Connecticut Seal

General Assembly

 

Substitute Bill No. 1106

    January Session, 2011

 

*_____SB01106ED____032411____*

AN ACT CONCERNING THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE DEPARTMENT OF EARLY EDUCATION AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT AND A COLLECTIVE BARGAINING PROCESS FOR FAMILY CHILD CARE PROVIDERS.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. (NEW) (Effective July 1, 2014) (a) There is established the Department of Early Education and Child Development. The department head shall be the Commissioner of Early Education and Child Development, who shall be appointed by the Governor in accordance with the provisions of sections 4-5 to 4-8, inclusive, of the general statutes, as amended by this act, with the powers and duties as prescribed in said section 4-8 of the general statutes.

(b) The Department of Early Education and Child Development is the designated agency to administer and operate school readiness programs, Head Start programs, the family resource center program, established pursuant to section 10-4o of the general statutes, as amended by this act, child care programs, facilities and licensing, the birth-to-three program, established pursuant to section 17a-248 of the general statutes, as amended by this act, professional development activities relating to early childhood education and other relevant early childhood programs and services.

(c) The Department of Early Education and Child Development shall adopt regulations in accordance with chapter 54 of the general statutes to carry out the provisions of sections 1 to 5, inclusive, of this act.

(d) The commissioner may employ necessary staff, within available appropriations. Such necessary staff of the Department of Early Education and Child Development shall be in the classified state service.

(e) The commissioner may enter into contracts for the furnishing by any person or agency, public or private, of services necessary for the proper execution of the duties of the department subject to the approval of the Attorney General in accordance with law.

(f) Except as otherwise limited by the provisions of chapter 10 of the general statutes, the commissioner may accept contributions, grants, gifts, donations, services or other financial assistance from any governmental unit, any public agency or the private sector. The commissioner is authorized to apply for, receive and distribute any federal or private funds or contributions available for training and education of personnel.

(g) The commissioner may perform any other acts that may be necessary and appropriate to carry out the functions of the department as set forth in sections 1 to 5, inclusive, of this act and chapters 8, 10, 10a, 12, 17a, 17b and 19a of the general statutes.

(h) The commissioner shall submit to the Governor and the General Assembly an annual report relating to the activities, recommendations and accomplishments of the department, in accordance with the provisions of section 11-4a of the general statutes.

Sec. 2. (NEW) (Effective July 1, 2014) (a) The Department of Early Education and Child Development shall (1) create a unified set of reporting requirements for the programs described in subsection (b) of section 1 of this act, for the purpose of collecting the data elements necessary to perform quality assessments and longitudinal analysis; (2) compare and analyze the data collected pursuant to subdivision (1) of this subsection with the data collected in the state-wide public school information system, pursuant to section 10-10a of the general statutes, for population-level analysis of children and families; (3) develop and update appropriate early learning standards and assessment tools for children age birth to five years, inclusive, that are age and developmentally appropriate and that are aligned with existing learning standards as of July 1, 2014, and assessment tools for students in grades kindergarten to twelve, inclusive; (4) continually monitor and evaluate all early childhood education and child care programs and services, focusing on program outcomes in satisfying the health, safety, developmental and educational needs of all children; (5) develop indicators that assess strategies designed to strengthen the family through parental involvement in a child's development and education, including children with special needs; (6) increase the availability of early childhood education and child care programs and services and encourage the providers of such programs and services to work together to create multiple options that allow families to participate in programs that serve the particular needs of each family; (7) provide information and technical assistance to persons seeking early childhood education and child care programs and services; (8) assist state agencies and municipalities in obtaining available federal funding for early childhood education and child care programs and services; (9) provide technical assistance and consultation to licensed providers of early childhood education and child care programs and services and assist any potential provider of such programs and services in obtaining the necessary licensure and certification; (10) create, implement and maintain a quality rating and improvement system that covers home-based, center-based and school-based early child care and learning; (11) maintain a system of accreditation facilitation to assist early childhood education and child care programs and services in achieving national standards and program improvement; (12) assist in the expansion of municipal and regional capacity to develop and implement the early education and child development system, as described in section 3 of this act; (13) create partnerships between state agencies and philanthropic organizations to assist in the implementation of the early education and child development system; (14) facilitate the establishment and maintenance of local and regional early childhood councils, as described in section 3 of this act; (15) align the department's policy and program goals with those of the Early Childhood Education Cabinet, pursuant to section 10-16z of the general statutes, as amended by this act, and the Head Start advisory committee, pursuant to section 10-16n of the general statutes, as amended by this act; (16) ensure a coordinated and comprehensive state-wide system of professional development for providers of early childhood education and child care programs and services; and (17) provide funds for the development and administration of comprehensive early childhood councils, as described in section 3 of this act, including creating incentives for regional and intermunicipal approaches.

