LUBBOCK, Texas — Texans voted for a proposition that will give some monetary relief to childcare centers by exempting at least 50% of the child care property’s appraised value. The vote was part of the Nov. 7 constitutional amendment election and depending on what the particular facility decides to do with the money the property tax cuts bring to them, it could also be a relief to parents who bring their kids to childcare.
Child care facilities have been struggling since the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Many facilities have closed down while others have had to raise tuition prices in order to pay its staff appropriate wages.
“We have to increase somewhere so that’s where it has to hit is the parents – the pocketbook – to help us maintain the payroll,” Kathy Sisson, the director of Here We Grow Children’s Learning Center said.
Those still open this year were especially worried about money to pay their staff after the COVID-19 relief funding they were getting dried up.
Sisson doesn’t want to have to raise prices for parents. She said, luckily, with the property tax cuts, they would be able to stop raising the tuition at her facility since it would have more of the money needed to pay its staff.
Parent and employee of Here We Grow Children’s Learning Center, Diane Luan, said this could help parent’s out a lot.
“We want both what’s good for the child, but we also need our bills paid as well.”
She said a lot of times, parents have to debate between paying for child care or paying for other essential bills.
“It’s kind of hard for a parent to say, ‘Do I miss work, or do I take them for a full day? What can I afford?’ And most of the time you can’t afford either one. You can’t afford to miss a day of work or two days and you definitely don’t want to leave your child alone,” Luan said.
Sisson believes a 50% cut in taxes would be beneficial because they’d have more money to pay staff and tuition prices wouldn’t increase as much. However, considering the struggles of child care centers right now, they could use much more of a cut.
“What I hope that they do is give us that break – that 100% break. We’re looking at children. We’re raising children. – they are our future. So, if we do not protect these children in quality facilities that can stay afloat and make it happen for these kids then it’s going to be devastating for families and children,” Sisson said.
For Sisson, a 100% cut in property taxes would mean her day care facility would have $60,000 a year that could be used for things like materials, electricity or staff pay.
“This type of stuff gets it to where we can pay them to give high quality to children and pay them what they deserve,” Sisson said.