June 02, 2022
BATH, ME – U.S. Senator Angus King (I-Maine) today visited the Bath Area Family YMCA to see firsthand how the organization will be using $1,456,000 in Congressionally-Directed Spending (CDS) to help build a new child care center for the Bath community. Senator King secured this investment for the Bath YMCA in the recently-passed 2022 Omnibus Appropriations Package to help meet the growing demand for quality, affordable childcare. During the visit, Senator King met with YMCA leaders to discuss what this CDS investment will mean for their mission and toured their existing preschool center to see how the new funds will help expand their efforts.
“The Bath YMCA is more than just a place where children come to spend their time – it’s a community hub that sets Maine youth up for a lifetime of learning and success,” said Senator Angus King. “I was proud to secure Congressionally-Directed Spending for the Bath YMCA’s Early Learning Center to expand access to childcare for Midcoast families. These services are vital to Maine’s economy – because without affordable, reliable childcare, parents are forced out of the workforce, and businesses miss out on talented employees. I’m so grateful for all the YMCA does for Maine, and greatly enjoyed the chance to see how this new funding will help grow their fantastic programs.”
“Families in our community are struggling to find quality care for their young children and this lack of childcare is preventing parents from returning to the workforce,” says Sabrina Murphy, Bath Area Family YMCA CEO. “Thanks to the $1.5 million CDS grant, we can begin design and construction of the Y’s Early Learning Center. This project will expand the Y’s quality, accredited public Pre-K and early childhood education program and add urgently needed classrooms for infants and toddlers. This funding makes it possible for us to accommodate a growing waitlist of families, increase access to affordable, quality childcare, help parents return to the workforce, and add new early childhood education jobs to the local economy.”
Authorized in 2021 on a bipartisan basis, Congressionally-Directed Spending reflects funding priorities advocated for by a state’s Senators and Representatives, and is included in annual federal appropriations legislation to provide a specific amount of discretionary funding to a state, locality, or nonprofit organization for projects with demonstrated civic and community value. In the 2022 Omnibus Appropriations Package, which passed 68-31, Senator King secured funding for 93 Maine projects for a total of $137,252,598. The Bath Area Family YMCA’s new child care center was among these projects.
The Bath Area Family YMCA received $1,456,000 in Congressionally-Directed Spending to support the construction of a new early learning center to better serve the Bath community and to meet the regional demand for quality, affordable childcare. The Bath YMCA childcare program currently occupies three classrooms within the existing Bath Area Family YMCA building, all three of which have reached capacity for enrollment, with extensive waitlists. Their goal for this new child care center is to expand their childcare offerings, to better serve families with young children, while also continuing their long tradition of offering the highest quality of care.