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LB 503: Implementing an Alternative Response Pilot Project to a report of child abuse or neglect

As introduced: Defines alternative response as a comprehensive assessment of the risk of subsequent abuse or neglect, family strengths and needs, and the provision of a referral for necessary services and does not include an investigation or formal determination as to whether child abuse or neglect has occurred.

Investigation was defined as meaning fact gathering related to the current safety of the child and the risk of subsequent child abuse or neglect in order to determine whether or not child abuse has occurred and whether or not child protective services are needed.

The Legislature’s intent is to strengthen the family and make the home, school, and community safe for children by promoting responsible child care and to provide, when necessary,  safe temporary or permanent home for abused or neglected children.  When appropriate, an alternative response is the preferred response to reports not alleging substantial child abuse or neglect.

DHHS, in conjunction with the NE Children’s Commission, is to develop an alternative response implementation plan in accordance with this bill and is to contract with an independent entity to evaluate alternative response demonstration projects.

As Amended: N/A, however parts of this bill were amended into LB 561

Introducing Senator(s): Coash

Committee: Judiciary

Committee Hearing Date: March 15, 2013

Current Status: In committee; study of Alternative Response amended into LB 561

Estimated Fiscal Impact: FY 2013-2014: $690,000, all from the general funds FY 2014-2015: $590,000, all funds from the general funds

Voices for Children’s Position: Support

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