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Sunnyside tables decision on day care center expansion

The Sunnyside City Staff Review Committee agreed to issue a decision by next Thursday, Dec. 21, on a conditional use permit sought by Maria and Moises Hernandez.

The couple is seeking to expand their day care business at 820 S. 15th St. into a full-fledged day care center.

The difference, according to the Sunnyside city code, is that the couple could more than double the number of children they care for.

Currently they are permitted to have 12 children but, if a conditional use permit is granted for the day care center status, they plan on watching up to 28 children.

Moises Hernandez told the committee that he is also seeking a building permit for a 240 square-foot addition to the house to accommodate the day care center.

Bob Knight, a neighboring property owner, questioned how many day care facilities there are in Sunnyside and whether they are all full.

In response, Pam Sandifer of the Sunnyside Planning Department told Knight there are 80 licensed day cares and six day care centers in the city. In addition, there are 10 more day cares that still need to be licensed.

Hernandez indicated his day care at times has a waiting list.

In response to another question from Knight, Hernandez said the day care receives funding from DSHS to cover day care costs for some parents.

In other discussion, committee member Mike Storms reminded Hernandez that the addition to the house will have to meet more code requirements if it is to be used for the proposed day care center.

Another committee member, City Planner Jamey Ayling, expressed concerns about parking arrangements related to the day care, since it is anticipated the center would generate 46 additional automobile trips per day.

Storms also sought more information as to the type of sign the center would use, if approved. Hernandez replied that it would likely be a sign attached to the side of the house.

The committee did not take action on the proposal, but agreed to further review the testimony it received and issue a decision by next Thursday, Dec. 21.

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