(LEX 18) — The American Families Plan is the latest component of President Joe Biden's ambitious agenda. The plan features tax credits, universal pre-school, free community college, and other aspects. But how would this impact Kentucky families?
This week, the White House released information on how the plan could affect Kentucky students, parents, workers, and children.
One of the big impacts would be pre-school. According to the White House, there are 110,880 3-and-4-year-olds in Kentucky and only 41% of them are currently enrolled in a publicly funded pre-school. The White House says Biden's plan would provide "access to free, high-quality pre-school" to the rest.
The American Families Plan also includes $225 billion to cover child care expenses. That money would "enable low and middle-income families to pay no more than 7 percent of their income on high-quality care, generating lifetime benefits for 78,064 children in Kentucky and helping working families make ends meet" according to the White House.
The fact sheet released by the White House sets the average cost of child care for a Kentucky toddler at $7,574 per year. That means a two-parent household on average needs to spend nine percent of their income on child care every year. And that cost is just for one child.
The American Families Plan also sets money aside to provide students with two free years of community college. While the White House did not say how many Kentuckians could be affected by that, it said the average cost of a two-year degree in Kentucky is $5,460 per year. It will also increase the maximum Pell Grant awards by approximately $1,400 to support 92,168 students in Kentucky who rely on the grants for their education.
Biden's plan would extend the American Rescue Plan’s Child Tax Credit of $3,600 per child under 6-years old and $3,000 per child who is older through 2025. According to the White House, this extension would benefit 929,000 children in Kentucky, including 203,000 children of color. This proposal is estimated to lift 66,000 children out of poverty in Kentucky and reduce child poverty in the state by 44 percent.