Call to Action: ACF Releases Racial Equity Information Memorandum

On Thursday, February 4, 2022, HHS held a session on their new Racial Equity initiative. Debra Johnson the Deputy Assistant Secretary for External Affairs at HHS started the call by advocating for the nation to build a more just system that promotes fairness. She also outlines her agency's commitment to advancing racial equity. The next

FY 2022 Appropriations Update: Still Working on It

Discussions and negotiations continued between the top four appropriators on an agreement to complete action on the current federal fiscal year 2022.  Public comments were reserved but positive.  The one item that seemed certain is that there will be at least one more CR once the current one expires on February 18.  If a deal

Two Programs Added to Families First Approved List

On January 25, 2022, three new programs were rated and two were approved for federal funding under by the Title IV-E Prevention Services Clearinghouse Youth Villages’ Intercept® becomes one of only 12 programs to earn the well-supported distinction from the Clearinghouse, the top category out of three allowing states to spend without bumping into any spending

Final ACA Numbers In

On Thursday, January 27, 2022, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the final numbers for the ACA sign-up for the coming year with a final record total of 14.5 million people have signing up.  Open enrollment for the federal marketplace ran from November 1, 2021, through January 15, 2022.  CMS indicated that

CMS Taking Application on $49 Million to Reduce Uninsured Rate Among Children

On Thursday January 27, 2022, CMS announced the availability of $49 million to fund organizations that can connect more eligible children, parents, and pregnant individuals to health care coverage through Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Awardees—including state/local governments, tribal organizations, federal health safety net organizations, non-profits, schools, and others—will receive up to $1.5

Children’s Bureau: National Call to Action on Racial Equity

Save the date for February 3, 2022, 2:00 PM EST, for a live event by the Children’s Bureau when they release an information memorandum (IM) “Equity in Action.” The IM covers: The impact of racism on poverty and the well-being of children and families. The need for comprehensive action to address structural racism within policies

President Opens Door to Revamped BBB

Marking the first year of his term in office, President Biden held a nearly two-hour press conference on Wednesday, January 19, 2022, that touched on everything including the possibility of a revamped Build Back Better reconciliation bill. Since last December when Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) pulled his support for the $1.7 trillion package, talks have

Appropriation Update

Discussions continued between key appropriations leaders, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL), Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) and Congresswoman Kay Granger (R-TX).  Not much has been revealed but Chairperson DeLauro offered some broad positive comments about progress.  Like the reconciliation, Democratic leaders including the White House would like a final deal by March 1.

CTC Kept 3.7 Million Children out of Poverty in December

On January 18th, Columbia University’s Center on Poverty and Social Policy released its newest policy brief detailing the impact of the Child Tax Credit, announcing that the sixth payment kept 3.7 million children out of poverty in the final month of 2021. Researchers at Columbia University have tracked the impact of the CTC over time

Houses Focus on Voting Rights, Appropriations

The Senate continued to debate how to address voting rights including how to deal with the Senate filibuster while the House focused some attention on the appropriations for the current fiscal year, FY 2022. Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY) maneuvered to bring a version of voting rights to the floor for debate by using

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