Child Care and Development Block Grant

The Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG or Discretionary Funds) is a part of the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) program, along with the Child Care Mandatory and Matching Funds (see CFDA 93.596). The CCDBG provides grants to States, Territories, Tribes, and tribal organizations serving federally-recognized tribes (public institutions of higher education and hospitals are not eligible applicants) for child care assistance for low-income families. The goals are to: (1) allow each State maximum flexibility in developing child care programs and policies that best suit the needs of children and parents within such State; (2) promote parental choice to empower working parents to make their own decisions on the child care that best suits their family's needs; (3) encourage States to provide consumer education information to help parents make informed choices about child care; (4) assist States to provide child care to parents trying to achieve independence from public assistance; and (5) assist States in implementing the health, safety, licensing, and registration standards established in State regulations. Current priorities include: making systemic investments in quality child care to promote child development and health and safety; and creating a system that is child focused, family friendly, and fair to providers.

Last Known Status
Program Number
Federal Agency
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Office: Administration for Children and Families
Types of Assistance
Uses and Use Restrictions
In the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2014, Congress directs that funds appropriated for the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG or Discretionary Funds) must be used to supplement, not supplant, State general revenue funds for child care assistance for low-income families. Lead Agencies must use Discretionary Funds for child care services on a sliding fee scale basis, activities that improve the quality or availability of such services, and other activities that realize the goals of the CCDBG. Certain amounts of Discretionary Funds must be used for specific purposes: quality expansion; infant and toddler quality improvement; and child care resource and referral, including a national toll-free hotline and website, and school-age child care activities. A portion of the Discretionary Funds is also designated for the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services to carry-out research, demonstration, and evaluation projects. Not more than five percent of the aggregate amount of CCDF Funds expended by the State or Territory (15 percent for Tribes or tribal organizations) may be expended for administrative costs incurred by the State or Territory to carry-out all of its functions and duties. The term "administrative costs" does not include the costs of providing direct services. A State or Territory shall use not less than four percent of the CCDF Funds to improve child care quality and availability including comprehensive consumer education, activities to increase parental choice, and other activities such as resource and referral services, provider grants and loans, monitoring and enforcement of requirements, training and technical assistance, and improved compensation for child care staff. Except for approved construction of child care facilities by tribal grantees, no Discretionary Funds may be used for the purchase or improvement of land, or for the purchase, construction, or permanent improvement of any building or facility (other than for minor remodeling and for upgrading facilities to meet State and local child care standards). No Discretionary Funds provided directly to child care providers through grants or contracts may be expended for any sectarian purpose or activity, including sectarian worship or instruction. However, Grantees must give parents the option of receiving vouchers or certificates to allow parents the choice of child care provider, including faith-based or community providers. No Discretionary Funds may be provided for any services provided to students enrolled in grades 1 through 12 during the regular school day; for any services for which such students receive academic credit toward graduation; or for any instructional services which supplant or duplicate the academic program of any public or private school. Lead Agencies shall assure that a substantial portion of the Discretionary Funds will be used to provide assistance to low-income working families who are not receiving assistance under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program, attempting through work activities to transition off of temporary assistance programs, nor at risk of becoming dependent on temporary assistance programs.
Child Care and Development Block Grant Act of 1990, as amended, 42 U.S.C 9858; Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2014, Public Law 113-76.
Eligibility Requirements
Applicant Eligibility
Eligibility: All 50 States, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and Federally recognized Tribal Governments and consortia.
Beneficiary Eligibility
Children under age 13 (or, at the option of the grantee, up to age 19, if physically or mentally incapable of self-care or under court supervision), who reside with a family whose income does not exceed 85 percent of the State median income for a family of the same size, and who reside with a parent (or parents) who is working or attending job training or educational program; or are in need of, or are receiving protective services.
Lead Agencies must operate under a CCDF plan approved by the Administration for Children and Families, and must provide assurances that the Grantee will comply with the requirements of the CCDBG Act and all applicable Federal law. This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-87.
Application and Award Process
Preapplication Coordination
Each Grantee must designate a Lead Agency to which grants are awarded and that is accountable for the use of the Discretionary Funds provided, the duties of which shall include developing a CCDF plan. In conjunction with the development of the CCDF plan, the Lead Agency must hold at least one public hearing no earlier than nine months before the CCDF plan becomes effective and after at least 20 days of statewide public notice, to provide the public an opportunity to comment on the provision of child care services under the plan. In advance of the hearing, the Lead Agency must make the content of the plan available to the public. The Lead Agency must also coordinate the provision of services under the program with other Federal, State, and local child care and early childhood development programs. Also, the Lead Agency must consult with appropriate representatives of local governments. Tribal Lead Agencies submitting applications for construction must submit an environmental impact assessment. Environmental impact information is not required for this program. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.
