|BILL AS PASSED BY HOUSE||2007-2008|
AN ACT RELATING TO FOSTER CARE SERVICES AND SUPPORTS
It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:
Sec. 1. 33 V.S.A. § 4904 is added to read:
§ 4904. FOSTER CARE; TRANSITIONAL YOUTH SERVICES
(a) For purposes of this section, “youth” means a person between 18 and 22 years of age who either:
(1) attained his or her 18th birthday while in the custody of the commissioner for children and families; or
(2) while he or she was between 10 and 18 years of age, spent at least five of those years in the custody of the commissioner for children and families.
(b) The department shall provide foster care services to any youth who elects to continue receiving such services after attaining the age of 18, provided that the youth is employed or attends an educational or vocational program, as defined by rule, and provided that, if the youth is working, he or she contributes to the cost of services based on a sliding scale defined by rule, unless the youth meets the criteria for an exception to the work training requirements of this section based on a disability or crisis situation established by the commissioner.
(c) The commissioner shall establish by rule programs that provide support services for youth, including housing assistance, transportation, case management services, and other services.
(d) The commissioner shall establish by rule a process for allowing any individual under the age of 22 who leaves state custody between 16 and 18 years of age or any youth, as defined in subsection (a) of this section, to reinstate some level of support services, provided he or she voluntarily requests additional support services.
(e) The commissioner shall establish a method for measuring, evaluating, and reporting the outcomes of transitional services provided under this section.
* * * Health Care Coverage * * *
Sec. 2. HEALTH CARE COVERAGE; STUDY
(a) The agency of human services, in consultation with the joint fiscal office, shall analyze the cost of providing coverage for health services through Medicaid or Dr. Dynasaur:
(1) for youth who otherwise meet the eligibility requirements for the programs and meet the following criteria:
(A) An individual who meets the definition of “youth” in subsection 4904(a) of Title 33;
(B) An individual up to the age of 21 if the individual has a developmental disability as defined in subdivision 8722(2) of Title 18 or has a severe emotional disturbance as defined in subdivision 4301(3) of Title 33.
(C) An individual who meets the broader federal definition of developmental disability as provided in the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act of 2000, 42 U.S.C. 15002 Sec. 102(8);
(D) An individual 18 years of age or older who is a full-time student in a secondary school or attending an equivalent level of vocational or technical training, and is reasonably expected to complete the educational program before reaching the age of 19 or is not expected to complete the educational program before reaching age 19 solely due to a documented disability.
(2) if the clinical eligibility standards for the adult community rehabilitation and treatment (CRT) program were modified to deem the treatment history criterion to be met if an individual has received wraparound services for a severe emotional disturbance as defined in subdivision 4301(3) of Title 33 within the prior 12 months.
(b) The agency shall report the results of the analysis, including the number of individuals included in the estimates and the per-member per-month cost for each group, to the senate committees on appropriations and on health and welfare and the house committees on appropriations and on human services no later than November 30, 2007.
Sec. 3. 33 V.S.A. § 1901(f) is added to read:
(f) The secretary shall not impose a co-payment requirement for individuals under 21 years of age enrolled in Medicaid or Dr. Dynasaur.
Sec. 4. MEDICAID; TRANSITION BETWEEN PROGRAMS; YOUTH
(a) The agency of human services shall consult with advocacy organizations that represent children’s issues or that represent issues relating to individuals with disabilities on the content of the notices to be sent regarding the eligibility review and transition from Medicaid or Dr. Dynasaur to another program when a youth becomes ineligible for coverage due to age. The agency shall assist a youth in state custody in applying for health care coverage by completing the application on the youth’s behalf and ensuring that the necessary documentation is provided to ensure a seamless transition to another health care coverage program.
(b) For youth who are not eligible for Medicaid or Dr. Dynasaur due to age, the agency of human services or designee shall report to the general assembly not later than November 30, 2007 the costs and strategies for implementing a program to ensure that a youth aged 18 up to 21 living with parents is considered a separate household from the youth’s parents for the purposes of both the parents’ and the youth’s eligibility for Medicaid and the Vermont health access plan.
Sec. 5. REPORT ON HEALTH CARE COVERAGE
Not later than November 30, 2007, the agency of human services shall provide the house committee on human services and the senate committee on health and welfare with a report on the number of youths who successfully transitioned from Medicaid or Dr. Dynasaur to another source of health care coverage after losing eligibility for Medicaid or Dr. Dynasaur due to age. The report shall also include the number of youths who became uninsured after losing eligibility for Medicaid or Dr. Dynasaur due to age and the reason why the youths were not eligible for Medicaid, the Vermont Health Access Plan, Catamount Health, Catamount Health Assistance, or an employer‑sponsored insurance program.
* * * Transitional Services for Youths with Developmental Disabilities * * *
Sec. 6. STUDY ON TRANSITIONAL SERVICES FOR YOUTHS
The secretary of administration, in consultation with the secretary of human services, the commissioner of labor, the commissioner of disabilities, aging, and independent living, and the commissioner of education, shall study the costs and benefits of providing necessary transitional services up to age 22 for a youth who has a functional developmental disability and has been receiving state-funded services or services under an individualized education program (IEP) on the youth’s 18th birthday; or has been receiving state-funded services for severe emotional disturbance on his or her 18th birthday, in order to assist the youth in becoming a self-sufficient adult. The secretary of administration shall solicit and summarize in his or her final report input from consumers, providers, and representatives of disability organizations, including the Vermont federation of families for mental health, the Vermont coalition of disability rights, the Vermont council of developmental and mental health services, and the Vermont developmental disabilities council. The secretary of administration shall report the results of this study to the house committee on human services and the senate committee on health and welfare not later than November 30, 2007.
* * * Effective Date * * *
Sec. 7. EFFECTIVE DATE
This act shall become effective upon passage for the purposes of allowing the agency of human services to adopt or amend rules and to implement subsection (a) of Sec. 4. The provisions in this act relating to health care shall be implemented not later than January 1, 2008, subject to federal approval, if required. Otherwise, the provisions in this act shall be implemented not later than October 1, 2007.
The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street