(b) The Department of Early Education and Child Development shall, in consultation with the Departments of Social Services, Public Health, Education, Children and Families, Developmental Services and Higher Education, coordinate the provision of early childhood education and child care programs and services, including, but not limited to, home visitation services, nutrition and food services, early screening and intervention services, family support, literacy and engagement services, early language development services and any other services necessary to promote the health and well-being of the mother, father and child age birth to eight years.

Sec. 3. (NEW) (Effective July 1, 2014) (a) The Department of Early Education and Child Development shall establish an early education and child development system to improve child health, safety and learning. The department shall consolidate existing early childhood education and child care programs and services serving children ages birth to eight, inclusive, into a coordinated system that attempts to (1) increase oral language development, (2) reduce the academic achievement gap, (3) increase participation in school readiness programs, (4) decrease special education placements, and (5) increase parent engagement, family literacy and parenting skills.

(b) The early education and child development system shall (1) develop family-centered services that assist families in their communities; (2) utilize asset-based and strength-based approaches; (3) provide families with opportunities for choice in services including quality child care; (4) integrate early childhood education and special education services; (5) ensure that services and systems are culturally relevant to those families receiving such services from such systems; (6) emphasize targeted research-based interventions; (7) organize services into a coherent system; (8) establish a comprehensive and accessible delivery system for early childhood education and child care services; (9) focus on performance measures to ensure that services are accountable, effective and accessible to the consumer; (10) pursue funding from private donors and organizations; (11) promote universal access to school readiness programs; (12) ensure nonduplication of monitoring and evaluation; (13) encourage and promote the establishment of local and regional early childhood councils, in accordance with the provisions of subsection (c) of this section, that implement local and regional birth-to-eight systems; and (14) any other activities that will assist in the provision of early childhood education and child care programs and services.

(c) The department, through the early education and child development system, shall assist municipalities in establishing local and regional early childhood councils. Such early childhood councils shall (1) develop and coordinate a comprehensive plan for an early childhood system for their community, and (2) utilize local, state and private resources to implement the comprehensive plan. Such early childhood councils may perform or supersede the functions of school readiness councils, as described in section 10-16r of the general statutes, as amended by this act, including, but not limited to, (A) policy and program planning; (B) systems development; (C) encouragement of community participation, emphasizing substantial parental involvement; (D) data collection, analysis and evaluation with a focus on program and service outcomes; and (E) the allocation of resources.

(d) For purposes of this section, the department may seek funding from private and philanthropic organizations and may enter into agreements with such private and philanthropic organizations to assist in the planning and implementation of the early education and child development system.

Sec. 4. (NEW) (Effective July 1, 2014) (a) The Department of Early Education and Child Development may enter into agreements with other state agencies for the purpose of coordinating early childhood education and child care programs and services. Such agreements may (1) identify opportunities to align such programs and services to meet the needs of children and families; (2) implement an accountability framework to measure program and services outcomes; (3) identify common requirements for funding from various sources and any waiver provisions related to such requirements that can be accommodated by the agreement; (4) identify barriers under state or federal law to the effective utilization of interagency agreements; (5) work with qualified local and regional planning groups to determine the most effective means of structuring agreement requirements; and (6) focus agreements to areas including, but not limited to, maternal and child health, literacy, family support and early childhood education and child care.

