Estimates of Child Care Eligibility and Receipt for Fiscal Year 2006. Endnotes


1.  The estimated $12.2 billion spent through CCDF and related government funding streams in fiscal year 2006 includes an estimated expenditure of $6.8 billion in federal CCDF funds (including the Child Care and Development Block Grant, the Child Care Entitlement to States, and transfers from the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Block Grant (TANF) to CCDF), $2.5 billion in state matching and maintenance of effort (MOE) funds for CCDF, $1.2 billion in TANF funding spent directly on child care, $1.4 billion in excess TANF MOE (state child care expenditures claimed as TANF MOE to the extent such amounts are above the amounts already claimed as CCDF MOE), and $0.2 billion in Social Services Block Grant expenditures related to child care.

2.  The 2006 estimates of eligibility were produced using the Transfer Income Model exit disclaimer (TRIM), a micro-simulation model maintained by the Urban Institute under contract with ASPE.  TRIM converts annual data from the Current Population Survey (CPS) into monthly data, compares these monthly data on family income and work status to CCDF rules, and generates monthly estimates of children and families eligible for CCDF child care subsidies.  Monthly estimates are averaged to produce an average monthly estimate for the year.  The 2006 estimate of eligibility relies upon data from CPS for calendar year 2006, federally-permitted eligibility rules under CCDF, and state-defined eligibility rules in the two-year CCDF plans that were effective as of October 1, 2005.   See Oliver, H., Phillips, Katherin R., Giannarelli, L, and Chen, An-Lon, June 2002, Eligibility for CCDF-funded child care subsidies under the October 1999 Program Rules: Results from the TRIM Microsimulation Model ( for further methodological explanation of the TRIM estimates.  See Appendix I on page 7 for information on the number of children eligible for child care subsidies in previous years under federal parameters.

3.  States are given broad flexibility in deciding what is countable family income for purposes of determining a childs eligibility.  For example, states could disregard TANF payments in income eligibility determinations.  As a result, some states may serve children in families with unadjusted incomes greater than 85 percent of the state median income.  Under this federal income eligibility parameter, a family of three with an income greater than $45,000 would have been ineligible to receive child care subsidies in roughly half the states in 2006.  Though stated as annual amounts here, family income is calculated monthly and is based on the income of relevant adults.  State SMI is based on estimates published for fiscal year 2006 in the Federal Register: February 17, 2005 (Volume 70, Number 32).

4.  For this eligibility estimate HHS has defined working to include all work of one hour or more in a month.  The majority of federally-eligible children come from families where the parent or parents are employed an average of at least 20 hours per week.  An estimated 14 percent of federally-eligible children lived with a parent who was not employed an average of at least 20 hours per week in 2006.

5.  This estimate of receipt excludes about 12,400 children served in U.S. territories as well as children receiving services from only Head Start, state pre-kindergarten programs, or other early childhood programs without funding from CCDF or related government funding streams.  See Appendix I on page 7 for information on child care subsidy receipt in previous years.

6.  CCDF-funded children include children funded through federal CCDF funds, state CCDF funds, and transfers of TANF funds to the CCDF program. While some states include children other than CCDF-funded children in their child care data reports (generally because they combine funds from several funding streams into one child care program), these states also report the percentage of pooled funding coming from CCDF, and this percentage is used to estimate the CCDF-funded children.  The estimate assumes that children funded by TANF, TANF MOE, and SSBG have the same subsidy costs per child as CCDF-funded children, about $321 per month based on state-reported ACF-801 administrative data, and the same age and poverty distribution as CCDF-funded children.

7.  Poverty figures are based on 2006 poverty thresholds published by the U.S. Census Bureau, Housing and Household Economic Statistics Division.  The Census Bureau threshold is divided by twelve to create a monthly, rather than yearly, threshold.  For purposes of determining recipients poverty status for this estimate, recipient income is measured after any applicable state-determined income disregards are applied.  This estimation process likely overestimates to a small degree the number and percent of children from families below 100 percent of poverty who are served.

8.  Based on state CCDF plans submitted October 2005, recipient eligibility was redetermined every twelve months in nineteen states, every six months in twenty nine states, and monthly in two states.

9.  The range of income eligibility limits is based on state CCDF plans submitted October 2005.  Income eligibility limits reflect income adjusted for any income disregards provided in state plans (i.e., some states disregard TANF and SSI income).   Expressed in terms of state median income, state limits for initial income eligibility in CCDF plans for fiscal year 2006-2007 ranged from 34 percent to 88 percent of SMI.  This estimate of state median income for fiscal year 2006 is based on the U.S. Census Bureau calculations published in the Federal Register: February 17, 2005 (Volume 70, Number 32).  While the law restricts eligibility to children from families below 85 percent of SMI, the District of Columbia uses a method of calculating state median income that produces an estimated initial income eligibility limit of 88 percent of SMI when using the U.S. Census Bureau estimate.

10.  Some of ASPEs previous eligibility estimates excluded children age 4 and older that lived with at least one parent working between 1 and 19 hours per week.  The estimates shown in this Issue Brief include this population when it is otherwise eligible.  Had the previous methodology been used, the estimated number of children eligible under state-defined rules would have been about 3 percent lower (7,766,400 instead of 8,007,800) and the percentage of children served who were eligible under CCDF state rules would have been about 1 percentage point higher (32 percent instead of 31 percent).  This change was made to provide greater internal consistency with the numerator of the calculation, which includes all children receiving subsidies, including school-aged children living with parents working less than 20 hours per week. This change does not impact the estimated number of children potentially eligible under federal parameters.

11.  See Technical Appendix on Changes in Enrollment and Eligibility over Time from Child Care Eligibility and Enrollment Estimates for Fiscal Year 2005 ( for a description of previous changes in the estimation of eligibility and receipt.

12.  Where possible, improvements in the methodology and model for child care estimation have been applied to estimates of child care eligibility and receipt in previous years.  For this reason, prior year estimates in Appendix Figure 1 may not match estimates published in previous Issue Briefs.

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