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Hero Pay

OCCRRA is excited about the opportunity to support Governor DeWine’s Hero Pay initiative, which is vital to the early childhood and school-age professional workforce.

In December 2020, Congress passed the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021. The Act provided Ohio with funding to help support professionals with the pandemic. As a result, ODJFS created Hero Pay.

Hero Pay FAQs

Am I eligible for Hero Pay?

Professionals who worked in an eligible role at child care programs for the entire (excluding gaps of less than 10 days) specified quarters are eligible for a payment. Currently, the specified quarters are:

  • Quarter 1: October 1 – December 31, 2020
  • Quarter 2: January 1 – March 31, 2021
  • Quarter 3: April 1 – June 30, 2021
  • Quarter 4: July 1 – September 30, 2021

It is possible for professionals to be eligible for one or more quarters.  Employment for past quarters will not be able to be edited.

Eligible Roles include:[LIST]. These roles can be working with age groups infants through school age.

The Hero Pay payment amount is $XXX per professional per quarter.

How can I see the status of my Hero Pay quarterly eligibility and payment status?

Yes, if you are eligible, you are able to see this information in your Ohio Professional Registry Profile (OPR), Hero Pay Tab that will appear in your account.  On this tab, you will be able to see such information as:

  • Which quarters a professional is eligible for;
  • Link to complete the Payment Portal (must be completed to receive payments); and
  • Quarterly payment information
What do I need to do to receive Hero Pay payments?

To receive a Hero Pay quarterly payment, the Payment Portal must be completed.  The Payment Portal is a secure portion of the site to protect sensitive information.  The information requested in the payment portal is an IRS substitute W-9 including social security number and bank account information.  OCCRRA will be sending payments by ACH transactions to your bank account.  It is important that the name on the bank account and name on the OPR profile are the same to ensure the payment posts successfully.  As long as the same banking information is kept through the specified quarters, this information only needs to be entered once.  Professionals are able to edit bank account information by entering the payment portal from their Hero Pay tab.

If the payment status on your Hero Tab states “processing,” a professional will not be able to edit banking information as this means a payment is in process.

If payment information results in a failed payment attempt, the professional will be asked to provide banking information again.  If the payment information provided results in two failures of payment attempts, a professional will receive a check for the duration of the program quarters.

If a professional is eligible for Quarters 1-3, then they need to complete their payment portal information by July 15, 2021.  Professionals who do not provide this information timely will forfeit those quarterly payments. They still would be able to receive the Quarter 4 payment, if they are eligible.

If a check is selected for payment, please ensure the address in the OPR profile is correct as this is where the check will be sent.

When can I expect to receive my payments?

Payments to professionals will start in mid-July 2021 for Quarter 1. Please visit the Hero Pay tab in your OPR Profile for payment updates.

How often do I need to submit Payment Portal information?

If you are eligible for multiple quarters of payments, you only need to enter the information once. You may edit information by entering the payment portal from their Hero Pay tab.

I have attempted to edit my Payment Portal information but it says “Processing” and won’t let me edit the information?

If the status of your payment states processing, Payment Portal information will not be able to be edited.

I thought I was eligible but did not have my OPR profile up to date?

Per the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services child care and family child care licensing rules 5101:2-12-09 OAC for centers and 5101:2-13-09 OAC for family child care, effective September 29, 2019, individuals are required to have a profile in the Ohio Professional Registry. In addition,  in CCCMPL 24 for Child Care Centers and FCCMPL 19 for Family Child Care dated July 1, 2020 requires that all administrators, employees and child care staff members (including substitutes) must create or update an employment record in the OPR for each child care program in which they are employed.

I did not have up to date employment in the OPR, can I update it now to be eligible for past Hero Pay quarters?

No, prior quarter employment cannot be added or changed. Eligibility is determined per quarter for Hero Pay in the OPR. You will need to assure that you have up to date employment in the OPR, but it will not impact any previous quarters Hero Pay eligibility.

The first quarter I am eligible for is Quarter 3, but I am not able to access the system on July 1st?

The OPR will be down on July 1st for the Biennium conversion. Please complete your payment portal information between July 2nd and July 15th for newly eligible Hero Payment.

Is there a deadline to enter Payment Portal Information?

Yes, Payment Portal information for those professionals eligible for Quarters 1-3 must be entered by July 15, 2021. Professionals who do not enter their payment information will forfeit the Hero Pay payments.

I don’t have a banking account to enter in the Payment Portal, how can I receive my Hero Pay?

In the Payment Portal, click do not have bank account information and a check will be generated. Please ensure your address in your OPR profile is correct as that is the address the check will be mailed to.

I entered banking information into the Payment Portal but why did I receive a check instead?

If payment attempts using professional provided banking information fails twice with the banking institution, then the professional will receive checks for the remainder of the Hero Pay quarters they are eligible.

Is the money I receive for Hero Pay taxable?

OCCRRA does not provide tax advice and encourages professionals to reach out to your tax preparer regarding tax questions. OCCRRA follows the IRS guidance and will generate a Form 1099 for these funds. Hero Pay Funding is from the Federal Stimulus funding in 2021. Currently, the IRS has not provided guidance that these Stimulus funds are not taxable.

If you have additional questions that are not addressed above, please use the Contact Us page for assistance.