Wednesday: Speak Out on Fairfax Home Day Care Limits
Fairfax County planning commission seeks input on proposal to raise the number of children allowed in home daycares — but even raising the limit might not be enough, providers say.
Home daycare providers and parents will have the opportunity Wednesday to speak to the Fairfax County Planning Commission about a proposed permit that would allow providers to care for more children.
But it remains to be seen if even an expanded limit will be enough to accomodate some of the area's daycares.
The Commonwealth of Virginia allows for up to 12 children in a licensed day-care.
Fairfax County ordinances allow for only seven, but providers in Fairfax can apply for a special permit that allows for a maximum of 10.
The rules are more strict in Fairfax City. Only five are allowed per single-family home, or 13 with a special use permit, according to Chris Cohen of the city's information office.
The county law was rarely enforced, so many providers took in a dozen kids, as allowed by their state licenses.
But new state regulations that require formal documentation from zoning officials will have many providers applying for special permits, so the Board is proposing raising the permit limit to 12 children.
Many providers spoke out against the ordinance during a town hall hosted by Supervisor Pat Herrity (R-Springfield) in July 2012. Since then, Supervisors have been working towards compromises.
But Herrity has said he’s not sure the modest permit adjustment will solve providers’ problems.
“I personally think we need to raise the by-right number,” said Herrity, who made a failed a motion to increase the by-right from seven to 10. “I think we’re going to end up chasing childcare providers out of the license process.”
The hearing before the Planning Commission is scheduled for 8:15 p.m. Wednesday in the board auditorium at Fairfax County Government Center.