Sharing a letter send to Governor Hogan’s office this morning and state representatives this afternoon from Ruthi Claytor, Owner, Grannie Annie’s Child Care & Learning Center Cozy Care, Quality Education.
I own a child care center in Pasadena, MD. We are currently operating under the Essential Personnel Child Care program with 20% capacity and 30% of staff. We have not yet received any funding from the state and this is our 4th week open under the EPCC plan.
After the State Superintendent of Education said that child care centers charging families who are not attending was untenable and unreasonable, I stopped charging any of our families any tuition. I have been counting on the loans and grants I have applied for to get approved. As of Friday April 17, 2020, I had $9.24 in my business bank account. There are no reserves left.
The Paycheck Protection Program Loan was going to be my saving grace. I applied as soon as my bank opened the portal on their website. The funds have been depleted. I have been reading that much of the money has gone to big businesses, especially restaurants (who have the ability to change their business model to remain viable during a shut-down, I cannot change my business model–we can’t offer “carry-out” or grocery delivery services).
Just to name a few of the businesses reporting their loans: Ruth’s Chris $20mil, Potbelly Sandwiches $10mil, Shake Shack $10mil. That $40mil could have funded 800 small businesses at $50K each. My requested PPP loan was $51,000, and I could make do with much less.
I implore you to not forget about child care centers. We are part of the critical infrastructure for people to go back to work. If I don’t receive funding soon, I will have to close, taking my current 15 families (who are all Essential Personnel) out of the work force. And if I can’t reopen, where will my 72 regular families leave their children so they can get back to work. Every Child Care Center in Pasadena had a waiting list for care before the pandemic hit. We have to be here when parents go back to work.
At the State level, please provide assistance to Child Care Central in processing the almost 4000 invoices they received for the Essential Personnel Child Care programs that are operating and waiting for the promised funds. At the Federal level, please include dedicated funding for Child Care Programs during this crisis, and include Child Care Personnel in the “Heroes Fund” as we are not only front line workers, we are at greater risk because we do not have access to PPE as hospitals do.
Grannie Annie’s Child Care & Learning Center
Cozy Care, Quality Education
2 Carvel Court
Pasadena MD 21122