The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) manages about 2.1 million acres of what is called working forests and utilizes money from that use towards education, libraries, fire departments, and more.

Now, DNR is supporting a bill that would create a new public land trust to fund daycare.

House Bill passes committee

Public Lands Commissioner Hilary Franz issued a statement Wednesday, saying House Bill (HB) 2243 passed committee in the legislature, with bi-partisan support.

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The bill would take money brought in from the CCA, or Climate Commitment Act (carbon credit auctions), and use it to purchase additional lands.  Then, these lands would be set up in a public trust, much like the ones already managed by DNR.

This Child Care Land Trust money would then be used to fund daycare, according to DNR:

"DNR would acquire and manage land with Climate Commitment Act funding, and sustainably manage that land for uses such as commercial forestry, renewable energy projects, and carbon sequestration credits for reforestation to provide permanent funding for childcare Washington State."

Land trusts have been used in various forms in WA state since 1889. According to DNR:

"The new trust would direct revenue to the Washington Department of Children, Youth, and Families, which oversees the Childcare Desert Grant Program."

It appears the bulk of the funding would be directed towards child care in what DRN describes as communities with "health and economic disparities." 

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