Introduced Version House Bill 2399 History

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hb2399 intr
H. B. 2399

(By Delegates Amores, Mahan and Spencer)
[Introduced February 16, 2005
; referred to the
Committee on Government Organization then Finance.]

A BILL to amend the code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto three new sections, designated §5-26-9, §5-26-10 and §5-26-11, all relating to family resource centers; requiring the governor's cabinet on children and families to develop and implement a pilot plan establishing a system of family resource centers; providing for grants to local centers; and requiring oversight and monitoring.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That the code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended by adding thereto three new sections, designated §5-26-9, §5-26-10 and §5-26-11,
all to read as follows:
§5-26-9. Formulation of pilot program for implementing family resource centers.

(a) The cabinet shall formulate and implement a pilot plan to encourage the establishment of a system of local starting points family resource centers designed to meet the needs of children and their families. The plan, at a minimum shall provide:
(1) For centers that provide core services to support families, that are developmental in nature, respond to local crises and enhance students' abilities to succeed in school and families in life;
(2) That students and families who are the most economically and socially disadvantaged receive priority status for receiving services when resources are limited;
(3) That the centers are operated in collaboration with local schools, community based organizations and local service providers;
(4) That existing resources be identified and coordinated to avoid duplication of services;
(5) That each center's program follows standard guidelines set forth in this bill;
(6) That centers provide core services the communities need, as indicated by the communities through forums, focus groups and surveys, and which may include:
(A) Developmental programs for children from birth though five years of age, such as, but not limited to, starting points curricula, childcare, head start and public school preschool;
(B) After school programs and educational activities for children and youth such as third base, play group and family times;
(C) Programs to encourage parent involvement as the child's first teacher, such as parents as teachers, MIHOW and healthy families America;
(D) Information, referral and directional services;
(E) Referrals and access to health and social services;
(F) Family crisis and mental health counseling and referral;
(G) Access to adult basic education programs, including computer training and coordination with the West Virginia works programs; and
(H) Coordination of welfare to work efforts.
(7) Centers may also engage optional services in the areas of:
(A) Health and nutrition;
(B) Child care;
(C) Recreation; and
(D) Personal development.
(b) The plan in no way may diminish the opportunities for continuing the development of family resource networks, which may provide planning, coordinating and research to enhance the development of family resource centers.
§5-26-10. Grants to support family resource centers.
(a) A grant program is established to provide financial assistance to entities in establishing family resource centers. The cabinet or designee shall award the grants pursuant to this section and reasonable criteria it develops. The cabinet or designee may use any funds made available from state, federal or other source in making grants to a center.
(b) The cabinet or designee shall prepare and make grant applications available through family resource networks to local nonprofit organizations qualified under the Internal Revenue Service provisions of 26 U.S.C. 501(c)(3), schools and other qualified community-based organizations. The application shall contain detailed instructions. The cabinet or designee shall provide assistance in preparing grant applications to entities requesting assistance. The grant application shall require, at a minimum, that the applicant submit:
(1) A statement establishing need for the grant;
(2) Proposed goals and outcomes;
(3) A description of the services and programs to be provided by the center;
(4) A description of how the services and programs will be provided;
(5) A description of how the families and children will be served;
(6) A description of how a director and staff of volunteers will manage the day-to-day operation of the center;
(7) Written endorsement of other service providers that the center will use in providing services;
(8) A description of the center's local advisory board;
(9) A description of procedures to be followed to obtain parental permission for services and for sharing confidential information with other service providers. Procedures shall be developed pursuant, but not limited to, federal and state laws; (10) A plan to minimize stigma attached to children and other persons using the services provided by the center;
(11) A work plan for addressing how it will recruit, train and use volunteers;
(12) Job descriptions for staff or volunteers;
(13) A description of the center location and accessibility;
(14) A description of the hours of operation;
(15) A description of self-evaluation procedures the center will use to determine it is meeting its goals and the universal guidelines;
(16) Letters of endorsement and commitment to the center from community leaders; and
(17) Certification of grant applicant, organization, and tax status.
(c) The cabinet or designee shall establish grant application review procedures and guidelines to ensure that applications for grants are fairly reviewed and scored. At a minimum the cabinet or designee shall provide for grant proposal review teams of diverse individuals. The cabinet or designee shall appoint the reviewers. The reviewers shall review and score grant applications submitted and recommend action. The cabinet or designee shall make the final decision on grant applications. The cabinet or designee shall notify each applicant of the decision on its grant application. Grant scoring procedures shall be made available to all applicants.
§5-26-11. Oversight and monitoring of family resource centers.
(a) The cabinet or designee shall provide, or provide through contract, technical assistance and training for the centers receiving financial assistance. The cabinet or designee shall assist the centers with staff development. The cabinet or designee shall provide centrally located workshops to provide training or other educational assistance for the staff of the centers. Technical assistance and training provided shall be documented and reported to the cabinet or designee. Each grant recipient shall submit a quarterly written report to the cabinet or designee on the status of the center.
(b) The cabinet or designee shall monitor the effectiveness of the programs provided by and the administration of the family resource centers receiving assistance based on grant approval documents and predetermined quality indicators.
(c) Centers are encouraged to implement activities that provide children and families with:
(1) Ongoing mentoring or tutoring relationships with adults;
(2) Safe places to learn and grow;
(3) Marketable skills through effective education;
(4) A healthy start to life; and
(5) An opportunity to help others.
(d) The cabinet or designee shall monitor those entities receiving grants to ensure that all grant funds are expended in accordance with the provisions of the grant application and any grant approval document.

NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to require the Governor's Cabinet on Children and Families to create and implement a plan to encourage the establishment of family resource centers.

These sections are new; therefore, strike-throughs and underscoring have been omitted.
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