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Childcare may get more expensive

By Graeme McNaughton/The Oshawa Express

The rates for regionally-operated childcare services may be going up this fall, according to a report passed by the region’s health and social services committee.

According to the report – which passed unanimously at the committee’s last meeting – the rates for the region’s seven licensed daycares will see rates go up between $0.25 and $1.00 per day, depending on the age and service provided.

The region operates two licensed daycares in Oshawa: the Clara Hughes Early Learning and Childcare Centre at Clara Hughes Public School and the Lakewoods Early Learning and Childcare Centre on Chaleur Avenue, next to Lakewoods Public School.

According to the report, the rate increase is due to the expected rise in costs for the centres to continue to operate.

“Operating budgets are continually monitored to ensure expenditures do not exceed available funding. However, the reality of maintaining quality services and programs must include adequate funding to cover increasing expenses for food, transportation, equipment and supplies,” the report reads. “Expenses for directly operated centres were budgeted to increase by nearly seven per cent in 2015. Therefore, it is essential to increase fees in relation to increasing operational costs.”

The average increase is slightly more than two per cent and will generate approximately $8,000 more in revenue for the region, according to the report.

The rate increase is still subject to the approval of the region’s finance and administration committee before going on to regional council.