Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and Early Childhood Education and Care Department Secretary Elizabeth Groginsky announced earlier this month that, through funding from the federal American Rescue Plan, the state will expand who qualifies for early child care assistance.

Micah McCoy, ECECD communications director, told NM Political Report that the income requirement for state assistance for early childcare is currently 200 percent of the federal poverty level. For a family of four, that equals about $53,000 a year, he said.

He said that for quality childcare, a parent could pay, potentially, as much as $2,000 a month for two children. Under the current cut off, a family of four that earned $55,000 a year wouldn’t be eligible for state assistance and likely wouldn’t be able to afford $2,000 a month, he said.

“Parents drop out of the workforce or cobble something together bouncing around with grandma and a friend’s house or a lower quality child care situation,” McCoy said.

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