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Published April 08, 2013, 08:28 PM

Lawmakers ask for childcare funding

Before this legislative session childcare was a top priority among North Dakotans. But now, several lawmakers and those in the childcare sector say the legislature isn't listening.

Before this legislative session childcare was a top priority among North Dakotans. But now, several lawmakers and those in the childcare sector say the legislature isn't listening.

House Bill 1422 was designed to stabilize childcare and to recruit and retain providers. It also included funds for special needs. The bill started with 15 million dollars in funding, and is now at 2.6 million. Today lawmakers and those in the childcare industry asked the Senate Appropriations to restore some funding, to include at least 6 million.

Rep. Kathy Hawken (R) Fargo: "For some reason, we can subsidize operations in other areas, we do it in nursing homes, we do it for business start ups, rennaissance zones. We do it for a number of things, but for some reason, we can not get over the thought of doing it for childcare."

The Senate Appropriations is also reviewing a bill for pre-k funding. The bill would allow 2.6 million dollars in grants for schools starting early childhood education programs.

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