Signed Bill Increases State Funding for Developmental Preschools

Signed Bill Increases State Funding for Developmental Preschools

SweetwaterNOW file photo

SWEETWATER COUNTY — The Sweetwater County Child Developmental Center will see an increase in state funding following Gov. Mark Gordon signing Senate File 19, which deals with funding for developmental preschools.

This act modifies the per child amount and student counts used to calculate and distribute payments to service providers assisting children, from birth through the age of five, with developmental delays or that require special education under the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. The bill will go into effect on July 1.

The CDC reported to SweetwaterNOW in December 2023 that the CDCs across the state were receiving an average of $8,670 per child to provide preschool, OT, PT, Speech, cognitive skill development, transportation, facility maintenance, and more. SF19 will bump that amount per child up to about $12,000.

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“SF19 will impact our CDC greatly over the next several years,” Lori Lucero, Sweetwater County CDC Executive Director, said. “While we don’t yet have the exact amount for the external cost adjustment, due to the Governor not signing the budget, we do know that after the biennium the per child amount will go up to $12,000.”

The act states that it will appropriate $16,387,104 from the general fund to the Department of Health to be allocated in accordance with the revised amounts and student counts.

Prior to the signing of this bill, the CDC said in December that the Jackson, Cheyenne, and Lander/Riverton CDCs would have to start the closing process.

“This [bill] gives the CDCs the opportunity to compensate staff appropriately, provide additional programming for children, and continue to maintain our facilities for the children we serve,” Lucero said.