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S.F. No. 2641 - Modifying the Basic Monthly Rate for Northstar Care for Children (First Engrossment)
Author: Senator Kathy Sheran
Prepared By: Joan White, Senate Counsel (651/296-3814)
Date: April 8, 2016


Section 1 (256N.26, subd. 3) increases the basic monthly rate for Northstar Care for Children by 20 percent.

Sections 2 and 3 (256N.26, subd. 5, 256N.28, subd. 7) equalize monthly rates for children under age six under the kinship and adoption assistance components of the Northstar program. Current law provides 50 percent of the rate, and the change in this section provides 100 percent of the rate under section 1.

Section 4 (626.556, subd. 3c) Paragraph (b) requires the Department of Human Services (DHS) to investigate maltreatment in foster homes that are monitored by private agencies, and foster homes monitored by the county, upon agreement by the county and DHS.  This section also, in new paragraph (c), requires the Department of Human Services to investigate the death of a child in a foster care program.

Section 5 (626.556, subd. 10b) requires the Commissioner of Human Services to investigate every incident involving the death of a child during placement in a licensed child foster care home.

Section 6 (626.556, subd. 10f) makes a conforming change, resulting from changes in section 4 shifting the responsibility for maltreatment investigations of private agencies from the county to the commissioner.

Section 7 requires the expansion of allowable child protection services to include child care.

Sections 8 and 10 relate to a child care pilot program modeled after a pilot in Hennepin County for families in the child welfare system who need assistance paying for high quality child care.

Section 9 requires the commissioner to convene a working group to review the impact of removing licensing responsibilities from private agencies, and report back to the legislative committees having jurisdiction over foster care issues by January 15, 2017.

Section 11 is a blank appropriation for the parent support outreach program, which provides services to families that are “screened out” from further child protection action, but may need supportive services.

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