October 8, 2021

City of Pittsburgh Council Supports ARPA Funding for Child Care

On September 28, 2021, the City of Pittsburgh Council unanimously approved a Will of Council introduced by Councilwoman Deb Gross to support the stabilization of child care through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Funds.

Will of Council

Following the state’s announcement of the availability of the ARPA stabilization grants, the council applauded Governor Tom Wolf’s administration on the opening of the grant application to get money directly into the hands of the providers. The Will of Council further calls upon the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the administration of Governor Wolf to release details about the disbursement of the remaining $400+ million in ARPA discretionary child care funding, and to quickly release these funds. Doing so will support child care providers, and families who have been adversely affected by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. 

Both announcements follow the release of survey results from Start Strong PA, a statewide child care advocacy campaign. The results indicated a child care workforce staffing crisis from 92% of respondents, contributing to the decreased availability of more than 34,000 early learning slots for children. With ARPA, providers can use the stabilization grants to support personnel costs such as wages and recruitment/retention bonuses. Additionally, the Will of Council calls on the state to reinstate the Education and Retention Award with improvements to support equity.

While the ARPA stabilization grants are a critical first step, child care providers need continued relief funds, as well as longer term solutions to solve the child care crisis. 

Read the full Will of Council online.

Child Care Professionals and infants and toddlers pose with Trying Togehter t-shirts on.