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Carbon seeks to become child care program administrator

Published November 05. 2012 05:03PM

Carbon County is hoping to become the administrator of the subsidized child care program for Carbon and Monroe counties.

During the county commissioners' meeting last week, the board voted to submit the county's best and final offer to the state Department of Public Welfare for the operations of the program. The county's total offer, which is broken down into five years in the proposal, is $4,195,089. The annual costs would cover employee salaries, indirect costs, supplies, travel, the facility, telephone, postage, and more.

Commissioner William O'Gurek explained that if the county is selected, it would oversee the program in both counties.

Earlier this year, the state announced that it had decided to consolidate the program in all counties and was looking for administrators for each region. Monroe decided not to pursue the venture while Carbon felt it could handle it.

In September, the board voted to execute and submit a proposal for administering the subsidized child care program for Carbon and Monroe counties. This was the first step in the application process for the position.

At that meeting, Amy Rontz, director of Carbon County Childcare Information Services, explained that the Child Care Program helps low income families pay for daycare while parents are working or training.

If selected, Carbon would increase its staff from three to eight to accommodate the extra work.

In other matters, O'Gurek discussed a letter that was received from Congressmen Lou Barletta in response to the board's request for help getting its prison Immigration and Customs Enforcement certified to hold illegal immigrants for a temporary period of time.

O'Gurek said he was perplexed by the response because instead of it answering questions, it reiterates what the county said and requests that the commissioners work with the county warden and mayors to find a solution.

"I thought we were asking for him to find a solution since the problem lies with an agency in the government he works for," O'Gurek said. "We were looking for a resolution and for him to try and get ICE to certify the prison."

Commissioner Thomas J. Gerhard said he also interpreted the letter as O'Gurek and agreed with the comments made.

Commissioner Wayne Nothstein, chairman, pointed out that Barletta said he would have his staff meet with the county if they wanted.

"I think we need to sit down with them to talk about this," he said.

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