Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HB4304
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Full Text of HB4304  102nd General Assembly


Rep. Lakesia Collins

Filed: 2/4/2022





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2    AMENDMENT NO. ______. Amend House Bill 4304 by replacing
3everything after the enacting clause with the following:
4    "Section 5. The Children and Family Services Act is
5amended by adding Sections 5.26 and 17a-16 as follows:
6    (20 ILCS 505/5.26 new)
7    Sec. 5.26. Foster children; exit interviews.
8    (a) Unless clinically contraindicated, the Department
9shall ensure that an exit interview is conducted with every
10child age 5 and over who leaves a foster home.
11        (1) The interview shall be conducted by a caseworker,
12    mental health provider, or clinician from the Department's
13    Division of Clinical Practice.
14        (2) The interview shall be conducted within 5 days of
15    the child's removal from the home.
16        (3) The interviewer shall comply with the provisions



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1    of the Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act if the
2    child discloses abuse or neglect as defined by that Act.
3        (4) The interviewer shall immediately inform the
4    licensing agency if the child discloses any information
5    that would constitute a potential licensing violation.
6        (5) Documentation of the interview shall be (i)
7    maintained in the foster parent's licensing file, (ii)
8    maintained in the child's case file, (iii) included in the
9    service plan for the child, and (iv) and provided to the
10    child's guardian ad litem and attorney appointed under
11    Section 2-17 of the Juvenile Court Act of 1987.
12        (6) The determination that an interview in compliance
13    with this Section is clinically contraindicated shall be
14    made by the caseworker, in consultation with the child's
15    mental health provider, if any, and the caseworker's
16    supervisor. If the child does not have a mental health
17    provider, the caseworker shall request a consultation with
18    the Department's Division of Clinical Practice regarding
19    whether an interview is clinically contraindicated. The
20    decision and the basis for the decision shall be
21    documented in writing and shall be (i) maintained in the
22    foster parent's licensing file, (ii) maintained in the
23    child's case file, and (iii) attached as part of the
24    service plan for the child.
25        (7) The information gathered during the interview
26    shall be dependent on the age and maturity of the child and



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1    the circumstances of the child's removal. The
2    interviewer's observations and any information relevant to
3    understanding the child's responses shall be recorded on
4    the interview form. At a minimum, the interview shall
5    address the following areas:
6            (A) How the child's basic needs were met in the
7        home: who prepared food and was there sufficient food;
8        whether the child had appropriate clothing; sleeping
9        arrangements; supervision appropriate to the child's
10        age and special needs; was the child enrolled in
11        school, and did the child receive the support needed
12        to complete his or her school work.
13            (B) Access to caseworker, therapist, or guardian
14        ad litem: whether the child was able to contact these
15        professionals and how.
16            (C) Safety and comfort in the home: how did the
17        child feel in the home; was the foster parent
18        affirming of the child's identity; did anything happen
19        that made the child happy; did anything happen that
20        was scary or sad; what happened when the child did
21        something he or she should not have done; if relevant,
22        how does the child think the foster parent felt about
23        the child's family of origin, including parents and
24        siblings; and was the foster parent supportive of the
25        permanency goal.
26            (D) Normalcy: whether the child felt included in



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1        the family; whether the child participated in
2        extracurricular activities; whether the foster parent
3        participated in planning for the child, including
4        child and family team meetings and school meetings.
5    (b) The Department shall develop procedures, including an
6interview form, no later than January 1, 2023, to implement
7this Section.
8    (c) Beginning July 1, 2023 and quarterly thereafter, the
9Department shall post on its webpage a report summarizing the
10details of the exit interviews.
11    (20 ILCS 505/17a-16 new)
12    Sec. 17a-16. Foster Care Investigative Reports Commission.
13    (a) As used in this Section:
14    "Commission" means the Foster Care Investigative Reports
16    "Department" means the Department of Children and Family
18    "Director" means the Director of the Foster Care
19Investigative Reports Commission.
20    (b) The Foster Care Investigative Reports Commission is
21created as an executive agency of State government to
22investigate all adverse reports submitted by foster parents to
23the Department of Children and Family Services concerning the
24children placed in their care.
25    (c) The Commission shall consist of 9 members appointed by



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1the Governor with the advice and consent of the Senate.
2Members appointed to the Commission shall either (i) have a
3professional background in foster care services or a notable
4interest in foster care services or (ii) be a foster child or
5the adopted parent of a former foster child. The Commission
6shall elect its own chairperson on an annual basis. Commission
7members shall serve without compensation but may be reimbursed
8for expenses incurred in the performance of their duties. Each
9member shall serve a term of 2 years or until his or her
10successor is appointed. Vacancies shall be filled in the same
11manner as original appointments. The Commission shall meet
12quarterly at the call of the chairperson beginning as soon as
13practicable after the effective date of this amendatory Act of
14the 102nd General Assembly.
15    (d) Subject to appropriation, the Commission shall hire a
16Director and staff to process and investigate all adverse
17reports referred by the Department to the Commission as
18provided in subsection (e). The Director and staff shall also
19carry out any other powers and duties of the Commission in
20accordance with this Section and the rules adopted by the
21Commission. All staff other than the Director shall be subject
22to the Personnel Code.
23    (e) Every adverse report submitted by a licensed foster
24parent to the Department shall be sent to the Director for
25review. Upon receipt of an adverse report, the Director and
26his or her staff shall conduct an investigation to determine