(b) The department shall include in all contracts with providers of early childhood education and child care program and services a provision requiring such providers to participate in any existing interagency agreement developed pursuant to this section.

Sec. 5. (NEW) (Effective July 1, 2014) On or before February 1, 2015, and annually thereafter, the Department of Early Education and Child Development shall report, in accordance with the provisions of section 11-4a of the general statutes, to the joint standing committees of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to appropriations and the budgets of state agencies, education, higher education and employment advancement, human services and public health on the progress made toward achieving the objectives of the early education and child development system, established pursuant to section 3 of this act, for children ages birth to eight years, inclusive, and the implementation of interagency agreements, as described in section 4 of this act, with particular attention to child outcomes and a continuum of quality services.

Sec. 6. Section 4-5 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

As used in sections 4-6, 4-7 and 4-8, the term "department head" means Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management, Commissioner of Administrative Services, Commissioner of Revenue Services, Banking Commissioner, Commissioner of Children and Families, Commissioner of Consumer Protection, Commissioner of Correction, Commissioner of Economic and Community Development, Commissioner of Early Education and Child Development, State Board of Education, Commissioner of Emergency Management and Homeland Security, Commissioner of Environmental Protection, Commissioner of Agriculture, Commissioner of Public Health, Insurance Commissioner, Labor Commissioner, Liquor Control Commission, Commissioner of Mental Health and Addiction Services, Commissioner of Public Safety, Commissioner of Social Services, Commissioner of Developmental Services, Commissioner of Motor Vehicles, Commissioner of Transportation, Commissioner of Public Works, Commissioner of Veterans' Affairs, Chief Information Officer, the chairperson of the Public Utilities Control Authority, the executive director of the Board of Education and Services for the Blind, the executive director of the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism, and the executive director of the Office of Military Affairs. As used in sections 4-6 and 4-7, "department head" also means the Commissioner of Education.

Sec. 7. Section 4-38c of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

There shall be within the executive branch of state government the following departments: Office of Policy and Management, Department of Administrative Services, Department of Revenue Services, Department of Banking, Department of Agriculture, Department of Children and Families, Department of Consumer Protection, Department of Correction, Department of Economic and Community Development, Department of Early Education and Child Development, State Board of Education, Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security, Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Public Health, Board of Governors of Higher Education, Insurance Department, Labor Department, Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, Department of Developmental Services, Department of Public Safety, Department of Social Services, Department of Transportation, Department of Motor Vehicles, Department of Veterans' Affairs, Department of Public Works and Department of Public Utility Control.

Sec. 8. Section 10-16o of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

The [state] Department of Early Education and Child Development shall encourage the development of a network of school readiness programs pursuant to sections 10-16p to 10-16r, inclusive, as amended by this act, 10-16u, as amended by this act, and 17b-749a, as amended by this act, in order to:

(1) Provide open access for children to quality programs that promote the health and safety of children and prepare them for formal schooling;

(2) Provide opportunities for parents to choose among affordable and accredited programs;

(3) Encourage coordination and cooperation among programs and prevent the duplication of services;

(4) Recognize the specific service needs and unique resources available to particular municipalities and provide flexibility in the implementation of programs;

(5) Prevent or minimize the potential for developmental delay in children prior to their reaching the age of five;

(6) Enhance federally funded school readiness programs;

(7) Strengthen the family through: (A) Encouragement of parental involvement in a child's development and education; and (B) enhancement of a family's capacity to meet the special needs of the children, including children with disabilities;

(8) Reduce educational costs by decreasing the need for special education services for school age children and to avoid grade repetition;

(9) Assure that children with disabilities are integrated into programs available to children who are not disabled; and

(10) Improve the availability and quality of school readiness programs and their coordination with the services of child care providers.

