By Theresa Woelk
The Hermiston community, along with other towns in Umatilla and Morrow counties, has grown by leaps and bounds through the past 10 years. Unfortunately, not all services have grown to match the increase in population.
Communities in the two counties face a shortage in child care that increases each year. The number of working parents is quickly outpacing the number of child care spots available in the area.
Starla Halverson, director of Child care Resource and Referral, noted that Boardman and Hermiston have been particularly hard hit, but the shortage persists in most communities in the west end of Umatilla County and Morrow County.
Hermiston has grown so quickly, she said. I dont feel the child care base has grown with it. I get a lot of calls from parents who are looking at moving to this area and need child care.
Mary Loomis has been in the child care business for 27 years and she has seen the demand increase each year.
(For the full story, please see the January 8, 2002 issue of the Hermiston Herald.)