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2017 Budget Path Uncertain Pending Election

Nearly a month in the new fiscal year the fate of the FY 2017 budget is anything but certain.  When the Congress returns on November 14, they must act on 11 of the 12 appropriations bills.  Military Construction, separate from defense appropriations, is the only appropriations bill signed into law. Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WS) has

Hear It Now: A Fateful Turn on Child Care

Recently National Public Radio (NPR) ran a report on a fateful turn in the history of this nation’s child care system dating back to the early 1970s.  The story outlines how close we came to a universal child care system.  Close enough for a Democratic Congress to pass in 1971 a system of care that

Key States in Families First Act Debate Have Big Investment In State Funds

For the states that raised objections to parts of the Families First Act, specifically California, New York, Texas and Wyoming, the Child Trends survey gives some perspective. California and New York which raised serious concerns over the re-structuring both draw-down and spend significant amounts on child welfare.   In 2014 California spent slightly more than $4

Speaker Talks Reconciliation, Freshman Seek Changes to Budget and Entitlements

In the past week two discussions were taking place across the two houses of Congress that could dramatically effect budgets, entitlements and policies. In comments made at his regular press briefing, Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WS) made clear that he intends to use the budget reconciliation to adopt his conservative agenda if Donald Trump is President

Families First Act, Now What?

There was no vote on the Family First Prevention Services Act, (HR 5456, Conference Report 114-628) as Congress finished a budget deal last week Wednesday.  As a result, the bill still remains in the same place.  That means that it could be finished or dead for this Congress.  There could be one more run at

Congress Adopts CR, Finished Until After Election

Congress adopted a continuing resolution that will provide temporary FY ’17 funding to December 9.  The CR was passed on Wednesday, September 28 and Congress adjourned until the November elections. The action came after a deal was struck on providing $170 million for Flint drinking water crisis.  The Flint funding will not be adopted until

HHS Publishes New Child Care Regulations

The Administration on Children and Families has now issued final regulations on the Child Care and Development Block Grant, CCDBG.  The regulations are a result of the 2014 reauthorization of the CCDBG. Based on the numerous changes in that 2014 law, the regulations strengthen health and safety requirements, increase and stabilize access, takes steps to improve

Congress Now In Race To Budget Deadline

After weeks of Congressional dreams of an early departure, Congress is now in a race to make sure the government does not shut down on October 1. No one is really expecting a shutdown but the process has gone on for weeks after leaders had floated the possibility of an early departure.  On Thursday, September

Shrinking Spending For Children, Child Welfare: 2 Percent of 10 Percent

On Tuesday, September 20, the Urban Institute was the scene for a discussion of the 10th annual report on how federal spending for children’s programs is doing in Washington DC budgeting. The Kids Share  Report and a panel discussion that accompanied the release of the report suggests that children are not doing well, at least