Paige’s Childcare Bills Headed to Sununu’s Desk

Last week, I was proud to send two childcare bills to the governor’s desk. The first, HB1567, reduces regulatory barriers for entrepreneurs seeking to open small, in-home childcare businesses. Stimulating the development of these categories of care is one of best levers we have to ease our crisis in the availability of care over the short-term. The second bill, SB404, expands access to childcare scholarship funds for early childhood educators, helping us build a more sustainable early childhood workforce. Too often our teachers need to stop teaching when they start or grow their own family, because ironically, the very care they provide is unaffordable for their own family at the wage they earn. This has always struck me as one of the clearest signals of this broken market.

Did you know?

  • The average cost of childcare in NH for two kids under five is $31,868, making it the single largest expense for young families in the state?
  • The number of young people that have exited the workforce in NH because they cannot find childcare is greater than the total number of unemployed Granite Staters, making it one the largest drivers of our workforce shortage?
  • Despite the high cost of childcare for families, early childhood workers’ mean wage in NH is below that of fast food workers at approximately $14 per hour, leading to high turnover and snowballing classroom and center closures?

As we reach the end of the 2024 legislative session, I am grateful for all the childcare providers and advocates who have worked with me as we fought together for positive change. We have so much more work ahead of us!