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Some child care regulations rolled back under bill approved by Indiana House

Dave Heine sits in a chair at his desk on the House floor, speaking with a lawmaker next to him. Heine is a White man with light brown hair, wearing glasses and a suit and tie.
Brandon Smith
/
IPB News
Rep. Dave Heine (R-New Haven) said his legislation reduces burdensome regulations "while maintaining the safety of our children."

Unlicensed child care providers in Indiana would be able to serve more children for more hours each week under legislation approved by the House.

Rep. Dave Heine (R-New Haven) said Hoosier families are spending an average of 24 percent of their income on child care. And the state has less than half of the number of child care seats it needs.

“Common sense reductions to burdensome requirements is a step in the right direction,” Heine said.

Heine’s bill, HB 1102, allows unlicensed providers to care for as many as seven children (up from five), not including any children in their care who are relatives. And it allows those providers to accept child care vouchers.

The measure also eliminates a requirement for some licensed providers that the person running it has a high school diploma or any training or experience in child care.

READ MORE: Senate committee passes bill to increase child care accessibility, remove regulations

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Rep. Vanessa Summers (D-Indianapolis) said the bill is not an acceptable solution to the state’s child care shortage.

“The only thing that I have to say is there are no burdensome regulations when it comes to children,” Summers said.

The House sent the bill to the Senate by a 75 to 21 vote, with some Democrats joining Republicans in support.

Brandon is our Statehouse bureau chief. Contact him at bsmith@ipbs.org or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

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Brandon Smith has covered the Statehouse for Indiana Public Broadcasting for more than a decade, spanning three governors and a dozen legislative sessions. He's also the host of Indiana Week in Review, a weekly political and policy discussion program seen and heard across the state. He previously worked at KBIA in Columbia, Missouri and WSPY in Plano, Illinois. His first job in radio was in another state capitol - Jefferson City, Missouri - as a reporter for three stations around the Show-Me State.