Representative Michaelson Jenet, sponsor, presented House Bill 20-1028 and requested that the bill be postponed indefinitely. This bill requires the School Safety Resource Center in the Department of Public Safety (DPS) to convene a working group of stakeholders to study the issue of the availability of residential mental health treatment for children and youth. The working group must include representatives from the Department of Education, the Department of Public Health and Environment, the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing, local school districts, the Department of Human Services, county departments of human or social services, medical providers, and residential treatment providers. The working group must address the issues of:
• the number of children and youth for whom the state provided residential treatment;
• the number of children and youth who were in need of residential treatment;
• the costs associated with providing additional residential treatment beds;
• the options available to assist schools in handling children and youth who are in need of services; and
• developing a plan for identifying, securing, and making fully operational additional residential treatment beds.
The bill requires the School Safety Resource Center to do this work within existing resources, and to present the report to the General Assembly during the DPS SMART Act presentation in 2021.