F.C. Council OK’s 2-Year Extension of Child Care Lease

Emerging from a closed negotiating session involving the Falls Church City-owned Child Development Center Monday, the F.C. City Council approved a resolution authorizing City Manager Wyatt Shields to sign a two-year lease extension at a rent of $3,000 per month with Easter Seals day care program.

In effect act of Dec. 1, it will extend through November 2013. The dramatic development reversed earlier harsh terms demanded by the City that sought to extract “fair market value” from the property in N. Cherry St. which would have forced the day care program, serving more than 70 children, to be expelled from the site on Nov. 11.

Following on news of the new terms Monday night, F.C. resident Stuart Rubin, a leader among the parents who fought to keep the day care center running, said, “The City has taken a lot of lumps lately, but this vote is a win.” Other parents, there to make last-minute appeals for a lease extension, also expressed thanks. City Manager Wyatt Shields confirmed that the City’s School System continues to have an interest in the eventual use of the building. The deal involves the continuing responsibility for facility upkeep to fall to Easter Seals. Mayor Nader Baroukh said the deal involved an “arduous effort” that found a middle ground. Vice Mayor David Snyder called it “a difficult balance.”

The only “no” vote, Councilman Ira Kaylin, said he was troubled by the lack of transparency by the Easter Seals organization. The vote was 4-1 (Kaylin no, Gardner, Peppe absent).