Child Care Stabilization Grants FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions related to the Child Care Stabilization Grants from the Department of Early Education & Care (EEC)

Frequently Asked Questions

How is ‘licensed capacity’ determined?               

For Group and School Age/Center-Based programs, the formula will use a center’s total licensed capacity to calculate the base amount.  If a center-based program needs to adjust its site capacity, please contact your licensor or submit an appeal on the grant using the appeal form embedded within the application.

Because Family Child Care (FCC) providers’ capacity changes with enrollment, all FCC sites will be calculated using a capacity of 10 slots, regardless of their actual capacity, for the purposes of the formula. FCC programs do not have to serve 10 children at the time of application.

 

Is a budget required to apply?   What can the funds be used for?

No, a budget will not be required, but, per federal regulations, providers should spend the funding on one or more of the following categories:

  • Personnel costs, benefits, premium pay, and recruitment and retention
  • Rent or mortgage payments, utilities, facilities maintenance and improvements, or insurance
  • Personal protective equipment, cleaning and sanitation supplies and services, or training
  • Professional development related to health and safety practices
  • Purchases of or updates to equipment and supplies to respond to COVID-19

 

What is the process after I submit my application?

After an application is submitted, you will receive a confirmation email at the email address listed in your LEAD account.

During the review process, if there is additional information required or revisions needed to the application, you will receive an email from LEAD asking for specific revisions.

Once your application is reviewed and approved, you will receive an email notifying you of the approval. The date of your application approval will determine the date of your payment based on the payment schedule. Refer to the disbursement schedule linked within the grant dashboard in your LEAD portal. 

You will receive an email once your payment has been scheduled to keep you up to date on when payments can be expected.

 

How many months of funding will I receive?

Providers may receive up to 12 months of grant funding during the current grant period, which is from July 2021 through 2022, based on the month indicated on their first application. For example, if a provider chooses their application for funding to start in October, they would be eligible for up to 9 months of grant funding.

 

How will I receive the grant money?

There are two payment options, and providers can indicate which they prefer within the application: 1. Direct deposit or electronic funds transfer; 2. Paper check by mail

 

If I have more than one Massachusetts location, am I eligible to receive more than one grant?  

Yes. Every licensed child care program site is eligible for a grant; this includes multi-site programs. Umbrella organizations may submit individual applications on behalf of the individual sites they manage, but they may not submit a single application that covers all managed sites, however, because eligibility and award amounts will be determined at the site level based on each site’s licensed capacity.

 

How do I fill out a W-9 form for this grant?

For the Child Care Stabilization Grants, the required W-9 information is included in the application, so providers do not need to download or upload a separate form.

If you have further questions about how to fill out W-9 information, check out this video to learn how to complete a Form W-9: https://www.irsvideos.gov/Business/Resources/HowToCompleteFormW-9

Please consult your accountant or tax professional to understand more about your particular tax situation and how this guidance applies to your specific business structure.

 

Are these grants taxable?           

The IRS has published information indicating that “receipt of a government grant by a business is generally not excluded from the business’s gross income under the Federal Tax Code and therefore is taxable.” 

Please consult your accountant or tax professional to understand more about your particular tax situation and how this guidance applies to your specific business structure.

Programs should have received 1099 forms via mail demonstrating how much funding they received during calendar year 2021. Programs should reach out to the Help Desk if they have not received a 1099 by March 10, 2022. 1-833-600-2074    eecgrantsupport@mtxb2b.com

  

If I have been closed since the beginning of the pandemic but am interested in reopening, am I able to use these funds to support reopening?       

Yes. Programs need to be open during the month for which they are applying. For example, if you are planning to reopen in September and have set a date for reopening with your licensor, you may apply now for September, and receive funds before reopening.

 

If you have to close your program temporarily during the 12-month grant period (for vacation, illness/injury, or COVID-19 related) will you still be eligible for the grant during that month?

Providers will not be penalized for temporary closures that occur during the grant period, provided they are open and serving children for at least part of that month.

 

The application indicates that funds can be used to pay for previous program expenses. How far back can a program go in paying these previous expenses?       

Providers can use the funds to pay prior program expenses incurred after January 31, 2020.

 

Is there a deadline for spending this funding?

At this time, there is not a federal spending or liquidation deadline for beneficiaries (i.e., programs) of stabilization funding. However, the monthly design of grant funding is to ensure that programs have stable cash flow from the grant that adjusts to changing conditions (i.e. staffing changes) and can use these funds for ongoing operational costs as they occur.

 

When do I recertify my application?       

You will be prompted (via an email and in LEAD) to recertify your application on the first day of the month you are recertifying.  The recertification process can be done at any time after the first of the month. For example, if you submitted your application such that the first month of your grant is September, you would need to recertify at the beginning of October.

 

What is the Social Vulnerability Index (SVI)?      

SVI is a comprehensive metric developed by the federal Center for Disease Control (CDC) used to indicate community need. SVI is scored from 0 to 1. It considers 15 variables measured at the census tract level, including factors related to socioeconomic status and household composition.

 

Can child care providers use the Child Care Stabilization grant funds to cover family copayments or tuition?

No, child care providers cannot use Child Care Stabilization grant funds  to cover family copayments or tuition.  The grant funds are designed to support the child care market as a whole by covering business related expenses. The law specifies that child care providers may use their child care stabilization funds on the following allowable activities:

  • Personnel costs, benefits, premium pay, and recruitment and retention
  • Rent or mortgage payments, utilities, facilities maintenance and improvements, or insurance
  • Personal protective equipment, cleaning and sanitation supplies and services, or training
  • Professional development related to health and safety practices
  • Purchases of or updates to equipment and supplies to respond to COVID-19

If child care providers intend to cover family copayments or tuition they must use funds from a non-EEC funds. 

 

If you have to close your program temporarily during the 12-month grant period due to an inactive status, will you still be eligible for the grant during that month? 

Programs in inactive status are not able to apply or recertify their stabilization grant while they are in inactive status, as only programs that are open to serve children are eligible for stabilization grants. Programs that close temporarily during the 12-month grant period due to an inactive status (including inactive status pending an investigation) will have their payment frozen as of the date that the program went inactive in LEAD. Providers who are closed due to an inactive status pending the outcome of an investigation may not recertify until the investigation has been closed and corrective action has been approved by EEC.  If a program is in inactive status for a full month, they are not eligible for grant funding during that month.

 

If I decide to close permanently, do I need to give the money back? 

Any program that has closed permanently is not eligible to receive continued grant funding. Programs that permanently close are expected to notify EEC prior to their date of closure. EEC can then help the provider determine whether any funds need to be returned. Funds received prior to the date of closure may be used for approved expenses. Any funds received after the date of permanent closure will need to be returned to EEC.

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