Sec. 9. Section 10-16p of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) As used in sections 10-16o to 10-16s, inclusive, as amended by this act, 10-16u, as amended by this act, 17b-749a, as amended by this act, and 17b-749c, as amended by this act:

(1) "School readiness program" means a nonsectarian program that (A) meets the standards set by the department pursuant to subsection (b) of this section and the requirements of section 10-16q, as amended by this act, and (B) provides a developmentally appropriate learning experience of not less than four hundred fifty hours and one hundred eighty days for eligible children, except as provided in subsection (d) of section 10-16q, as amended by this act;

(2) "Eligible children" means children three and four years of age and children five years of age who are not eligible to enroll in school pursuant to section 10-15c, or who are eligible to enroll in school and will attend a school readiness program pursuant to section 10-16t;

(3) "Priority school" means a school in which forty per cent or more of the lunches served are served to students who are eligible for free or reduced price lunches pursuant to federal law and regulations, excluding such a school located in a priority school district pursuant to section 10-266p or in a former priority school district receiving a grant pursuant to subsection (c) of this section and, on and after July 1, 2001, excluding such a school in a transitional school district receiving a grant pursuant to section 10-16u, as amended by this act;

(4) "Severe need school" means a school in a priority school district pursuant to section 10-266p or in a former priority school district in which forty per cent or more of the lunches served are served to students who are eligible for free or reduced price lunches;

(5) "Accredited" means accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children, a Head Start on-site program review instrument or a successor instrument pursuant to federal regulations, or otherwise meeting such criteria as may be established by the commissioner [, in consultation with the Commissioner of Social Services, unless the context otherwise requires];

(6) "Year-round" means fifty weeks per year, except as provided in subsection (d) of section 10-16q, as amended by this act;

(7) "Commissioner" means the Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development; and

(8) "Department" means the Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development.

(b) The Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development shall be the lead agency for school readiness. For purposes of this section and section 10-16u, as amended by this act, school readiness program providers eligible for funding from the Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development shall include local and regional boards of education, regional educational service centers, family resource centers and providers of child day care centers, as defined in section 19a-77, Head Start programs, preschool programs and other programs that meet such standards established by the Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development. The department shall establish standards for school readiness programs. The standards may include, but need not be limited to, guidelines for staff-child interactions, curriculum content, including preliteracy development, lesson plans, parent involvement, staff qualifications and training, transition to school and administration. The department shall develop age-appropriate developmental skills and goals for children attending such programs. The commissioner, in consultation with the [Commissioners] Commissioner of Higher Education [and Social Services] and other appropriate entities, shall develop a continuing education training program for the staff of school readiness programs. For purposes of this section, prior to July 1, 2015, "staff qualifications" means there is in each classroom an individual who has at least the following: (1) A credential issued by an organization approved by the Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development and nine credits or more, and on and after July 1, 2005, twelve credits or more, in early childhood education or child development from an institution of higher education accredited by the Board of Governors of Higher Education or regionally accredited; (2) an associate's degree with nine credits or more, and on and after July 1, 2005, twelve credits or more, in early childhood education or child development from such an institution; (3) a four-year degree with nine credits or more, and on and after July 1, 2005, twelve credits or more, in early childhood education or child development from such an institution; or (4) certification pursuant to section 10-145b with an endorsement in early childhood education or special education, and on and after July 1, 2015, "staff qualifications" means there is in each classroom an individual who has at least the following: (A) A bachelor's degree in early childhood education or childhood development, or in a related field approved by the Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development from an institution of higher education accredited by the Board of Governors of Higher Education or regionally accredited; or (B) certification pursuant to section 10-145b with an endorsement in early childhood education or special education.