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1whether the information and allegations set forth in the
2report are true or false. After the conclusion of the
3investigation, the Director shall report his or her findings
4and recommendations to the Commission in a written
5investigative summary report. The Commission shall review and
6consider the Director's findings and recommendations before
7making a final determination as to the foster parent's adverse
8report. If, after its review, the Commission determines by
9majority vote that there is sufficient evidence to believe
10that the foster parent's adverse report is false or
11inaccurate, the Commission shall issue a final written report
12that sets forth the specific reasons for why it determined the
13foster parent's report to be false or inaccurate. A copy of the
14Commission's final written report shall be sent to the
15Department to be filed with the foster child's official
16records. If, after its review, the Commission determines by
17majority vote that there is sufficient evidence to believe
18that the foster parent's adverse report it true or accurate,
19the Commission shall issue a written statement of its decision
20and send a copy of its written statement to the Department to
21be filed with the foster child's official records.
22    (f) In the course of an investigation, the Director, the
23Director's staff, and the Commission may inspect and copy any
24materials relevant to the investigation that are in the
25possession of the Department. Any information obtained under
26this Section by the Director, the Director's staff, or the



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1Commission is confidential and may not be disclosed to any
2third party unless otherwise authorized by law. Any person who
3transmits confidential information in violation of this
4Section or causes the information to be transmitted in
5violation of this Section is guilty of a Class A misdemeanor
6unless the transmittal of the information is authorized by
7this Section or otherwise authorized by law.
8    (g) The Commission shall prepare an annual report on its
9operations and submit the report to the Governor and the
10General Assembly.
11    (h) The Commission shall adopt any rules necessary to
12implement the provisions of this Section. Rules adopted by the
13Commission shall be subject to the provisions of the Illinois
14Administrative Procedure Act.
16    Section 10. The Child Care Act of 1969 is amended by
17changing Sections 2.22a and 4 as follows:
18    (225 ILCS 10/2.22a)
19    Sec. 2.22a. Quality of care concerns applicant. "Quality
20of care concerns applicant" means an applicant for a foster
21care license or renewal of a foster care license where the
22applicant or any person living in the applicant's household:
23        (1) has had a license issued under this Act revoked;
24        (2) has surrendered a license issued under this Act



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1    for cause;
2        (3) has had a license issued under this Act expire or
3    has surrendered a license, while either an abuse or
4    neglect investigation or licensing investigation was
5    pending or an involuntary placement hold was placed on the
6    home;
7        (4) has been the subject of allegations of abuse or
8    neglect;
9        (5) has an indicated report of abuse or neglect; or
10        (6) has been the subject of certain types of
11    involuntary placement holds or has been involved in
12    certain types of substantiated licensing complaints, as
13    specified and defined by Department rule; or .
14        (7) has requested a youth in care's removal from the
15    home, either orally or in writing, on 5 or more occasions.
16(Source: P.A. 99-779, eff. 1-1-17.)
17    (225 ILCS 10/4)  (from Ch. 23, par. 2214)
18    Sec. 4. License requirement; application; notice.
19    (a) Any person, group of persons or corporation who or
20which receives children or arranges for care or placement of
21one or more children unrelated to the operator must apply for a
22license to operate one of the types of facilities defined in
23Sections 2.05 through 2.19 and in Section 2.22 of this Act. Any
24relative, as defined in Section 2.17 of this Act, who receives
25a child or children for placement by the Department on a



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1full-time basis may apply for a license to operate a foster
2family home as defined in Section 2.17 of this Act.
3    (a-5) Any agency, person, group of persons, association,
4organization, corporation, institution, center, or group
5providing adoption services must be licensed by the Department
6as a child welfare agency as defined in Section 2.08 of this
7Act. "Providing adoption services" as used in this Act,
8includes facilitating or engaging in adoption services.
9    (b) Application for a license to operate a child care
10facility must be made to the Department in the manner and on
11forms prescribed by it. An application to operate a foster
12family home shall include, at a minimum: a completed written
13form; written authorization by the applicant and all adult
14members of the applicant's household to conduct a criminal
15background investigation; medical evidence in the form of a
16medical report, on forms prescribed by the Department, that
17the applicant and all members of the household are free from
18communicable diseases or physical and mental conditions that
19affect their ability to provide care for the child or
20children; the names and addresses of at least 3 persons not
21related to the applicant who can attest to the applicant's
22moral character; the name and address of at least one relative
23who can attest to the applicant's capability to care for the
24child or children; and fingerprints submitted by the applicant
25and all adult members of the applicant's household.
26    (b-5) Prior to submitting an application for a foster



