Bill No. SB 2146
Amendment No. 951365
Senate House

1Representative Hudson offered the following:
3     Amendment (with title amendment)
4     Remove everything after the enacting clause and insert:
5     Section 1.  Paragraph (b) of subsection (2) and subsection
6(5) of section 409.1451, Florida Statutes, are amended to read:
7     409.1451  Independent living transition services.-
8     (2)  ELIGIBILITY.-
9     (b)  The department shall serve young adults who have
10reached 18 years of age but are not yet 21 23 years of age and
11who were in foster care when they turned 18 years of age or,
12after reaching 16 years of age, were adopted from foster care or
13placed with a court-approved dependency guardian and have spent
14a minimum of 6 months in foster care within the 12 months
15immediately preceding such placement or adoption, by providing
16services pursuant to subsection (5). Young adults to be served
17must meet the eligibility requirements set forth for specific
18services in this section.
20Based on the availability of funds, the department shall provide
21or arrange for the following services to young adults formerly
22in foster care who meet the prescribed conditions and are
23determined eligible by the department. The department, or a
24community-based care lead agency when the agency is under
25contract with the department to provide the services described
26under this subsection, shall develop a plan to implement those
27services. A plan shall be developed for each community-based
28care service area in the state. Each plan that is developed by a
29community-based care lead agency shall be submitted to the
30department. Each plan shall include the number of young adults
31to be served each month of the fiscal year and specify the
32number of young adults who will reach 18 years of age who will
33be eligible for the plan and the number of young adults who will
34reach 21 23 years of age and will be ineligible for the plan or
35who are otherwise ineligible during each month of the fiscal
36year; staffing requirements and all related costs to administer
37the services and program; expenditures to or on behalf of the
38eligible recipients; costs of services provided to young adults
39through an approved plan for housing, transportation, and
40employment; reconciliation of these expenses and any additional
41related costs with the funds allocated for these services; and
42an explanation of and a plan to resolve any shortages or
43surpluses in order to end the fiscal year with a balanced
44budget. The categories of services available to assist a young
45adult formerly in foster care to achieve independence are:
46     (a)  Aftercare support services.-
47     1.  Aftercare support services are available to assist
48young adults who were formerly in foster care in their efforts
49to continue to develop the skills and abilities necessary for
50independent living. The aftercare support services available
51include, but are not limited to, the following:
52     a.  Mentoring and tutoring.
53     b.  Mental health services and substance abuse counseling.
54     c.  Life skills classes, including credit management and
55preventive health activities.
56     d.  Parenting classes.
57     e.  Job and career skills training.
58     f.  Counselor consultations.
59     g.  Temporary financial assistance.
60     h.  Financial literacy skills training.
62The specific services to be provided under this subparagraph
63shall be determined by an aftercare services assessment and may
64be provided by the department or through referrals in the
66     2.  Temporary assistance provided to prevent homelessness
67shall be provided as expeditiously as possible and within the
68limitations defined by the department.
69     3.  A young adult who has reached 18 years of age but is
70not yet 21 23 years of age who leaves foster care at 18 years of
71age but who requests services prior to reaching 21 23 years of
72age is eligible for such services.
73     (b)  Road-to-Independence Program.-
74     1.  The Road-to-Independence Program is intended to help
75eligible students who are former foster children in this state
76to receive the educational and vocational training needed to
77achieve independence. The amount of the award shall be based on
78the living and educational needs of the young adult and may be
79up to, but may not exceed, the amount of earnings that the
80student would have been eligible to earn working a 40-hour-a-
81week federal minimum wage job.
82     2.  A young adult who has earned a standard high school
83diploma or its equivalent as described in s. 1003.43 or s.
