stabilization grants came to us in an award through the Child Care Development Fund,” said Butler. “We received $61 million that has been dedicated to child care providers to help stabilize their businesses, and that's been done to an application process.”

In the previous three rounds of ARPA grants, Butler said they received requests from hundreds of child care providers, both large and small.

“We've had over 500 childcare providers apply for that stabilization grant, and there have been four application periods,” she said. “Our latest press release signals the last application period, which opened July 1 and closes at the end of July on the 30th. Most grants are for existing or newly licensed providers, and they're eligible to receive funding for regular operating expenses.”

Butler said there are different grants for small and large-scale childcare providers.

“It does depend on the size,” she said. “There are two different applications, one for smaller program business models and then for larger business models, and the funding is based on the application of the provider. They list their current expenses, their operating expenses, and then we're paying up to 45 percent of those currently operating expenses to help to stabilize their business.”

Butler said this is the final opportunity for child care providers to apply for and receive these ARPA funds.

“That's the reason for the last application period,” she said. “We've had four application periods and left space specifically so that we can obligate these funds by this September and then have the funds expended by next September 2023. The last time to apply for this grant is this application period we're in right now until July 30.”

Click here for more details on how to apply for the ARPA Child Care funds through the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services.

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