IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
March 22, 2020
Mrs. Shaheen (for herself, Ms. Baldwin, Ms. Hassan, Ms. Harris, Mr. Reed, and Mr. Durbin) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Finance
To provide State funding to ensure that essential workers can access child care.
This Act may be cited as the
Helping Health Care Workers Afford Child and Elder Care Act.
State funding to ensure that essential workers can access child care
Increase in funding
The amount specified in subsection (c) of section 2003 of the Social Security Act for purposes of subsections (a) and (b) of such section is deemed to be $6,700,000,000 for fiscal year 2020, of which $5,000,000,000 shall be obligated by States during calendar year 2020 in accordance with subsection (b) of this section.
Out of any money in the Treasury of the United States not otherwise appropriated, there are appropriated $5,000,000,000 for fiscal year 2020 to carry out this section.
Rules governing use of additional funds
Funds are used in accordance with this subsection if—
the funds are used for—
child care services for a child of an essential worker; or
daytime care services or other adult protective services for an individual who—
is a dependent, or a member of the household of, an essential worker; and
requires the services;
the funds are provided to reimburse an essential worker for the cost of obtaining the services (including child care services obtained on or after the date the Secretary of Health and Human Services declared a public health emergency pursuant to section 319 of the Public Health Service Act on January 31, 2020, entitled
Determination that a Public Health Emergency Exists Nationwide as the Result of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus), to a provider of child care services, or to establish a temporary child care facility operated by a State or local government;
eligibility for the funds or services, and the amount of funds or services provided, is not conditioned on a means test;
the funds are used subject to the limitations in section 2005 of the Social Security Act, except that, for purposes of this subparagraph—
paragraphs (3), (5), and (8) of section 2005(a) of such Act shall not apply; and
the limitation in section 2005(a)(7) of such Act shall not apply with respect to any standard which the State involved determines would impede the ability of the State to provide emergency temporary care to a child, dependent, or household member referred to in subparagraph (A) of this paragraph; and
if the State determines that such a standard would be so impeding, the State shall report the determination to the Secretary, separately from the annual report to the Secretary by the State;
the funds are used to supplement, not supplant, State general revenue funds for child care assistance; and
the funds are not used for child care costs that are—
covered by funds provided under the Child Care and Development Block Grant Act of 1990 or section 418 of the Social Security Act; or
reimbursable by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Essential worker defined
In paragraph (1), the term
essential worker means—
a health sector employee, including but not limited to a licensed nurse, clinical nurse assistant, medical nurse assistant, nurse practitioner, physician assistant, physician, home health aide, laboratory technician, or other licensed health care professionals as determined appropriate by the Secretary of Health and Human Services;
an emergency response worker;
a sanitation worker;
a worker at a business which a State or local government official has determined must remain open to serve the public during the emergency referred to in paragraph (1)(B); and
any other worker who cannot telework, and whom the State deems to be essential during the emergency referred to in paragraph (1)(B).