Application Procedure
This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-102. This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-110. A Lead Agency desiring to receive an allotment for a fiscal year is required to submit a two-year CCDF plan to the Administration for Children and Families, as well as, financial and other information necessary for the grants process. Each CCDF plan must contain certifications and assurances by the Lead Agency that it will comply with the requirements of the Child Care and Development Block Grant Act (CCDBG). The plan must also include: the designation of a Lead Agency; the provision of assurances regarding policies and procedures as stated in Section 658E(c)(2) of the CCDBG; an outline of the intended use of block grant funds in compliance with Section 658E(c)(3) of the CCDBG; the provision of certification regarding payment rates as stated in Section 658E(c)(4) of the CCDBG; and the establishment of a sliding fee scale. Additional requirements are specified by 45 CFR Parts 98 and 99.
Award Procedure
Grants are awarded after the receipt and approval of the CCDF plan by the Administration for Children and Families.
Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.
Range of Approval/Disapproval Time
The Administration for Children and Families will review the CCDF plans for approval and will act on the plans within 90 days.
Guidelines for appealing the disapproval of CCDF plans are specified in regulations (45 CFR Part 99).
CCDF plans must be submitted every two years.
Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory Formula: Title 45 CFR, Part 98.61.
This program has no matching requirements.
This program does not have MOE requirements.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Grant awards are made to Lead Agencies with approved CCDF plans. Grantees must obligate all Discretionary Funds in the fiscal year in which they are granted or in the succeeding fiscal year. Those funds must be liquidated no later that the end of the third fiscal year. Method of awarding/releasing assistance: quarterly.
Post Assistance Requirements
As specified in 45 CFR Part 98, States must report to ACF annually aggregate data on families, children in care, providers, payment methods, and consumer education. Quarterly case-level reports are required to provide data on families, children, and providers, and payment information. Tribes must also provide an annual count of children and families served through CCDF; average hours of service per child by type of care; average monthly payment and co-payments per child; number of children served by income; and supplemental narratives. No cash reports are required. No progress reports are required. States must also submit quarterly expenditure reports. Territories are required to report estimates and expenditures for the Discretionary Fund only on a quarterly basis. States, DC, and Puerto Rico are required to measure, calculate, and report improper payments as well as identify strategies for reducing future improper payments. One-third of the 50 States, DC, and Puerto Rico must report annually on a three-year cycle. Tribes report expenditures for the Tribal Mandatory, Discretionary, and Construction/Renovation funds. Monitoring is in accordance with 45 CFR 98.90.
In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A-133 (Revised, June 27, 2003), "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Non-Profit Organizations," nonfederal entities that expend financial assistance of $500,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Nonfederal entities that expend less than $500,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in Circular No. A-133. Additional auditing may be necessary.
Proper grant accounting records must be maintained.
Program Accomplishments
Fiscal Year 2013: In FY 2013, 313 Discretionary grants were awarded. Fiscal Year 2014: In FY 2014, it is anticipated that 317 Discretionary grants will be awarded. Fiscal Year 2015: In FY 2015, it is anticipated that 317 Discretionary grants will be awarded.
Financial Information
Account Identification
(Formula Grants) FY 13 $2,190,704,000; FY 14 est $2,344,249,000; and FY 15 est $2,395,044,000 - These figures do not include CCDF Mandatory Funds and Matching Funds under CFDA 93.596. (Project Grants (Contracts)) FY 13 $551,400; FY 14 est $5,900,000; and FY 15 est $12,085,000 - These figures do not include CCDF Mandatory Funds and Matching Funds under CFDA 93.596.
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
For States, including DC and Puerto Rico, the range of grants in FY 2013 is: $2,903,068 to $240,744,848; the average grant is $41,050,374. For 261 Tribal grantees, the range of grants in FY 2013 is: $22,614 to $3,780,848; the average grant is $169,008. For the four Territories, the range of grants in FY 2013 is $1,976,900 to $4,358,920; the average grant is $2,756,948. These figures are not inclusive of funds received through CFDA 93.596.
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
These funds are subject to the Child Care and Development Fund regulations at 45 CFR Parts 98 and 99.
Information Contacts
Regional or Local Office
See Regional Agency Offices. Persons are encouraged to communicate with the Office of Child Care Regional Program Managers (RPMs). A list of the RPMs and their contact information is available at You may also contact the Office of Child Care, Administration for Children and Families at (202) 690-6782 or by Fax at (202) 690-5600.
Headquarters Office
Mary Sprague, Office of Child Care, Administration for Children and Families, Department of Health and Human Services, 370 L'Enfant Promenade, S.W., 5th Floor East, Washington, District of Columbia 20447 Email: Phone: (202)-690-6782 Fax: (202) 690-5600.
Website Address
Examples of Funded Projects
Not Applicable.
Criteria for Selecting Proposals
Not Applicable.
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