841003.435, has earned a special diploma or special certificate of
85completion as described in s. 1003.438, or has reached 18 years
86of age but is not yet 21 years of age is eligible for the
87initial award, and a young adult under 23 years of age is
88eligible for renewal awards, if he or she:
89     a.  Was a dependent child, under chapter 39, and was living
90in licensed foster care or in subsidized independent living at
91the time of his or her 18th birthday or is currently living in
92licensed foster care or subsidized independent living, or, after
93reaching the age of 16, was adopted from foster care or placed
94with a court-approved dependency guardian and has spent a
95minimum of 6 months in foster care immediately preceding such
96placement or adoption;
97     b.  Spent at least 6 months living in foster care before
98reaching his or her 18th birthday;
99     c.  Is a resident of this state as defined in s. 1009.40;
101     d.  Meets one of the following qualifications:
102     (I)  Has earned a standard high school diploma or its
103equivalent as described in s. 1003.43 or s. 1003.435, or has
104earned a special diploma or special certificate of completion as
105described in s. 1003.438, and has been admitted for full-time
106enrollment in an eligible postsecondary education institution as
107defined in s. 1009.533;
108     (II)  Is enrolled full time in an accredited high school;
110     (III)  Is enrolled full time in an accredited adult
111education program designed to provide the student with a high
112school diploma or its equivalent.
113     3.  A young adult applying for the Road-to-Independence
114Program must apply for any other grants and scholarships for
115which he or she may qualify. The department shall assist the
116young adult in the application process and may use the federal
117financial aid grant process to determine the funding needs of
118the young adult.
119     4.  An award shall be available to a young adult who is
120considered a full-time student or its equivalent by the
121educational institution in which he or she is enrolled, unless
122that young adult has a recognized disability preventing full-
123time attendance. The amount of the award, whether it is being
124used by a young adult working toward completion of a high school
125diploma or its equivalent or working toward completion of a
126postsecondary education program, shall be determined based on an
127assessment of the funding needs of the young adult. This
128assessment must consider the young adult's living and
129educational costs and other grants, scholarships, waivers,
130earnings, and other income to be received by the young adult. An
131award shall be available only to the extent that other grants
132and scholarships are not sufficient to meet the living and
133educational needs of the young adult, but an award may not be
134less than $25 in order to maintain Medicaid eligibility for the
135young adult as provided in s. 409.903.
136     5.  The amount of the award may be disregarded for purposes
137of determining the eligibility for, or the amount of, any other
138federal or federally supported assistance.
139     6.a.  The department must advertise the criteria,
140application procedures, and availability of the program to:
141     (I)  Children and young adults in, leaving, or formerly in
142foster care.
143     (II)  Case managers.
144     (III)  Guidance and family services counselors.
145     (IV)  Principals or other relevant school administrators.
146     (V)  Guardians ad litem.
147     (VI)  Foster parents.
148     b.  The department shall issue awards from the program for
149each young adult who meets all the requirements of the program
150to the extent funding is available.
151     c.  An award shall be issued at the time the eligible
152student reaches 18 years of age.
153     d.  A young adult who is eligible for the Road-to-
154Independence Program, transitional support services, or
155aftercare services and who so desires shall be allowed to reside
156with the licensed foster family or group care provider with whom
157he or she was residing at the time of attaining his or her 18th
158birthday or to reside in another licensed foster home or with a
159group care provider arranged by the department.
160     e.  If the award recipient transfers from one eligible
161institution to another and continues to meet eligibility
162requirements, the award must be transferred with the recipient.
163     f.  Funds awarded to any eligible young adult under this
164program are in addition to any other services or funds provided
165to the young adult by the department through transitional
166support services or aftercare services.
167     g.  The department shall provide information concerning
168young adults receiving funding through the Road-to-Independence
169Program to the Department of Education for inclusion in the
170student financial assistance database, as provided in s.
172     h.  Funds are intended to help eligible young adults who
173are former foster children in this state to receive the
174educational and vocational training needed to become independent
175and self-supporting. The funds shall be terminated when the
176young adult has attained one of four postsecondary goals under
177subsection (3) or reaches 21 23 years of age, whichever occurs
178earlier. In order to initiate postsecondary education, to allow
179for a change in career goal, or to obtain additional skills in
180the same educational or vocational area, a young adult may earn
181no more than two diplomas, certificates, or credentials. A young
182adult attaining an associate of arts or associate of science
183degree shall be permitted to work toward completion of a
184bachelor of arts or a bachelor of science degree or an
185equivalent undergraduate degree. Road-to-Independence Program
186funds may not be used for education or training after a young
187adult has attained a bachelor of arts or a bachelor of science
188degree or an equivalent undergraduate degree.
