- New analysis shows American families would save thousands of dollars on child care as part of Biden’s spending plan.
- In West Virginia, families could save $ 7,870 each year. In Arizona, they could save $ 9,430 per year.
- But senators from those states are calling for cuts in the size and scope of the reconciliation bill.
The Democrats’ proposed reconciliation bill would pour billions of dollars into “human infrastructure” – social spending meant to expand medicare, eliminate the cost of community colleges and enact paid time off.
A key measure: $ 450 billion for affordable child care and universal pre-kindergarten, a proposal that 127 economists have supported. Under the Democrats’ plan, most families would spend no more than 7% of their income on child care.
However, key moderates like Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Senator Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona said the current price of $ 3.5 trillion was too high. Reducing it means that measures like free community college or affordable child care could be cut or eliminated altogether.
New analysis from the House Education and Labor Committee shows just how much families can save on child care. In every state, a typical family of four with a baby in full-time care would save at least $ 6,000 per year.
Politico reported that Manchin presented his infrastructure proposals in a July document; he wanted $ 1.5 trillion in revenue for the package and said any new spending – like childcare – would have to go through a means test, where a certain eligibility threshold is set . This could prevent some parents from enjoying the benefits of better subsidized child care, including those in the home states of Manchin and Sinema.
In West Virginia, a typical family would save $ 7,870 each year. In Arizona, they would save $ 9,430, or just under $ 10,000 in savings per year. A typical family in Kentucky, the home state of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, would save $ 6,020 each year.
Massachusetts residents would get the biggest break of any state, saving $ 18,750 each year. The report also highlights $ 21,670 in savings for District of Columbia residents, which is likely an outlier due to the city’s cost of living.
A similar analysis from the left-wing Center for American Progress broke down how much families earning 135% of their state’s median income would pay in child care expenses; these could be families potentially excluded by the Manchin means test, if childcare subsidies only apply to low-income families.
In West Virginia, families pay around $ 198 per week for child care under current policy, Insider’s Madison Hoff reports. According to Biden’s proposal, that cost would be cut by more than half, with families in West Virginia saving $ 103 per week. It’s a similar story in Arizona, where families currently spend $ 236 per week on child care. They would save $ 126 per week with the proposed new expenses.
Once again, Massachusetts residents would rack up the most savings, with costs dropping from $ 436 to $ 182 per week.
Right now, Democrats are locked into an within-party negotiation over how big their party line package should be. Progressives had previously called for even more spending, working with Senate Democrats to craft the $ 3.5 trillion package over the summer. Now, as the moderates pull back and Biden steps in, it could be reduced to around $ 2 trillion.