Important Updates to Child Care Counts Payment Programs

Funding from all Child Care Counts Payment programs must be spent on expenses incurred between 3/1/20 and 3/31/21.

Información en español.

Initial guidance released on April 22, 2020, provided that the cost of an expenditure is incurred when the recipient has expended funds to cover the cost. Upon further consideration and informed by an understanding of Federal and State compliance practices, the Wisconsin Department of Children and Families (DCF) is clarifying that for a cost to be considered to have been incurred, performance or delivery must occur during the covered period, but payment of funds need not be made during that time (though it is generally expected that this will take place within 90 days of a cost being incurred).

To comply with this guidance, all funds from the Child Care Counts Payment Programs - Emergency, Fall 2020 and Fall 2020 Round 2, must be spent on expenses incurred between March 1, 2020 – March 31, 2021.

Refer to the Terms and Conditions for each program. 

Application
Period
Funding
Period
Program Name Program
Type
Spending
Time Frame
5/18 -
5/29/2020
3/12 - 4/11/2020 Essential Workers (1)
Incentive Pay (2)
Temporary Closure (3)
Emergency Funds must be
spent on expenses
incurred between
3/1/20 and 3/31/21.
6/8 -
6/19/2020
4/12 - 5/11/2020 Essential Workers (1)
Incentive Pay (2)
Temporary Closure (3)
Emergency
6/29 -
7/10/2020
5/12 - 5/26/2020 Essential Workers (1)
Incentive Pay (2)
Temporary Closure (3)
Emergency
9/9 -
9/18/2020
Fall 2020 Supporting Quality Care (A)
Staff Retention/Recruitment (B)
Supplemental
10/26 - 11/6/2020 Fall 2020
Round 2
Supporting Quality Care (A)
Staff Retention/Recruitment (B)
Supplemental

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about Spending Child Care Counts Payments

What does “expenses incurred” mean?

Expenses incurred relates to costs incurred and/or funding spent in order to run a child care program. Child Care Counts Program funds can be spent on any expense incurred, and it must be included in the Terms and Conditions for the program for which the funds were received, during the timeframe of March 12, 2020 through March 31, 2021).

Must I spend all of the Child Care Counts Program funds by 3/31/21? Do they have to be out of my bank account by that date?

No, while it is best practice to spend the funds before 3/31/21, providers can look back at their costs during the pandemic (March 1, 2020 through March 31, 2021) and identify expenses incurred where these funds could be used. Make sure to have documentation/receipts of how these funds were allocated or spent available in case of a future audit.

How long do I have to look back at my costs to identify expenses incurred? Will I get notification from DCF that the funds have to be spent or returned?

Providers have until March 31, 2021 to identify expenses incurred between March 1, 2020 – March 31, 2021, where they will allocate the funds received through the Child Care Counts Payment Program. It is important that providers document how these funds were allocated and spent as they could be selected for a future audit and fund allocation or expenditure documentation could be requested.

I am using funds from Program B: Funding Staff Recruitment and Retention Efforts for staff pay increases. This money will remain in my account until future pay periods. Is this acceptable?

Yes, this is acceptable. Just be sure that your payroll records account for the funds being used for a pay increase.

I am planning an upgrade to my facility, and the work has not been done yet. Is this ok?

This is acceptable, as long as you have a binding contract for work that is going to be done.

Why did the spending timeframe change?

The spending timeframe was changed in order to comply with federal and state compliance requirements.