Navy families in Europe face hike in child-care cost
NAVAL STATION ROTA, Spain — Child-care rates at Navy bases across Europe are going up, and higher-income families with additional children in day care will see the biggest spike.
Beginning Nov. 1, families will pay an average of $1.33 more per week, Navy officials said. Hourly fees will increase from $2.75 to $3 throughout the Navy.
It is the first rate increase for Europe in five years, said Lt. Cmdr. Lisa Braun, a spokeswoman for Navy Region Europe in Naples, Italy.
The changes affect families who use the Child Development Center, School Age Care and Child Development.
The 1.5 percent increase is due to higher inflation rates in the region, the Navy said.
Under the changes, higher-income families with more than one child in day care will lose a 20 percent discount.
That means a family making $50,000 a year with two children in day care would pay $67.60 more a month.
The discount will apply only to families in the two lowest income brackets, less than $34,000 per year.
Families who make between $34,001 and $44,000 will get a 10 percent discount.
The Navy has also changed the vacation policy for the region, Braun said.
Child-care centers no longer will keep spots open for families who go on vacation for up to four weeks.
The policy now will hold the spot only for two weeks.
Families who go on vacation for more than two weeks must pay for the additional days or the spot will be given to a family on the waiting list.
Despite the increase, European child-care rates continue to be among the lowest in the Navy.
For example, child-care fees Navywide for families making between $44,001 and $55,000 range between $77 and $102. In Europe, the cost is $78.
For incomes between $55,001 and $70,000, the cost varies from $92 to $116 per week. The European rate is $93.
“It’s going to vary for the categories, but we end up being on the lower part of the spectrum,” Braun said.