(c) The Commissioner of [Education, in consultation with the Commissioner of Social Services,] Early Education and Child Development shall establish a grant program to provide spaces in accredited school readiness programs for eligible children who reside in priority school districts pursuant to section 10-266p or in former priority school districts as provided in this subsection. Under the program, the grant shall be provided, in accordance with this section, to the town in which such priority school district or former priority school district is located. Eligibility shall be determined for a five-year period based on an applicant's designation as a priority school district for the initial year of application, except that if a school district that receives a grant pursuant to this subsection is no longer designated as a priority school district at the end of such five-year period, such former priority school district shall continue to be eligible to receive a grant pursuant to this subsection. Grant awards shall be made annually contingent upon available funding and a satisfactory annual evaluation. The chief elected official of such town and the superintendent of schools for such priority school district or former priority school district shall submit a plan for the expenditure of grant funds and responses to the local request for proposal process to the [Departments of Education and Social Services] Department of Early Education and Child Development. The [departments] department shall [jointly] review such plans and shall each approve the portion of such plan within its jurisdiction for funding. The plan shall: (1) Be developed in consultation with the local or regional school readiness council established pursuant to section 10-16r, as amended by this act; (2) be based on a needs and resource assessment; (3) provide for the issuance of requests for proposals for providers of accredited school readiness programs, provided, after the initial requests for proposals, facilities that have been approved to operate a child care program financed through the Connecticut Health and Education Facilities Authority and have received a commitment for debt service from the Department of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development pursuant to section 17b-749i, as amended by this act, are exempt from the requirement for issuance of annual requests for proposals; and (4) identify the need for funding pursuant to section 17b-749a, as amended by this act, in order to extend the hours and days of operation of school readiness programs in order to provide child day care services for children attending such programs.

(d) (1) The Commissioner of [Education, in consultation with the Commissioner of Social Services,] Early Education and Child Development shall establish a competitive grant program to provide spaces in accredited school readiness programs for eligible children who reside (A) in an area served by a priority school or a former priority school as provided for in subdivision (2) of this subsection, (B) in a town ranked one to fifty when all towns are ranked in ascending order according to town wealth, as defined in subdivision (26) of section 10-262f, whose school district is not a priority school district pursuant to section 10-266p, or (C) in a town formerly a town described in subparagraph (B) of this subdivision, as provided for in said subdivision (2). A town in which a priority school is located, a regional school readiness council, pursuant to subsection (c) of section 10-16r, as amended by this act, for a region in which such a school is located or a town described in subparagraph (B) of this subdivision may apply for such a grant in an amount not to exceed one hundred seven thousand dollars per priority school or town. Eligibility shall be determined for a five-year period based on an applicant's designation as having a priority school or being a town described in subparagraph (B) of this subdivision for the initial year of application. Grant awards shall be made annually contingent upon available funding and a satisfactory annual evaluation. The chief elected official of such town and the superintendent of schools of the school district or the regional school readiness council shall submit a plan, as described in subsection (c) of this section, for the expenditure of such grant funds to the Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development. In awarding grants pursuant to this subsection, the commissioner shall give preference to applications submitted by regional school readiness councils and may, within available appropriations, provide a grant in excess of one hundred seven thousand dollars to towns with two or more priority schools in such district. A town or regional school readiness council awarded a grant pursuant to this subsection shall use the funds to purchase spaces for such children from providers of accredited school readiness programs.

(2) (A) Except as provided in subparagraph (C) of this subdivision, commencing with the fiscal year ending June 30, 2005, if a town received a grant pursuant to subdivision (1) of this subsection and is no longer eligible to receive such a grant, the town may receive a phase-out grant for each of the three fiscal years following the fiscal year such town received its final grant pursuant to subdivision (1) of this subsection.

(B) The amount of such phase-out grants shall be determined as follows: (i) For the first fiscal year following the fiscal year such town received its final grant pursuant to subdivision (1) of this subsection, in an amount that does not exceed seventy-five per cent of the grant amount such town received for the town or school's final year of eligibility pursuant to subdivision (1) of this subsection; (ii) for the second fiscal year following the fiscal year such town received its final grant pursuant to subdivision (1) of this subsection, in an amount that does not exceed fifty per cent of the grant amount such town received for the town's or school's final year of eligibility pursuant to subdivision (1) of this subsection; (iii) for the third fiscal year following the fiscal year such town received its final grant pursuant to subdivision (1) of this subsection, in an amount that does not exceed twenty-five per cent of the grant amount such town received for the town's or school's final year of eligibility pursuant to subdivision (1) of this subsection.