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1family home license, a quality of care concerns applicant as
2defined in Section 2.22a of this Act must submit a preliminary
3application to the Department in the manner and on forms
4prescribed by it. The Department shall explain to the quality
5of care concerns applicant the grounds for requiring a
6preliminary application. The preliminary application shall
7include a list of (i) all children placed in the home by the
8Department who were removed by the Department for reasons
9other than returning to a parent and the circumstances under
10which they were removed and (ii) all children placed by the
11Department who were subsequently adopted by or placed in the
12private guardianship of the quality of care concerns applicant
13who are currently under 18 and who no longer reside in the home
14and the reasons why they no longer reside in the home. The
15preliminary application shall also include, if the quality of
16care concerns applicant chooses to submit, (1) a response to
17the quality of care concerns, including any reason the
18concerns are invalid, have been addressed or ameliorated, or
19no longer apply and (2) affirmative documentation
20demonstrating that the quality of care concerns applicant's
21home does not pose a risk to children and that the family will
22be able to meet the physical and emotional needs of children.
23The Department shall verify the information in the preliminary
24application and review (i) information regarding any prior
25licensing complaints, (ii) information regarding any prior
26child abuse or neglect investigations, and (iii) information



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1regarding any involuntary foster home holds placed on the home
2by the Department, and (iv) information regarding all child
3exit interviews, as provided in Section 5.26 of the Children
4and Family Services Act, regarding the home. Foster home
5applicants with quality of care concerns are presumed
6unsuitable for future licensure.
7    Notwithstanding the provisions of this subsection (b-5),
8the Department may make an exception and issue a foster family
9license to a quality of care concerns applicant if the
10Department is satisfied that the foster family home does not
11pose a risk to children and that the foster family will be able
12to meet the physical and emotional needs of children. In
13making this determination, the Department must obtain and
14carefully review all relevant documents and shall obtain
15consultation from its Clinical Division as appropriate and as
16prescribed by Department rule and procedure. The Department
17has the authority to deny a preliminary application based on
18the record of quality of care concerns of the foster family
19home. In the alternative, the Department may (i) approve the
20preliminary application, (ii) approve the preliminary
21application subject to obtaining additional information or
22assessments, or (iii) approve the preliminary application for
23purposes of placing a particular child or children only in the
24foster family home. If the Department approves a preliminary
25application, the foster family shall submit an application for
26licensure as described in subsection (b) of this Section. The



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1Department shall notify the quality of care concerns applicant
2of its decision and the basis for its decision in writing.
3    (c) The Department shall notify the public when a child
4care institution, maternity center, or group home licensed by
5the Department undergoes a change in (i) the range of care or
6services offered at the facility, (ii) the age or type of
7children served, or (iii) the area within the facility used by
8children. The Department shall notify the public of the change
9in a newspaper of general circulation in the county or
10municipality in which the applicant's facility is or is
11proposed to be located.
12    (d) If, upon examination of the facility and investigation
13of persons responsible for care of children and, in the case of
14a foster home, taking into account information obtained for
15purposes of evaluating a preliminary application, if
16applicable, the Department is satisfied that the facility and
17responsible persons reasonably meet standards prescribed for
18the type of facility for which application is made, it shall
19issue a license in proper form, designating on that license
20the type of child care facility and, except for a child welfare
21agency, the number of children to be served at any one time.
22    (e) The Department shall not issue or renew the license of
23any child welfare agency providing adoption services, unless
24the agency (i) is officially recognized by the United States
25Internal Revenue Service as a tax-exempt organization
26described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of



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11986 (or any successor provision of federal tax law) and (ii)
2is in compliance with all of the standards necessary to
3maintain its status as an organization described in Section
4501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (or any
5successor provision of federal tax law). The Department shall
6grant a grace period of 24 months from the effective date of
7this amendatory Act of the 94th General Assembly for existing
8child welfare agencies providing adoption services to obtain
9501(c)(3) status. The Department shall permit an existing
10child welfare agency that converts from its current structure
11in order to be recognized as a 501(c)(3) organization as
12required by this Section to either retain its current license
13or transfer its current license to a newly formed entity, if
14the creation of a new entity is required in order to comply
15with this Section, provided that the child welfare agency
16demonstrates that it continues to meet all other licensing
17requirements and that the principal officers and directors and
18programs of the converted child welfare agency or newly
19organized child welfare agency are substantially the same as
20the original. The Department shall have the sole discretion to
21grant a one year extension to any agency unable to obtain
22501(c)(3) status within the timeframe specified in this
23subsection (e), provided that such agency has filed an
24application for 501(c)(3) status with the Internal Revenue
25Service within the 2-year timeframe specified in this
26subsection (e).



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1(Source: P.A. 101-63, eff. 7-12-19.)".