“The funding is for 2022,” said Turner, a Dayton Republican. “That would include design and also site prep. As you’ve seen with NASIC, it’s just in steel now. And that’s not because it’s a complex building; that’s just how far, how long it takes — there are environmental assessments that have to be done.”
“It’s going to take several years,” he added, referring to the child development construction project.
U.S. Rep. Chris Stewart, R-Utah, who toured NASIC and the base with Turner before meeting the press, said this kind of project is important for military families.
“If your work ... is very important for national security, you need to find a way for those parents to come to work and feel very comfortable,” said Stewart, a member of the House Appropriations Committee. “If their own child care center is closed down and they’re just not able to find that kind of help, that’s a real national security concern.”
Military documents obtained by this newspaper in June pointed to problems at the current off-base child care facility in Riverside, including “issues with deteriorating structural systems, failing utilities, and insect and vermin infestation (which) detract from the ability to provide quality care and results in excessive service calls and causing the shutdown of child care activities in some cases.”
The 88th Air Base Wing, the unit that acts as landlord for the sprawling Air Force base, said children have not been at risk at any of the base’s child care centers.
“We’re expanding the facility, making it safer, bringing it on base,” Turner said.