A lack of childcare in the village has left some parents “in tears” when looking for arrangements for their kids, Journey Above Childcare owner Jenny Cifuentes told the Village Board Monday night.

So the Cifuenteses’ are expanding their operation, adding a $2.2 million facility on Hwy. CC between Mulligans and Omni to their existing childcare center at 244 Janesville Street. After a market analysis, Jenny told the board, it became clear there was a need for both infant to 5-year-old care as well as care for “schoolagers,” especially over the summer.

The difference in programming for the age groups has left them about $16,000 short of what they need to buy appropriate equipment. Village President Jeanne Carpenter said while it’s an “admirable project,” the board is unable to help with the difference.

The village doesn’t have a mechanism for granting aid outside of a tax-increment financing district or an existing program like the one that pays for downtown facade improvements, village attorney Matt Dregne explained, saying he could look into developing such a program.

Board members Randy Glysch and Jeff Boudreau, who each have extensive experience in fundraising and nonprofits, suggested the Cifuenteses seek private fundraising, with Boudreau saying the amount is “an easy reach” for this community. Each suggested two or three possible sources, including the Oregon PTA and the Madison Community Foundation.

Contact Alexander Cramer at alexander.cramer@wcinet.com.