Biden Daycare Proposal Would Act Like $27,000 Tax on Many Middle-Class Families

(p. A17) Child care is already a major expense for parents, and President Biden pledges to reduce its cost with his multitrillion-dollar Build Back Better bill. Yet while some of those who receive government subsidies may see reduced costs, millions of other working parents could see their child-care costs double. The new program would act like a $20,000 to $30,000 annual tax on middle-income families.

The bill’s latest draft proposes to reinvent child care with a trifecta of cost-increasing forces. First, it would remove much of the incentive to offer lower-cost care.

. . .

Second, providers would need extra staff to comprehend and comply with all the new statutes, certifications and agency rules.

. . .

Third, the bill imposes “living wage” regulations on staff pay.

. . .

. . ., Build Back Better could increase costs by more than 120%. For a family with an infant and a 4-year old, that would be an additional annual expense of up to $27,000 if they don’t qualify for subsidies. In 2022, when the subsidy is only available to those earning no more than their state’s median income, that would be half of families currently using child care. Even in 2024 when the subsidies would be more generous, more than a quarter of families using such child care would be paying more than double of what they do now.

For the full commentary, see:

Casey Mulligan. “Biden Would Make Daycare Even Pricier.” The Wall Street Journal (Friday, Dec. 10, 2021): A17.

(Note: ellipses added.)

(Note: the online version of the commentary has the date December 9, 2021, and has the title “Biden Would Make Daycare Even More Expensive.”)

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