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BOCA minutes – member meeting February 26, 2024 at 1:00 PM

Location of Meeting: Virtual (GoToMeeting)

In Attendance:


Rebecca Compton                   Dr. Day Care

Joseph Tomchak                     Boys & Girls Club Newport

Maria Fruci                             Boys & Girls Club Alliance / BOCA grant manager

Amy Vogel                               Dr. Day Care

Haley Paige                             Coggeshall Club/Haven Middletown

Guests & Members:

Missy Davis                             Dr Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center

Marissa Gallagher                   Hope St ELC

Denise Greene                        West End Community Center

Marlene Roberti                     Brown Fox Point

Rebecca Madden                    Little Acorns Academy

Linda Laliberte                        EBCAP

Rick McAuliffe                         Mayforth Group

Meeting Agenda:

Welcome!  This meeting will be recorded and sent to members.

BOCA Board – welcome to Haley Paige, Coggeshall Club/Haven Middletown!

Grant update: Maria Fruci, BOCA Grant Manager / Director Rhode Island Alliance of Boys & Girls Clubs

  • Timelines
  • Opportunities still available
  • Participating centers
  • Questions & answers

Lobbyist update: Rick McAuliffe, Mayforth Group

  • Updates that will affect child care
  • Priorities for the upcoming year

Review upcoming meeting dates

Member questions & discussion

Meeting Notes:

  • Amy started the meeting at 1:04 pm
  • Welcome Haley to the BOCA board
  • Maria – ready for Cohort 1. About 13 slots filled.
    • As of Friday, SkillsRI started sharing candidates to send to organizations (to see if they want to interview)
    • A few more slots open for cohort 1. If you’re still considering, talk to Maria this week
    • Simultaneously working on Cohort 2 (school age), will be hearing from Maria via email soon if you said you were interested
    • Cohort 1 – classes start officially March 26 (switched to 1 night/week, 14 weeks)
      • Participants enrolled in that cohort will be working at the same time
      • Virtual, but one night (Saturday) of in person orientation is required
    • 13 slots confirmed, goal is 15 (up to 20) so looking for 2 or 3
    • 26 applicants overall that SkillsRI is reviewing (interested in a position)
  • Amy – Lisa Hildebrand will be speaking at the March 25th meeting – Strolling Thunder, advocating to make sure the 3 programs (pandemic, salary supplement for staff, and CCAP for child care providers) that are ending in July get attention. Wants centers/people to tell their story. Showing how important these programs are, to hope to increase funding. Will send email about it to members to hopefully help RIAEYC (it can be found at
  • Rick McAuliffe – State House updates:
    • General Assembly was on recess last week, return tomorrow until April/Easter break and should finish up around June 20th
    • Session has been somewhat slow. Senate meets once/week. House meets twice/week. Will probably go up to 3 times in about a month.
    • Budget submitted late January. Warning signs that surplus in federal money is ending.
    • Universal free lunch ended in RI, MA & CT are still doing it. State doesn’t want to create new programs they can’t long-term afford.
    • 4 things to highlight:
      • teacher retention bonuses
      • legislation right now (introduced by Rep. Diaz & Rep. Shallcross Smith cosigned) to increase rates for Home and Center Based child care and increase eligibility – Bill H7124 (take effect July 1, 2024) – 1 star rate would go up to 4 star rate 
      • Rep. Shallcross Smith trying to eliminate the cost of background checks, extending free fingerprinting
      • Making progress on House & Senate – created better safety standards and background checks for non-licensed summer camp program employees (anyone that wants to take CCAP eligible children will need to follow regulations)
    • Haley Paige – is there a plan to redo the Market Rate survey? Is 2021 the most recent? Rick – will try to find out what the plan is for the next one. Joe – historically there was a rule that DHS has to be your best price (ie, private pay can’t be less), fear that the survey will show there are people charging less. Rick – hasn’t heard conversations on this, also will extra federal $ skew the data. Amy – on a childcare cost study advisory team (1st part was employee pay and benefits, 2nd part is market rate survey) but hasn’t seen it yet, after that is a cost of care study (cost of care might not be the market rate), ETA was March 2024 but not sure on current date. Amy – cost of care is higher than what we get paid, need to remind people that early childhood and school age care is essential.
  • Amy – next meeting is 3/25, Lisa Hildebrand will be speaking and Rick will also join the meeting
  • Maria – wants participation confirmed by 3/8 (emailing to say interested and then she will connect to see if you want to send a current staff vs finding new, if multiple locations – which location, and other info)
  • Denise Greene, West End Community Center – has been receiving pro-union emails, has anyone else? Joe – can send to us so we can look into it? Denise – will look to see if she still has one
  • Welcome to new members!
  • Amy closed the meeting at 1:36 pm

Next meetings:

March 25, 2024

April 22, 2024

May 2024 – TBD

June 24, 2024

Skipping July & August

September 23, 2024

October 28, 2024

November 25, 2024

Skipping December

Minutes submitted by Rebecca Compton