Subsidies for paying for child care costs can be provided by the state of New Mexico Child Care Services Bureau. The government organization can provide vouchers to qualified low income families so that they can attend work or some form of education or job training.
The program is very limited in scope and a waiting list is often in place due to the demands on it and financial constraints. Some of the government agencies that are involved in overseeing this program include the Office of Child Development, the New Mexico Family Nutrition Bureau, and the Services Bureau. Together these groups do what they can to satisfy the demand and high number of requests. They work together to coordinate and plan affordable, higher quality child care services and distribute subsides to those that truly need help. The state of New Mexico also works closely with the providers in the state to ensure they are training and operating at a high level.
While income limits can change, in general the Child Care Assistance Program can help low income pay for their child care if their total household income is at or below 200% of the federal government poverty level set for families of their size.
Other conditions include the parent needs to be in school or working and of course have a need for child care while they are in those activities. The exact subsidy amount provided to qualified applicants will vary based on many factors.
New Mexico will consider the age of the children, the type and rating of child care requested by the family and also the exact location in the state. Your case manager will review the STARS Quality Rating System as part of this process to determine the rating. When you apply, a regional office in your town or county will have staff on site that will work with qualified low income families to determine the exact amount of the government subsidy that they qualify for.
However the most important consideration may be the size of your household and your family's total income. The voucher or assistance payment from the government will be issued directly to the provider as well and not the parent(s). The payment will more than likely only cover a portion of your bill. Then the recipient may be responsible for a co-payment or fees that are based on your need determination. That is why New Mexico calls their payment a subsidy.
The Child Care Services Bureau has a goal of helping as many low income and working poor families as possible receive financial assistance with the cost of their child care. They are involved in the entire process as well. For example, the government agencies are also involved in the licensure and registration of child and day care providers. They do this in an effort to help protect parents as well as this will help ensure quality services are offered.
When applying, please be prepared to show and bring some or all of the following. The state may require Social Security cards as well as birth certificates for all household members, even those not receiving government benefits or subsidies. The parent will also need to bring current check stubs for at least 1 month. Also be ready with verification of residency in New Mexico, such as a copy of lease, mortgage, and/or utility bills. Also bring copies of school schedules as well as any child support, SSI, and any other income you may have. So the applicant will need all sorts of documentation that would support their needs for financial help from the state.
To learn more or to apply for assistance, call 1(800)691-9067 or stop by Child Care or Social Service Office to determine program eligibility.
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