(C) For the fiscal year ending June 30, 2011, and each fiscal year thereafter, any town that received a grant pursuant to subparagraph (B) of subdivision (1) of this subsection for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2010, shall continue to receive a grant under this subsection even if the town no longer meets the criteria for such grant pursuant to subparagraph (B) of subdivision (1) of this subsection.

(e) (1) For the fiscal year ending June 30, 2009, and each fiscal year thereafter, priority school districts and former priority school districts shall receive grants based on the sum of the products obtained by (A) multiplying the district's number of contracted slots on March thirtieth of the fiscal year prior to the fiscal year in which the grant is to be paid, by the per child cost pursuant to subdivision (2) of subsection (b) of section 10-16q, as amended by this act, except that such per child cost shall be reduced for slots that are less than year-round, and (B) multiplying the number of additional or decreased slots the districts have requested for the fiscal year in which the grant is to be paid by the per child cost pursuant to subdivision (2) of subsection (b) of said section 10-16q, as amended by this act, except such per child cost shall be reduced for slots that are less than year-round. If said sum exceeds the available appropriation, such number of requested additional slots shall be reduced, as determined by the Commissioner of Education, to stay within the available appropriation.

(2) (A) If funds appropriated for the purposes of subsection (c) of this section are not expended, the Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development may deposit such unexpended funds in the account established under section 10-16aa and use such unexpended funds in accordance with the provisions of said section 10-16aa.

(B) If funds appropriated for the purposes of subsection (c) of this section are not expended pursuant to said subsection (c) or deposited pursuant to subparagraph (A) of this subdivision, the Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development may use such unexpended funds to support local school readiness programs. The commissioner may use such funds for purposes including, but not limited to, (i) assisting local school readiness programs in meeting and maintaining accreditation requirements, (ii) providing training in implementing the preschool assessment and curriculum frameworks, including training to enhance literacy teaching skills, (iii) developing a state-wide preschool curriculum, (iv) developing student assessments for students in grades kindergarten to two, inclusive, (v) developing and implementing best practices for parents in supporting preschool and kindergarten student learning, (vi) developing and implementing strategies for children to transition from preschool to kindergarten, (vii) providing for professional development, including assisting in career ladder advancement, for school readiness staff, and (viii) providing supplemental grants to other towns that are eligible for grants pursuant to subsection (c) of this section.

(3) Notwithstanding subdivision (2) of this subsection, for the fiscal years ending June 30, 2008, to June 30, 2011, inclusive, the Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development may retain up to one hundred ninety-eight thousand two hundred dollars of the amount appropriated for purposes of this section for coordination, program evaluation and administration.

(f) Any school readiness program that receives funds pursuant to this section or section 10-16u, as amended by this act, shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, religion or disability. For purposes of this section, a nonsectarian program means any public or private school readiness program that is not violative of the Establishment Clause of the Constitution of the State of Connecticut or the Establishment Clause of the Constitution of the United States of America.

(g) Subject to the provisions of this subsection, no funds received by a town pursuant to subsection (c) or (d) of this section or section 10-16u, as amended by this act, shall be used to supplant federal, state or local funding received by such town for early childhood education, provided a town may use an amount determined in accordance with this subsection for coordination, program evaluation and administration. Such amount shall be at least twenty-five thousand dollars but not more than seventy-five thousand dollars and shall be determined by the Department of [Education, in consultation with the Department of Social Services,] Early Education and Child Development based on the school readiness grant award allocated to the town pursuant to subsection (c) or (d) of this section or section 10-16u, as amended by this act, and the number of operating sites for coordination, program evaluation and administration. Such amount shall be increased by an amount equal to local funding provided for early childhood education coordination, program evaluation and administration, not to exceed twenty-five thousand dollars. Each town that receives a grant pursuant to said subsection (c) or (d) or section 10-16u, as amended by this act, shall designate a person to be responsible for such coordination, program evaluation and administration and to act as a liaison between the town and the [Departments of Education and Social Services] Department of Early Education and Child Development. Each school readiness program that receives funds pursuant to this section or section 10-16u, as amended by this act, shall provide information to the department or the school readiness council, as requested, that is necessary for purposes of any school readiness program evaluation.

