Mara Powell

Statement by Dr. Terry Brooks, executive director, Kentucky Youth Advocates

LOUISVILLE, KY – Today, the Senate passed House Bill 499 – a win for the child care sector, businesses, parents, and our youngest Kentuckians. Once concurred by the House and signed by the Governor, the measure will establish the framework for the Employee Child Care Assistance Partnership, which is an innovative program that will match employer child care benefits with state dollars.

Families and businesses alike know the ripple effects of an unstable child care sector – especially the decision to stay in the workforce or staying home to care for the children as a result of high costs of care and communities with child care deserts. And child care providers have faced immense challenges to keeping their centers safe and open for the families they serve, as well as their own employees. The partnership framework enacted by HB 499 will extend small- and medium-sized businesses the opportunity to offer child care benefits in a meaningful and realistic way, while safeguarding stability for child care centers. All while presenting parents the support to continue their careers and select child care providers based on their family’s unique needs.

We thank Representative Heavrin and the many co-sponsors of HB 499 for their commitment to strengthening Kentucky’s child care system and the Kentucky Senate for ensuring it could reach final passage in the 2022 legislative session. We are also celebrating the investment in this program within the final state budget.

Stay up-to-date on Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children priorities and other bills that are good for kids on our Kentucky General Assembly Bill Tracker.


About Kentucky Youth Advocates
Kentucky Youth Advocates believes all children deserve to be safe, healthy, and secure. As THE independent voice for Kentucky’s children, we work to ensure policymakers create investments and policies that are good for children. Learn more at