SHB 2456

This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.

As of February 17, 2020

Title: An act relating to working connections child care eligibility.

Brief Description: Concerning working connections child care eligibility.

Sponsors: House Committee on Appropriations (originally sponsored by Representatives Callan, Eslick, Ramos, Ryu, Shewmake, Chapman, Senn, Frame, Thai, Bergquist, Kilduff, Stonier, Tharinger, Davis, Macri, Pollet, Goodman, Wylie and Doglio; by request of Governor Inslee).

Brief History: Passed House: 2/13/20, 60-37.

Committee Activity: Early Learning & K-12 Education: 2/21/20.

Brief Summary of Bill

  • Directs the Department of Children, Youth, and Families to extend a homeless grace period in the Working Connections Child Care program, which would allow families 12 months instead of 4 months to provide verification of participation in approved activities and other information.


Staff: Ailey Kato (786-7434)

Background: Working Connections Child Care. This federally and state-funded program provides child care subsidies to families with an income at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level—$43,440 for a family of three. The state pays part of the cost of childcare when a parent is employed, self-employed, or in approved work activities, except in certain circumstances. The family is responsible for making a copayment to the child care provider based on the family's countable income.

Authorizations for a Working Connections Child Care (WCCC) subsidy are effective for 12 months. The Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF) must manage the program, so the average monthly caseload does not exceed 33,000 households and must give access to the program based on priorities specified in the operating budget.

Under DCYF rules, WCCC benefits for an eligible consumer begin when the consumer has completed the application and verification process within 30 days of the application, and the consumer is working or participating in an approved activity.

Homeless Grace Period. A current WCCC rule provides eligibility to a homeless grace period for families experiencing homelessness if:

Families remain eligible for the homeless grace period through the end of the fourth month, even if their homeless status changes.

McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act. This federal law provides funding to states to support programs serving students experiencing homelessness. Under the act, "homeless" means being without a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence.

Summary of Bill: DCYF must extend the homeless grace period from a 4-month grace period to a 12-month grace period. "Homeless" means without a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence as defined by McKinney-Vento.

Existing statutory language is moved into a new section.

Appropriation: None.

Fiscal Note: Available. New fiscal note requested on February 14, 2020.

Creates Committee/Commission/Task Force that includes Legislative members: No.

Effective Date: The bill takes effect on July 1, 2020.