(h) For the first three years a town receives grants pursuant to this section, such grants may be used, with the approval of the commissioner, to prepare a facility or staff for operating a school readiness program and shall be adjusted based on the number of days of operation of a school readiness program if a shorter term of operation is approved by the commissioner.

(i) A town may use grant funds to purchase spaces for eligible children who reside in such town at an accredited school readiness program located in another town. A regional school readiness council may use grant funds to purchase spaces for eligible children who reside in the region covered by the council at an accredited school readiness program located outside such region.

(j) Children enrolled in school readiness programs funded pursuant to this section shall not be counted (1) as resident students for purposes of subdivision (22) of section 10-262f, or (2) in the determination of average daily membership pursuant to subdivision (2) of subsection (a) of section 10-261.

(k) Up to two per cent of the amount of the appropriation for this section may be allocated to the competitive grant program pursuant to subsection (d) of this section. The determination of the amount of such allocation shall be made on or before August first.

Sec. 10. Section 10-16q of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) Each school readiness program shall include: (1) A plan for collaboration with other community programs and services, including public libraries, and for coordination of resources in order to facilitate full-day and year-round child care and education programs for children of working parents and parents in education or training programs; (2) parent involvement, parenting education and outreach; (3) (A) record-keeping policies that require documentation of the name and address of each child's doctor, primary care provider and health insurance company and information on whether the child is immunized and has had health screens pursuant to the federal Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic and Treatment Services Program under 42 USC 1396d, and (B) referrals for health services, including referrals for appropriate immunizations and screenings; (4) a plan for the incorporation of appropriate preliteracy practices and teacher training in such practices; (5) nutrition services; (6) referrals to family literacy programs that incorporate adult basic education and provide for the promotion of literacy through access to public library services; (7) admission policies that promote enrollment of children from different racial, ethnic and economic backgrounds and from other communities; (8) a plan of transition for participating children from the school readiness program to kindergarten and provide for the transfer of records from the program to the kindergarten program; (9) a plan for professional development for staff, including, but not limited to, training (A) in preliteracy skills development, and (B) designed to assure respect for racial and ethnic diversity; (10) a sliding fee scale for families participating in the program pursuant to section 17b-749d, as amended by this act; and (11) an annual evaluation of the effectiveness of the program. On and after July 1, 2000, school readiness programs shall use the assessment measures developed pursuant to section 10-16s, as amended by this act, in conducting their annual evaluations.

(b) (1) For the fiscal year ending June 30, 2006, the per child cost of the Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development school readiness component of the program offered by a school readiness provider shall not exceed six thousand six hundred fifty dollars.

(2) For the fiscal year ending June 30, 2009, and each fiscal year thereafter, the per child cost of the Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development school readiness program offered by a school readiness provider shall not exceed eight thousand three hundred forty-six dollars.

(3) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (e) of section 10-16p, as amended by this act, the Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development shall not provide funding to any school readiness provider that (A) on or before January 1, 2004, first entered into a contract with a town to provide school readiness services pursuant to this section and is not accredited on January 1, 2007, or (B) after January 1, 2004, first entered into a contract with a town to provide school readiness services pursuant to this section and does not become accredited by the date three years after the date on which the provider first entered into such a contract, except that the Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development may grant an extension of time for a school readiness program to become accredited or reaccredited, provided (i) prior to such extension, the Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development conducts an on-site assessment of any such program and maintains a report of such assessment completed in a uniform manner, as prescribed by the commissioner, that includes a list of conditions such program must fulfill to become accredited or reaccredited, (ii) the program is licensed by the Department of Public Health if required to be licensed by chapter 368a, (iii) the program has a corrective action plan that shall be prescribed by and monitored by the Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development, and (iv) the program meets such other conditions as may be prescribed by the commissioner. During the period of such extension, such program shall be eligible for funding pursuant to said section 10-16p, as amended by this act.

