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Tribal advocates keep up legal pressure for fair political maps; 12-member jury sworn in for Trump's historic criminal trial; the importance of healthcare decision planning; and a debt dilemma: poll shows how many people wrestle with college costs.

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Civil rights activists say a court ruling could end the right to protest in three southern states, a federal judge lets January 6th lawsuits proceed against former President Trump, and police arrest dozens at a Columbia University Gaza protest.

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Wyoming needs more educators who can teach kids trade skills, a proposal to open 40-thousand acres of an Ohio forest to fracking has environmental advocates alarmed and rural communities lure bicyclists with state-of-the-art bike trail systems.

Child care tax credits gain momentum in MO

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Monday, January 22, 2024   

While Missouri's legislative session has just begun, child-care tax credits are at top of mind with a bipartisan House bill.

HB 1488 takes a three-pronged approach to supplementing the child-care industry.

Casey Hanson, deputy director with Kids Win Missouri, said it will help make strides in Missouri's child-care deserts and help with better outcomes for all Missouri children.

She added that it's Gov. Mike Parson's final term, and because he's a big supporter of the child-care tax credits, pre-K funding, and subsidies, she's excited to hear his State of the State address on Wednesday.

"The governor has really prioritized child care and early education, and this will be the last year of his term, so one more shot to make a bang," said Hanson. "So, we're hopeful to see if there are any other things that he's planning to put forth in his budget."

Casey said she hopes a companion bill in the Senate will have a hearing scheduled either later this week or the next.

Casey said the Child Tax Credit may help bring about some innovative ways to use the tax credits to create partnerships between businesses and child-care programs that could benefit children, families and communities in the long term.

She suggested that people continue to be vocal about their needs to ensure they are heard.

"Missouri Child Advocacy Day," said Hanson, "that's an opportunity for the average Missourian parents, providers, people that care about children to come to the Capitol and talk about the issues that are important to them and just to tell their story and what's impacting them to their legislators on March 6."

Missouri misses an estimated $1.35 billion annually for the state's economy, including a $280 million annual loss in tax revenue because of child care-related issues, according to research by the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry.


Disclosure: Kids Win Missouri contributes to our fund for reporting on Budget Policy & Priorities, Children's Issues, Early Childhood Education, Youth Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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