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Childcare Recognition Payment Awards

Childcare providers are heroes. Thank you for caring, teaching and nurturing our kiddos, especially during these uncertain times. 

Today, I participated in a press conference celebrating up to $835 per childcare worker will be awarded right before the holidays! This stemming from the $3 million "recognition payments” to childcare workers that I sponsored in the Seattle Rescue Plan Act!  

The Seattle Rescue Plan Act, passed earlier this year (co-sponsored by Council President González, Mayor Durkan, and myself) also included $5 million in facilities improvements to help construct and add experienced tremendous population growth, and high costs of living. Two years ago, Seattle, for the first time in 50 years, reached a population of 100,000 children under 18, long waitlists and high costs of childcare, as well as low pay for childcare providers.

COVID-19 exacerbated our childcare problems, with a she-cession, forcing families, predominately women, out of the workforce, and with local childcare closures (estimated at 7-10% of childcare facilities in Seattle-King County closing). This is exacerbating gender, racial equity and economic inequalities in our local economy and around the country. 

Today the award of up to $835 per childcare worker to over 3,500 childcare providers in Seattle, is an important small step toward recognizing the underpayment and economic instability in this sector - which much more work to do. Based on provider reports, an estimated that almost 70% of the awardees are BIPOC workers, providing care to over 20,000 children in all 7 Council Districts:

Over 3,500 Seattle childcare providers were awarded recognition payments

Race/Ethnicity 

% of Staff 

Alaskan Native/ Native American 

1% 

Asian 

10% 

Black/ African American 

29% 

Hispanic/ Latino/ LatinX 

19% 

Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 

2% 

North African/ Middle Eastern 

3% 

Two or More Races 

4% 

Other Race 

1% 

White 

31% 

Here's the race / ethnicity breakdown of award recipients. About 70% of the awardees are BIPOC workers.
This "recognition pay" award was made possible due to the incredible advocacy of many organizations, such as the Greater Seattle Child Care Business Coalition, Child Care Resources, SEIU 925, the Seattle Chamber, the Economic Opportunities Institute, Mom’s Rising, and so many childcare providers. There’s more work to be done to support our city’s workforce, businesses, kiddos and working families, and this is a good step forward. A huge thank you to the staff at the Department of Education and Early Learning for their incredible work, outreach, and administration of this award. 

Street Vacations for Affordable Housing Passed by Committee!

This legislation will make it easier to build more affordable housing

Today, legislation I’m sponsoring to create an exemption for publicly funded affordable housing projects from street vacation fee requirements was passed out of the Finance and Housing Committee! This legislation will preserve our precious affordable housing dollars to go even further to create more homes for those who need them, and removes an internal barrier to affordable housing projects, which are currently required to compensate the City for the land costs associated with street vacations—which means that, under current policy, our City affordable housing dollars are transferred right back into the City when street vacations are required.  

By creating a street vacation fee exemption for affordable housing projects, this legislation will not only make sure affordable housing dollars are being used to create more affordable housing—it will help create more units on sites requesting street vacation—a win-win! 

This legislation complements legislation I sponsored that Council passed in 2018 that prioritizes city-owned surplus property for affordable housing, and will add to our efforts to make good use of public property to support the public good through the creation of more affordable housing. And it’s more efficient, removing an unnecessary administrative processes associated with transferring City funds right back into the City.   

The legislation will now move to full Council for a final vote on December 13th! 

Council’s Final Budget Becomes Law

The Council's budget makes an historic $194 million investment in housing and supportive services. The foundation of the budget is built on the progressive revenue from JumpStart Seattle.

Last week, the final 2022 City Council Budget that Council passed goes went into law, making an historic investment of $194m into affordable housing and services, front-loading funding for shovel-ready affordable housing projects this year, and ensuring continuity of affordable housing funding in coming years. The Council’s final budget invests over $15.4m in new services for sheltering and caring for those who are experiencing homelessness resulting in a total of $156m in the 2022 adopted budget. Additionally, there is over $27m into community care and stability programs, such as $7.8m in criminal legal system strategies and alternatives, $6.1m for firefighters and behavioral & mental health care, $5.7m additional food security investments, $4m restored for youth violence interventions, and almost $6m for youth education and arts and culture programs.   

Cities around the country made deep budgetary cuts to city services and implemented layoffs during these tough times, but in Seattle the JumpStart progressive payroll tax, which Council passed and protected with a veto override last year, allowed Council to avoid austerity approaches and steer clear of further exacerbating growing income inequality. This final City Council Budget instead creates more affordable housing, increases shelters and services for those who are experiencing homelessness, and ultimately helps build toward a more equitable economic recovery. 

The Council budget restored the JumpStart spending plan to avoid a 2023 fiscal cliff for affordable housing, and invests in the promised Green New Deal and economic resilience programs. After a decrease in the November revenue forecast, Council went further to add to the fiscal reserves to help guard against future economic volatility. The Council’s final budget invests over $70m in Council priorities to address the most pressing crises facing our city today. 

You can read my full statement here, and check out this news coverage of the 2022 Budget: 

Mayor Signs Seattle's 2022 Budget Into Law | Seattle, WA Patch 

What Everyone Took Away from Seattle’s 2022 Budget | The Urbanist 

Council Uses JumpStart Payroll Tax to Fuel Big Affordable Housing Investments in 2022 Budget - Slog - The Stranger 

Thank you, Lori!

Shout out to Lori Mahieu, Team Teresa’s amazing intern who is finishing up her tenure with the team as she wraps up her degree in Political Science & Law with the University of Washington! Lori led our office on domestic workers policies over the last year, including our work during the budget to pass a resolution requesting the Office of Labor Standards to collaborate with the Domestic Workers Standards Board and other community partners in the creation of policy and possible legislation to extend portable paid time off benefits to Seattle’s domestic workers. Lori also helped with our office and communication systems to make sure we’re able to swiftly and effectively able to stay in touch with you all. While not juggling family, work with our office, and her education, Lori refined her skills as an expert data strategist, and rooted on her beloved Seahawks. All of us at Team Teresa will be rooting you on as you enter your next chapter. Join us in thanking and congratulating Lori!

THANK YOU, Lori, and congratulations!!!

The Arts Are Open Holiday Gift Guide 

'Tis the season to give the gift of the arts!🎁 Our The Arts Are Open Holiday Gift Guide features gift ideas from seasonal event tickets to works from local artists, all curated from #TheArtsAreOpen campaign.  

Make your holiday shopping meaningful by gifting unique experiences and handmade goods, all while supporting our local arts sector! bit.ly/TAAOgiftguide 

Council Recess

Starting on December 20th, Seattle City Council will go into recess until January 3rd. During that time, our office will have limited staff capacity, and we will continue to have at least one staff member at the office to answer any questions or requests. Please note that it may take a little longer for a response. We wish you happy holidays and look forward to serving you next year!  
In solidarity,
Teresa Mosqueda
Budget Chair/Finance & Housing Chair
Seattle City Councilmember
Position 8, Citywide/At-Large
Office: 206.684.8808 
Teresa.Mosqueda@seattle.gov
 
Twitter: twitter.com/cmtmosqueda
Instagram: instagram.com/cmtmosqueda
Facebook: facebook.com/cmtmosqueda
Copyright © 2021 Seattle City Council, All rights reserved.


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