McCook is leading the charge in innovative programs to boost early childhood quality and access through Local Option Municipal Economic Development Funds, known as LB840.
Passed by the Nebraska Legislature in 1991, LB840 authorized cities and villages to collect and appropriate tax dollars, including sales and/or property tax, for economic development purposes if approved by local voters.
Administered by the McCook Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) and funded through city sales tax, McCook added early child care and education programs as qualifying businesses to its LB840 plan in 2019.
LB840 plans are highly localized and can be used for a variety of eligible businesses and activities. McCook is using the funds to incentivize providers to increase availability of care slots, support quality initiatives and train the next generation of early childhood professionals. For example, MEDC partnered with the Mid-Plains Community College to offer scholarships for students studying early childhood education.
In our second installment of Economic Development for Early Childhood: LB840 in McCook, Mike Feeken interviews Milva McGhee, early childhood community coordinator at MEDC. Milva and Mike chat about how child care was added to McCook’s plan and share insights into how the funding is helping strengthen McCook’s early childhood infrastructure.
Want to learn more about Local Option Economic Development Funds (LB840)? Watch our first installment: Economic Development for Early Childhood: Understanding LB840.