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La Crosse County sends $500,000 in child care funding to 37 providers



La Crosse County has given out child care grants to 37 providers this week. 

The grants add up to $500,000 in federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. The most that any one care provider could request was $25,000. 

All of the grants were allocated to child care services outside the city of La Crosse, because the city already has its own grant program for that purpose.

County leaders also hope to add 60 child care slots at the county’s Hillview Health Care Center, after its remodeling project is complete that will convert a wing of the old nursing home into an intergenerational day center, which will be privately operated.

A portion of the child care slots at Hillview would be open to the public, with others expected to be reserved for county employees.

The county is giving money to the Learning Wagon Preschool and Childcare in Rockland, to add 15 new slots for kids.

“This funding is going to make a huge difference for my small business and for my community,” Josie Wermager, who runs Learning Wagon, said in a county news release.

The money will also help a provider in Campbell afford a radon mitigation system.

Various capital projects were eligible for the grants and applications were vetted by staff from the county, UW-Extension and two committees.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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