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HB16-1227

Exemptions Child Support Requirements Child Care Assistance

Concerning exemptions from child support enforcement requirements as a condition of receipt of child care assistance under the Colorado child care assistance program, and, in connection therewith, making an appropriation.
Session:
2016 Regular Session
Subject:
Human Services
Bill Summary

Under current law, a county may impose as a condition of receiving low-income child care assistance under the Colorado child care assistance program (CCCAP) that an applicant who is not a Colorado works participant apply for and cooperate with child support establishment and enforcement, unless the applicant shows good cause to the county for an exemption from this requirement.

The act exempts an applicant who is a teen parent, as defined by rule of the state board, from child support cooperation requirements as a condition of receiving child care assistance until the teen parent has graduated from high school or successfully completed a high school equivalency examination. After the teen parent has been determined eligible for child care assistance and his or her chosen child care provider is receiving subsidy payments, a county may require the teen parent to regularly attend, at no cost and at a location and time most convenient to the teen parent, information sessions focused on understanding the benefits of child support to the child, the family as a whole, and the benefits of two-parent engagement in a child's life. Once a person who receives child care assistance no longer meets the definition of a teen parent or has either graduated from high school or successfully completed a high school equivalency examination, the county may require that person to cooperate with child support establishment and enforcement as a condition of continued receipt of child care assistance. Nothing in the act prevents a teen parent from establishing child support.

The act exempts an applicant who is a victim of domestic violence, a sexual offense, harassment, or stalking from child support cooperation requirements or from establishing good cause for not cooperating as a condition of receiving child care assistance. The act sets forth the requirements that a victim of domestic violence, a sexual offense, harassment, or stalking must establish to qualify for this exception.

A county may provide information about the importance of establishing child support to a teen parent or a victim of domestic violence, a sexual offense, harassment, or stalking who chooses not to engage in child support establishment and enforcement.

The state board is required to revise its rules on CCCAP to implement the exceptions from child support cooperation for teen parents and victims of domestic violence, sexual offense, harassment, or stalking.

On July 1, 2017, and every July 1 thereafter through July 1, 2025, each county department shall report to the state department information related to teen parents in CCCAP. The state board shall establish, by rule, criteria to be reported annually by each county, including but not limited to:
  • The total number of cases in each county that are receiving services from a county child support services office that involve custodial parties who are 19 years of age or younger and the number of children being served;
  • The total number of teen parents in each county that are receiving child care assistance;
  • For each teen parent receiving child care assistance in the county, longitudinal data indicating whether paternity has been established and whether child support has been established for the child and reported for the child from birth to age 4;
  • For each teen parent receiving child care assistance in the county, longitudinal data indicating whether the teen parent achieved economic self-sufficiency and avoided becoming a Colorado works participant while in school and reported for the child from the child's birth to age 4;
  • For each teen parent receiving child care assistance in the county, longitudinal data indicating the total amount and the percentage of child support collected for the benefit of the child and reported for the child from birth to age 4.

The reports filed with the state department are public records.

Upon notification that the relevant human services case management systems are capable of accommodating the exceptions from child support cooperation, the state department is required to start tracking counties' compliance. The state department shall notify counties when the human services case management systems are functional and when the tracking of compliance will begin.

The act appropriates $268,562 to the department of human services from federal child care development funds to purchase information technology services.

(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status

Introduced
Passed
Became Law

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