A national study released Monday shows the cost of child care centers in Minnesota was the third least affordable in the country last year for married parents.
The report from Child Care Aware of America says the median income for a married couple in Minnesota is $89,608 while the average cost of child care centers in Minnesota is $13,876 -- 15.5 percent of a couple's income, the third highest in the U.S.
For a single mothers in Minnesota, child care accounts for more than half of their median average income of nearly $26,000 each year.
Oregon was ranked No. 1 in the study followed by New York, which has some the most expensive child care centers in the country.
The Virginia-based nonprofit research and advocacy group says costs grew up to eight times faster than family income in 2012.
Lynette Fraga, Child Care Aware's executive director, told CNN that the rapid spike is partly due to centers also facing ballooning costs, from rising insurance rates to higher food prices.
National Public Radio said the price tag on child care in most states in 2012 was higher than a year's tuition and fees at a four-year public college.
The nonprofit calls on lawmakers to continue grants for the poorest families and reconsider budget cuts, NPR said.