Mara Powell

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

LOUISVILLE, KY – Today, we’re celebrating the Senate Economic Development, Tourism, & Labor Committee’s passage of House Bill 499. The measure, championed by Representative Samara Heavrin, will establish the framework for the Employee Child Care Assistance Partnership – which is a win-win-win for kids and families, businesses, and our economy.

A lack of access to child care is a primary contributor to Kentucky’s labor shortage and low workforce participation rates. The Employee Child Care Assistance Partnership established by HB 499 will match employer child care benefits with state dollars. This can be a powerful tool needed to address the profound challenges families face when accessing quality child care, as well as help businesses attract and retain employees.

We thank Representative Heavrin, the many co-sponsors of HB 499, and Senate President Stivers for their commitment to strengthening Kentucky’s child care system and the Senate Economic Development, Tourism, & Labor Committee for ensuring its passage today. We also thank the budget Conference Committee for funding and prioritizing this program. We urge the Kentucky Senate to ensure this measure crosses the finish line by the final gavel.

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