A bill that would have allowed public school facilities to be used as day care centers was narrowly defeated in the House Thursday, but supporters hope to bring the issue to another vote.
Despite an effort to round up representatives who had wandered off the floor, Rep. David Jones, D-Salt Lake, was still two votes short of getting his bill, HB158, passed. So Rep. Kelly Atkinson, D-West Jordan, switched his vote from for to against the bill, then asked that it be reconsidered. The maneuver will allow the bill to be brought up again if the additional votes needed are secured.Child-care providers would have had an opportunity to negotiate the use of school facilities with local authorities under HB158 for a fee that would cover utility and other costs. Jones said making additional space available would help increase the availability of day care. He said some 15,000 children in Utah are either left unsupervised or placed in unlicensed day care centers.