189     i.  The department shall evaluate and renew each award
190annually during the 90-day period before the young adult's
191birthday. In order to be eligible for a renewal award for the
192subsequent year, the young adult must:
193     (I)  Complete the number of hours, or the equivalent
194considered full time by the educational institution, unless that
195young adult has a recognized disability preventing full-time
196attendance, in the last academic year in which the young adult
197earned an award, except for a young adult who meets the
198requirements of s. 1009.41.
199     (II)  Maintain appropriate progress as required by the
200educational institution, except that, if the young adult's
201progress is insufficient to renew the award at any time during
202the eligibility period, the young adult may restore eligibility
203by improving his or her progress to the required level.
204     j.  Funds may be terminated during the interim between an
205award and the evaluation for a renewal award if the department
206determines that the award recipient is no longer enrolled in an
207educational institution as defined in sub-subparagraph 2.d., or
208is no longer a state resident. The department shall notify a
209recipient who is terminated and inform the recipient of his or
210her right to appeal.
211     k.  An award recipient who does not qualify for a renewal
212award or who chooses not to renew the award may subsequently
213apply for reinstatement. An application for reinstatement must
214be made before the young adult reaches 21 23 years of age, and a
215student may not apply for reinstatement more than once. In order
216to be eligible for reinstatement, the young adult must meet the
217eligibility criteria and the criteria for award renewal for the
219     (c)  Transitional support services.-
220     1.  In addition to any services provided through aftercare
221support or the Road-to-Independence Program, a young adult
222formerly in foster care may receive other appropriate short-term
223funding and services, which may include financial, housing,
224counseling, employment, education, mental health, disability,
225and other services, if the young adult demonstrates that the
226services are critical to the young adult's own efforts to
227achieve self-sufficiency and to develop a personal support
228system. The department or community-based care provider shall
229work with the young adult in developing a joint transition plan
230that is consistent with a needs assessment identifying the
231specific need for transitional services to support the young
232adult's own efforts. The young adult must have specific tasks to
233complete or maintain included in the plan and be accountable for
234the completion of or making progress towards the completion of
235these tasks. If the young adult and the department or community-
236based care provider cannot come to agreement regarding any part
237of the plan, the young adult may access a grievance process to
238its full extent in an effort to resolve the disagreement.
239     2.  A young adult formerly in foster care is eligible to
240apply for transitional support services if he or she has reached
24118 years of age but is not yet 21 23 years of age, was a
242dependent child pursuant to chapter 39, was living in licensed
243foster care or in subsidized independent living at the time of
244his or her 18th birthday, and had spent at least 6 months living
245in foster care before that date.
246     3.  If at any time the services are no longer critical to
247the young adult's own efforts to achieve self-sufficiency and to
248develop a personal support system, they shall be terminated.
249     (d)  Payment of aftercare, Road-to-Independence Program, or
250transitional support funds.-
251     1.  Payment of aftercare, Road-to-Independence Program, or
252transitional support funds shall be made directly to the
253recipient unless the recipient requests in writing to the
254community-based care lead agency, or the department, that the
255payments or a portion of the payments be made directly on the
256recipient's behalf in order to secure services such as housing,
257counseling, education, or employment training as part of the
258young adult's own efforts to achieve self-sufficiency.
259     2.  After the completion of aftercare support services that
260satisfy the requirements of sub-subparagraph (a)1.h., payment of
261awards under the Road-to-Independence Program shall be made by
262direct deposit to the recipient, unless the recipient requests
263in writing to the community-based care lead agency or the
264department that:
265     a.  The payments be made directly to the recipient by check
266or warrant;
267     b.  The payments or a portion of the payments be made
268directly on the recipient's behalf to institutions the recipient
269is attending to maintain eligibility under this section; or
270     c.  The payments be made on a two-party check to a business
271or landlord for a legitimate expense, whether reimbursed or not.
272A legitimate expense for the purposes of this sub-subparagraph
273shall include automobile repair or maintenance expenses;
274educational, job, or training expenses; and costs incurred,
275except legal costs, fines, or penalties, when applying for or
276executing a rental agreement for the purposes of securing a home
277or residence.
