Committee on Children

JOINT FAVORABLE REPORT

Bill No.:

SB-894

Title:

AN ACT ESTABLISHING THE STATE OVERSIGHT COUNCIL ON CHILDREN AND FAMILIES.

Vote Date:

3/7/2017

Vote Action:

Joint Favorable Substitute

PH Date:

2/28/2017

File No.:

SPONSORS OF BILL:

Introduced by Committee on Children

REASONS FOR BILL:

To increase the independence and transparency of Department of Children and Families Oversight.

***Substitute language as contained in LCO # 5019, expands Council membership and specifies the contents of and procedure for annual presentations and reporting.***

RESPONSE FROM ADMINISTRATION/AGENCY:

Sarah Eagan, Child Advocate, State of Connecticut Office of the Child Advocate:

Testified in support of this bill. As the state moves closer to compliance with the federally approved outcome measures of the Juan F. Consent decree, it is imperative that a legislative structure be in place that can set child welfare priorities.

Joette Katz, Commissioner, Department of Children and Families: Testified in support of the bill. Suggests the reporting requirement be made a one-time requirement rather than annual as DCF currently has over 30 separate annual reports required by statute.

Christine Rapillo, Office of the Chief Public Defender: Testified in support of this bill. The child protection system will benefit from the creation of this council.

State of Connecticut Judicial Branch: Does not believe that it would be appropriate for the Judicial Branch to be a part of the State Oversight Council on Children and Families.

NATURE AND SOURCES OF SUPPORT:

Dr. Lauren Ruth, CT Voices for Children: strongly supports the intent of this bill; believing it will strengthen the state's ability to protect and provide for its children.

NATURE AND SOURCES OF OPPOSITION:

None Expressed

Reported by: Diane Arroyo, Assistant Clerk

Alessandra Burgett, Clerk

Date: 03/08/2017