April 20, 2021 3:20 a.m.

Congressman Peter DeFazio has announced over $404 million in American Rescue Plan funding for Oregon childcare providers that he says will help them open safely, keep workers on the payroll and lower costs for hardworking families.

DeFazio said, “Oregon’s parents and childcare providers alike are facing unprecedented challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic”. He said legislation includes the largest investment in childcare assistance in the United States since World War II. DeFazio said the funds will not only allow childcare businesses to remain open but will ease working parent’s struggles as they begin to go back to the office.

A release said the funding comes as part of two programs created through the American Rescue Plan, which DeFazio strongly supported.

*Nearly $249 million from the childcare stabilization fund to help childcare providers to reopen or stay open, provide safe and healthy environments, keep workers on the payroll and provide mental health supports for educators and children

*Over $155 million in more flexible funding for Oregon to make childcare more affordable for more families, increase access to high-quality care for families receiving subsidies, increase compensation for early childhood workers and meet other care needs in the state.

DeFazio said the funding will go to the state, which will allocate it to specific providers and families.