278     3.  The community-based care lead agency may purchase
279housing, transportation, or employment services to ensure the
280availability and affordability of specific transitional services
281thereby allowing an eligible young adult to utilize these
282services in lieu of receiving a direct payment. Prior to
283purchasing such services, the community-based care lead agency
284must have a plan approved by the department describing the
285services to be purchased, the rationale for purchasing the
286services, and a specific range of expenses for each service that
287is less than the cost of purchasing the service by an individual
288young adult. The plan must include a description of the
289transition of a young adult using these services into
290independence and a timeframe for achievement of independence. An
291eligible young adult who prefers a direct payment shall receive
292such payment. The plan must be reviewed annually and evaluated
293for cost-efficiency and for effectiveness in assisting young
294adults in achieving independence, preventing homelessness among
295young adults, and enabling young adults to earn a livable wage
296in a permanent employment situation.
297     4.  The young adult who resides with a foster family may
298not be included as a child in calculating any licensing
299restriction on the number of children in the foster home.
300     (e)  Appeals process.-
301     1.  The Department of Children and Family Services shall
302adopt by rule a procedure by which a young adult may appeal an
303eligibility determination or the department's failure to provide
304aftercare, Road-to-Independence Program, or transitional support
305services, or the termination of such services, if such funds are
307     2.  The procedure developed by the department must be
308readily available to young adults, must provide timely
309decisions, and must provide for an appeal to the Secretary of
310Children and Family Services. The decision of the secretary
311constitutes final agency action and is reviewable by the court
312as provided in s. 120.68.
313     Section 2.  Section 415.1114, Florida Statutes, is created
314to read:
315     415.1114  Adult protective investigations; procedures;
317     (1)  The department may transfer all responsibility for
318adult protective investigations to the sheriff of a county in
319which the abuse, neglect, or exploitation of a vulnerable adult
320in need of services is alleged to have occurred. Each sheriff is
321responsible for the provision of adult protective investigations
322in his or her county. An individual who provides these services
323must complete the training required of protective investigators
324employed by the department.
325     (2)  In order to implement the transfer of responsibilities
326for adult protective investigations, the department and a
327sheriff's office shall enter into a contract for the provision
328of these services. Funding for the services shall be
329appropriated to the department and the department shall transfer
330to the respective sheriff's office funding for the investigative
331responsibilities assumed by the sheriffs, including any federal
332funds for which a provider is eligible and agrees to receive and
333that portion of general revenue funds currently designated to
334provide those services, including, but not limited to, funding
335for all investigative positions, training, associated equipment
336and furnishings, and other fixed capital items. The contract
337must specify whether the department will continue to perform any
338adult protective investigations during the initial year and
339specify if services are to be performed by employees of the
340department or by persons appointed by the sheriff.
341     (3)  A sheriff's office that is providing adult protective
342investigations shall operate in accordance with the performance
343standards and outcome measures established by the Legislature
344for protective investigations conducted by the department.
345     (4)  Funds for adult protective investigations must be
346identified in the annual appropriation made to the department,
347which shall award grants for the full amount identified in the
348General Appropriations Act to the respective sheriffs' offices.
349Notwithstanding the provisions of ss. 216.181(16)(b) and
350216.351, the department may advance payments to a sheriff's
351office for adult protective investigations. Funds for adult
352protective investigations may not be integrated into the regular
353budget of the sheriff's office. Budgetary data and other data
354relating to the performance of adult protective investigations
355must be maintained separately from all other records of the
356sheriff's office and reported to the department as specified in
357the grant agreement.
358     (5)  The program performance evaluation shall be based on
359criteria mutually agreed upon by the respective sheriffs'
360offices and the department. The program performance evaluation
361shall be conducted by the adult protective services program in
362collaboration with the respective sheriff's office.
363     Section 3.  This act shall take effect July 1, 2011.
T I T L E  A M E N D M E N T
368     Remove the entire title and insert:
A bill to be entitled
370An act relating to the Department of Children and Family
371Services; amending s. 409.1451, F.S.; revising the age up
372to which young adults are eligible for independent living
373services; creating s. 415.1114, F.S.; transferring the
374responsibility for adult protective investigations from
375the Department of Children and Family Services to county
376sheriffs' offices under certain circumstances; providing
377contract requirements for implementation of the transfer
378of responsibilities; providing conditions for funding and
379performance evaluation; providing an effective date.

CODING: Words stricken are deletions; words underlined are additions.