Question: What bills were signed into law that impact foster care?

SB 1518 – signed by the Governor March 29, 2018

Overview: New report requirements for the Department of Child Safety

General Reporting Requirements
1. Requires DCS to post program and outcome data on its website in a format that can be downloaded and analyzed. (Sec. 4)

2. Requires DCS to: a. Make the semi-annual or the monthly reporting information available within 60 days after the applicable reporting period; and
b. Notify the President of the Senate, Speaker of the House, the Director of JLBC and the Director of OSPB when an update is made to the semi-annual or the monthly reporting information. (Sec. 4)

3. Requires DCS to make the following information available annually: a. The percentage of substantiations upheld by the Office of Administrative Hearings;
b. The demographics and number of children placed with relative caregivers;
c. The demographics of kinship foster caregivers;
d. Specified information on the Housing Assistance Program;
e. Children in the Independent Living Program by age, county and education status.
f. The type and cost of services provided to kinship foster care families by licensed and unlicensed caregivers;
g. The cost of services provided to kinship foster caregivers compared to the cost of out of home placement; and
h. The success of DCS at maintaining kinship foster care placements. (Sec. 4)

Semiannual Reporting Requirements

4. Requires DCS to post the following information on a semiannual basis within 90 days of the end of the reporting period: a. Success in meeting training requirements;

b. Caseloads for child safety workers;
c. The number of: i. New reports and reports that have been closed;
ii. Case carrying caseworkers in each region;
iii. Investigations by region; and
iv. Children being served in-home and out-of-home in each region.

d. The number of licensed: i. Foster homes considered kinship homes; and
ii. Community foster homes.

e. The ratio of supervisors to specialists by region; and
f. The source and use of federal and state monies in DCS. (Sec. 4)
a. Descriptions of: i. Incoming communications that do not meet the criteria of a report as chosen by a random sample; and
ii. Reports not responded to as chosen by a random sample.

b. Submission of the report to the Director of the Arizona State Library, Archives and Public Records. (Sec. 4)

5. Removes the following semiannual reporting requirements:
Monthly Reporting Requirements
6. Requires DCS to make the following information available monthly: a. Operations and workforce data that includes: i. Staff vacancy levels by position category and turnover;
ii. Specified personnel information;
iii. Hotline performance;
iv. Reports received by type of maltreatment, priority and response time;
v. Inactive cases by disposition;
vi. Open reports;
vii. Entries and exits from the foster care by exit type;
viii. Support service provision;
ix. Demographics, types of placement and case plan goals of the foster care population; and
x. The number and type of licensed foster homes that leave the system and the reason for the exit.

b. Financial data that compares: i. Total expenditures by month, year to date and prior years;
ii. Appropriation totals and projected expenditure totals, delineated by appropriation and appropriated fund source. (Sec. 4)

Child Safety Expedited Substance Abuse Treatment Fund
7. Requires DCS to make the following information available on the DCS website if the Legislature appropriates monies to the Fund: a. The number and percentage of: i. Parents and guardians who are offered and complete treatment using Fund monies; and

b. The number of: i. Children who remain with or who are returned to the parent or guardian who receives treatment paid for by the Fund and the number of cases in which this occurs; and
ii. Children who receive expedited permanent placement as a result of availability of services paid for by the Fund. (Sec. 5)

8. Requires DCS to provide expedited substance abuse treatment in collaboration with AHCCCS, rather than ADHS. (Sec. 5)
Fifty-third Legislature SB 1518 Second Regular Session Version 4: Chaptered

Reporting Requirements, Delayed Repeal
9. Requires DCS to prepare the first semiannual report by October 1, 2018 for the period beginning April 1, 2018 and ending June 30, 2018. a. All subsequent semiannual reports must be completed by April 1st and October 1st each year. (Sec. 8)

10. States that DCS must publish the outcome metrics dashboard created for the Legislative Oversight Committee on the DCS website. (Sec. 8)
11. Requires DCS to begin the following by January 1, 2019: i. Work with stakeholder to identify the necessity of required information included in the reports and any information not currently required to be included in the reports; and
ii. Report any recommended changes in reporting requirements to the House Health and Senate Health and Human Services Committee of Reference. (Sec. 8)

12. Repeals reporting requirements on October 1, 2019. (Sec. 8)

13. Authorizes DCS to place a child participating in the kinship foster care program with a person who has a significant relationship with the child. (Sec. 2)
14. Repeals and consolidates the following DCS reporting requirements: a. The Housing Assistance Program;
b. The Kinship Foster Care Program; and
c. The Independent Living Program. (Sec. 1, 2, 3, 4)

15. Repeals statute relating to financial and program accountability reports for child safety services administered by DCS. (Sec. 7)
16. Makes technical and conforming changes. (Sec. 1, 4, 5, 6)


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