Above: Gottheimer helps claw back federal resources to support New Jersey child care providers and families.
PARAMUS, NJ — Today, U.S. Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) helped announce $10 million in federal investment from the bipartisan CARES Act that will support New Jersey child care providers and families.
During the height of the pandemic, more than half of child care providers — many of them women- and minority-owned small businesses that were already operating on thin margins — had to close their doors. Now, as the economy begins to recover and as more Americans begin returning to work, child care providers are critical to working New Jersey families and to local economies.
“During the height of the pandemic, more than half of child care providers had to close their doors, hurting our families and our economy. But now, thanks to the bipartisan CARES Act, federal resources are being delivered to support our families and child care providers, and to help them recover,” said Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5).
Gottheimer was joined today by New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy, Paramus Mayor Rich LaBarbiera, NJ Senator Joseph Lagana, NJ Assemblywoman Lisa Swain, NJ Assemblyman Chris Tully, Bergen County Commissioner Chairman Tanelli, Bergen County Executive Jim Tedesco, Owner & Director of Little Learners Child Development Center Dawn Cleveland, and Executive Vice President for Special Projects at the NJEDA Tara Colton.
Watch today’s announcement here.
Gottheimer’s remarks as prepared for delivery are below.
Thank you, Governor, for coming to Paramus today for this critical investment, and for everything you’ve done in New Jersey to get us through this crisis and to help our families and caregivers recover.
As you’ve heard, we’re here today to announce $10 million in federal investment here in Bergen County that we clawed back to Jersey through the bipartisan CARES Act we passed in Congress last year.
We all know this hasn’t been an easy time for our state or for our families. A year ago, we were literally in the eye of the COVID-19 storm. Since then, families have had to play the role of parent, teacher, daytime caregiver, and employee — all at the same time, 24/7, in a way that for many parents, who may normally head to work every day was certainly not the norm.
Because of the sudden change last year while everyone quarantined, the pandemic has devastated the child care sector. During the height of the pandemic, it was reported that more than half of child care providers — many of them women- and minority-owned small businesses that were already operating on incredibly thin margins — had to close their doors.
But now, more help is here, with these bipartisan backed federal dollars being issued in a bipartisan way to the New Jersey Economic Development Authority to support child care providers like this one.
This federal investment will help child care providers, reopen, operate, and recover, protecting child care workers, improve safety, and support hard working middle class families here in North Jersey.
We all know many families here in the Fifth District rely on child care providers to go to their jobs every day. So, as our economy begins to recover, and as more folks return to work, child care providers are absolutely critical to working New Jersey families and to our local economies.
This is why I’ve been focused — both at the federal level, working with Congress and with the White House, and back here at home — on ensuring we can safely get our schools reopened, get more teachers vaccinated, and get our kids back in the classroom so parents can return to work and stay in the workforce. And I want to thank the Governor for his efforts.
In addition to the $10 million federal investment for child care providers we’re announcing today, within the bipartisan, bicameral COVID-19 emergency relief package I helped lead with the Problem Solvers Caucus through Congress in December, we included $10 billion to stabilize the child care industry and an additional $250 million for the Head Start program. And in the most recent American Rescue Plan that was signed into law, we included $39 billion for child care providers. All of these resources are still heading out the door as we speak –– including to here in the Fifth District.
Today’s announcement comes from a great deal of cooperation here in New Jersey — from across the aisle and from across North Jersey. This bipartisan state bill was sponsored by many of the great state legislators representing parts of the Fifth District, including right here, to help us get through this, so that we can recover, and so we can grow, and I want to thank the Governor again.
As we’ve seen over these past few months, in New Jersey and throughout our country, we are stronger when we all come together.
We are continuing to get more vaccines out, we’re helping our different industries recover, and we’re supporting our families. We live in the greatest country in the world, we will beat this virus, and, I believe, that our best days are ahead of us.
Please stay safe and stay healthy.
May God bless you and God bless these United States of America.