by Kate Lisa
Gov. Kathy Hochul’s vision to address the state’s child care crisis continues to differ from several lawmakers as they prepare to begin this session’s budget negotiations.
The Senate Children & Families Committee held a legislative hearing in Albany on Thursday to hear testimony from providers around the state about how to best help the crumbling system. Three of the Senate’s seven members participated.
The state has lost the ability to provide child care to about 20,000 fewer children since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. The state lost roughly half of those fewer slots for care in the last six months, Pete Nabozny, director of The Children’s Agenda, told lawmakers.
“Unfortunately, for too many families in New York, child care is, instead, a constant challenge to manage,” Nabozny said during testimony. “Many families simply cannot find a care center that meets their needs.”
Child care is becoming scarce across New York — especially in urban and rural communities — with many counties facing double-digit declines in child programs over the last three years.
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