LANSING, Mich. — Today Sen. Hoon-Yung Hopgood (D–Taylor) introduced Senate Bill 182 as part of a broader package, SB 180-183, that would improve child care licensing by increasing transparency, and strengthening health and safety measures.

“Updating our child care licensing requirements will help make it easier for parents to find high quality providers,” Sen. Hopgood said. “It will also help remove fraudulent or potentially dangerous providers from the system.” 

Sen. Hopgood’s bill would require Michigan child care providers to apply for a state-issued ID in order to receive state-subsidized child care payments. The process of issuing a state ID card would help minimize fraudulent activities, increase accuracy of information, expedite background checks, and promote compliance with state and federal child care licensing laws. 

The bill also would allow for the modification of the State of Michigan website so that parents can search for state-subsidized child care providers. The website would include helpful metrics, including licensing inspections reports, corrective action plans and license expiration dates. 

Michigan’s handling of child care oversight has faced tough scrutiny over the last few years after the Michigan Office of the Auditor General revealed that approximately 1,900 “unsuitable” child care providers were authorized to receive state-subsidized child care payments. This included alleged child abusers, documented sex offenders, convicted criminals and individuals who were found to be “neglectful.”

Sen. Hopgood developed SB 182 in response to recent federal law that is designed to provide additional health and safety requirements for child care providers. The federal Child Care and Development Block Grant Act of 2014 is providing approximately $16 million to the State of Michigan so that it can update its child care licensing laws and bring them in line with federal guidelines.