Welcome to Rock County's Childcare Grant Program Portal
In response to the financial and operational hardships experienced by the childcare industry, both during and after the pandemic, the County of Rock has created a Childcare Grant Program (CCGP) – which is funded through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). Feedback from industry experts and childcare providers, as well as other stakeholders too, assisted with creating this grant program. A total of $1.5 Million dollars has been allocated to support the CCGP. The CCGP’s application portal will remain active and open until December 31, 2026 or until said program funds are exhausted. The Wisconsin Early Childhood Association and RSM are assisting the County with the administration of this grant.
Eligible certified/licensed childcare Family Childcare (FCC), Group Childcare (GCC) and Day Camp Childcare (DCC) providers are welcome to apply. Specifically, if a provider’s answers to each of the following questions are YES – then proceed to Create an Account, so you’re able to start/stop/save your application before official clicking on the Submit button.
- Certified and/or licensed childcare provider, as determined and regulated by the Wisconsin Department of Children and Families (DCF), since March 14, 2020?
- Generate less than $1.5 million in annual childcare program income and/or revenue, per your most recent Federal Income Tax Return?
- Have at least one (1) full-time staff (e.g. owner/operator, employee, support staff, etc.), but not more than 40 (full-time equivalent) staff?
- Participating in the DCF YoungStar program and have at least a Two-Star rating?
- Enrolled in the Wisconsin Early Childhood Education Shared Services Network (WEESSN)?
- Not delinquent on any outstanding taxes owed; and current with all applicable county, state and/or federal childcare regulations?
GRANT AWARD CALCULATION
Grant awards are determined by a monthly per child calculation, which varies depending on the licensure classification of a childcare provider. The maximum amount of grant funding, per approved project, is as follows:
- $30,240 per an eligible Family Childcare (FCC) provider, per approved project, which is based on a calculation of $315 per eligible child per month.
- $60,000 per an eligible Group Childcare (GCC) provider, per approved project, which is based on a calculation of $100 per eligible child per month.
- $15,000 per an eligible Day Camp Childcare (DCC) provider, per approved project, which is based on a calculation of $100 per eligible child per month.
Please note, these calculations are based on the residency status of a child’s parental unit or guardian (see the DCF Child Care Enrollment Form). Simply stated, the baseline eligibility status of a child for the purposes of the CCGP’s calculation is determined by whether that child’s parent or guardian is a current Rock County resident. Therefore, non-resident (affiliated) children cannot be included in the above CCGP calculations.
Pending available funding, applicants have the ability to potentially apply multiple times. Specifically, a FCC provider may apply for up to a maximum of four consecutive and approved projects (not to exceed $120,960 per applicant); a GCC provider may apply for up to a maximum of two consecutive and approved projects (not to exceed $120,000 per applicant); and a DCC provider may apply for up to a maximum of four consecutive and approved projects (not to exceed $60,000 per applicant). If an applicant fails to successfully complete its first approved project, that applicant will be prohibited from making any subsequent or future applications.
Grant proceeds may be applied, in accordance with DCF guidelines and funding formula recommendations, to any of the below listed projects. While the CCGP is designed to be flexible, applicants are required to identify, describe and then document the completion of said project(s). These details, as well as others, must be entered into the Project Request Form and then included in an applicant’s submittal. While the Project Request Form requests specific information regarding an applicant's project, estimates vs. actual costs can be submitted. In addition, an applicant is not required to provide any program match-funding.
A project can be classified as either one-time (e.g. training certification, installing a new sink or fence, etc.) or ongoing (i.e. wage enhancements). A project period is the (usual and customary) length of time required to successfully complete said project.For capacity and grant compliance reasons, applicants are strongly encouraged to submit and complete consecutive, verses concurrent, one-time and/or ongoing projects.
- Staff education / training stipends and/or tuition assistance.
- Staff wage enhancements and/or retention / recruitment premiums.
- Expanding and enhancing existing childcare programming capacities, including but not limited to extending after-hour offerings; collaborating with employers to expand programming; etc.
- Increasing or elevating the facility’s YoungStar Quality Rating.
- Enhancing and/or improving the facility’s onsite physical (i.e. structural) and related amenities.
- Serving as match funding to access and/or secure other forms of financial assistance (i.e. grants or loans) to expand and/or upgrade your childcare programming.
APPLICATION REIVEW, AWARD NOTIFICATION & RECEIPT OF FUNDING
Applications will be reviewed and awarded, on a rolling or continuous bases. The typical cycle time, from the receipt of a completed application to the actual disbursement of funds, will generally occur within three weeks (i.e. excluding holidays and other unforeseen events). Award notifications will arrive via email.
With regards to the disbursement process, all grant funding will be disbursed electronically through the bill.com platform. While bill.com is a free service, grant awardees will be required to register with this platform and an account validation process will occur before said funds are transferred into the awardee’s account. RSM is available to assist with this registration process.
Furthermore, the following stipulations control how and when the CCGP disbursements will occur:
- One-time projects will receive 50% of their approved funding when said project is initiated and the remaining 50% will be released upon successful project completion. An Expense Verification Form will be used to document and reconcile the information contained within an applicant’s original or amended Project Request Form. One-time projects are required to submit a single, one-time project report within 30 days after each project is completed.
- On-going projects will receive equal installments of their approved funding during the duration of said project, per the agreed upon project period. An Expense Verification Form will be used to document and reconcile the information contained within an applicant’s original or amended Project Request Form. On-going projects will be required to submit interim progress reports within 30 days of each funding installment and then a final project report within 30 days of said project completion.
QUESTIONS & TECHNICAL SUPPORT
Since the entire CCGP process relies heavily on automation, as well as the collaboration of third-party service providers, applicants can expect to receive a series of automated and/or personalized email communications. When an application is successfully submitted, an applicant will receive an automated email acknowledging the receipt of that application. A similar automated email will arrive when an application has been approved. Meanwhile, project expense verification, compliance and/or reporting related emails – requesting specific and time sensitive follow up action(s) will arrive via the SignNow platform (from WECA or WEESSN staff).
For all technical support needs, specifically as it concerns the CCGP application portal, please send those requests to email@example.com . Please note, applicants are strongly encouraged to apply via a laptop or desktop computer versus attempting to use a hand-held cellular device. If you don’t have access to a computer, any of the public libraries in Rock County have laptops that are available for onsite/offsite use. These laptops serve as the anchor of the Small Business Chrome Kits, which any small business and nonprofit organization in Rock County can access free of charge from the libraries.
For questions concerning the review, compliance and/or reporting processes, please direct those questions to Chanel Clark or Kelly Matthews. Additionally, applicants are reminded to consider using the free – and customized – small business consulting services that are available through the Rock County Small Business Development Center (SBDC). These services can augment the technical support provided by the WEESSN representatives that are active througout Rock County.