SACRAMENTO – Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today signed legislation to help protect the most vulnerable Californians – homeless children and adults and foster youth.
The Governor signed the following bills:
• AB 346 by Assemblymember Mark Stone (D-Scotts Valley) – This bill establishes “runaway and homeless youth shelters” (RHYS) as a new subcategory of group homes under the Community Care Facilities Act (CCFA), requiring licensure by the Department of Social Services (DSS), as specified.
• AB 652 by Assemblymember Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco) – This bill provides that the fact that a child is homeless or an “unaccompanied minor,” as specified, is not, in and of itself, a sufficient basis for triggering the mandatory child abuse or neglect reporting laws.
• AB 787 by Assemblymember Mark Stone (D-Scotts Valley) – This bill makes clarifying and technical changes to the California Fostering Connections to Success Act (Act) to ensure the continued implementation of the Act.
• AB 873 by Assemblymember Ed Chau (D-Monterey Park) – Makes changes to the Emergency Housing Assistance Program (EHAP) for homeless individuals.
• AB 1109 by Assemblymember Susan Bonilla (D-Concord) – This bill would provide that when property is transitioned from an emergency shelter or transitional housing to permanent affordable housing, as specified, and serves people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, an existing loan may be deferred and forgiven, as if the property had remained an emergency shelter or transitional housing.
• AB 1133 by Assemblymember Holly J. Mitchell (D-Los Angeles) – This bill requires that when determining the placement of a foster child who is medically fragile, priority consideration be given to placement with a foster parent who is an individual nurse provider (INP), and who provides health services under the federal Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnosis and Treatment (EPSDT) program, unless the child has the option of placement with a relative, as specified.
• SB 177 by Senator Carol Liu (D-La Canada Flintridge) – Requires the State Interagency Team on Children and Youth to develop policies and practices to support homeless children and youths and to ensure that child abuse and neglect reporting requirements do not create barriers to school enrollment and attendance, as specified. This bill also extends to homeless children or youths existing requirements specific to foster youth, which require those students be immediately enrolled in school and deemed to meet all residency requirements for participation in interscholastic sports or other extracurricular activities.
• SB 342 by Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco) – Allows a foster youth to request a private conversation with his or her social worker or probation officer and ensures that foster youth are visited periodically in their home placements.
• SB 347 by Senator Jim Beall (D-San Jose) – Allows a county to repurpose unexpended bond funds initially awarded for the construction of shelters for abused and neglected children under the Youth Center and Youth Shelter Bond Act of 1988, and instead use those funds for shelters for runaway or homeless youth. Exempts a county from repayment penalties if expended funds were repurposed for runaway or homeless youth shelters.
• SB 522 by Senator Ben Hueso (D-San Diego) – Clarifies liability coverage of the Foster Family Homes and Small Family Home Insurance Fund, to provide greater liability protection for foster parents when a foster child is injured, subject to specific exceptions.
For full text of the bills, visit: http://leginfo.ca.gov/bilinfo.html.