(WAVERLY, IOWA) -- On Monday, December 13, Speaker of the Iowa House Pat Grassley (R-New Hartford) held a roundtable discussion on the issue of child care at the Families First Child Care Center in Waverly, Iowa. Grassley met with in-home child care providers, daycare center child care providers, and employers for a robust discussion on the holistic approach required to address Iowa's child care crisis.
"We know there is no silver bullet idea to solve the child care crisis in Iowa and increase access to quality, affordable child care in Iowa," said Grassley. "That's why it was important to see so many different people from the community on different sides of the industry come together for this discussion."
Grassley shared the progress the Iowa statehouse has made on this issue by running through the bills passed last session and signed by the Governor. These bills include doubling the eligibility requirement for child care tax credits, fixing the "cliff effect" to ensure families can be phased off of child care assistance as they grow in their career, and increasing the rates for child care providers, among others.
Attendees thanked Grassley and his fellow legislators for the progress made and the increased attention given to the issue in recent years. They also shared their experience and struggles they continue to navigate, particularly in the face of COVID-19.
"One of the biggest issues we can all agree is facing our state right now is a labor shortage," said Grassley. "This session we are going to be working hard to address this workforce issue, and child care has to continue to be a part of that conversation. I'm eager to begin our work for the 2022 Legislative Session and advance policies to help move Iowa forward."