(4) A school readiness provider may provide child day care services and the cost of such child day care services shall not be subject to such per child cost limitation.

(c) A local or regional board of education may implement a sliding fee scale for the cost of services provided to children enrolled in a school readiness program.

(d) A town or school readiness council may file a waiver application to the Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development on forms provided by the department for the purpose of seeking approval of a school readiness schedule that varies from the minimum hours and number of days provided for in subdivision (1) of subsection (a) of section 10-16p, as amended by this act, or from the definition of a year-round program pursuant to subdivision (7) of said subsection (a). The [Department of Education] department may [, in consultation with the Department of Social Services,] approve any such waiver if the departments find that the proposed schedule meets the purposes set forth in the provisions of section 10-16o, as amended by this act, concerning the development of school readiness programs and maximizes available dollars to serve more children or address community needs.

Sec. 11. Section 10-16r of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) A town seeking to apply for a grant pursuant to subsection (c) of section 10-16p, as amended by this act, or section 10-16u, as amended by this act, shall convene a local school readiness council or shall establish a regional school readiness council pursuant to subsection (c) of this section. Any other town may convene such a council. The chief elected official of the town or, in the case of a regional school district, the chief elected officials of the towns in the school district and the superintendent of schools for the school district shall jointly appoint and convene such council. Each school readiness council shall be composed of: (1) The chief elected official, or the official's designee; (2) the superintendent of schools, or a management level staff person as the superintendent's designee; (3) parents; (4) representatives from local programs such as Head Start, family resource centers, nonprofit and for-profit child day care centers, group day care homes, prekindergarten and nursery schools, and family day care home providers; (5) a representative from a health care provider in the community; and (6) other representatives from the community who provide services to children. The chief elected official shall designate the chairperson of the school readiness council.

(b) The local school readiness council shall: (1) Make recommendations to the chief elected official and the superintendent of schools on issues relating to school readiness, including any applications for grants pursuant to sections 10-16p, as amended by this act, 10-16u, as amended by this act, 17b-749a, as amended by this act, and 17b-749c, as amended by this act; (2) foster partnerships among providers of school readiness programs; (3) assist in the identification of (A) the need for school readiness programs and the number of children not being served by such a program, and (B) for priority school districts pursuant to section 10-266p, the number of children not being served by such a program and the estimated operating cost of providing universal school readiness to eligible children in such districts who are not being served; (4) submit biannual reports to the Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development on the number and location of school readiness spaces, estimates of future needs, and the factors identified pursuant to subdivision (3) of this subsection; (5) cooperate with the department in any program evaluation and, on and after July 1, 2000, use measures developed pursuant to section 10-16s, as amended by this act, for purposes of evaluating the effectiveness of school readiness programs; (6) identify existing and prospective resources and services available to children and families; (7) facilitate the coordination of the delivery of services to children and families, including (A) referral procedures, and (B) before and after-school child care for children attending kindergarten programs; (8) exchange information with other councils, the community and organizations serving the needs of children and families; (9) make recommendations to school officials concerning transition from school readiness programs to kindergarten; and (10) encourage public participation.

(c) Two or more towns or school districts and appropriate representatives of groups or entities interested in early childhood education in a region may establish a regional school readiness council. If a priority school is located in at least one of such school districts, the regional school readiness council may apply for a grant pursuant to subsection (d) of section 10-16p, as amended by this act. The regional school readiness council may perform the duties outlined in subdivisions (2) to (10), inclusive, of subsection (b) of this section.

Sec. 12. Section 10-16s of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

[(a)] The [Commissioners of Education and Social Services] Commissioner of Early Education and Child Development shall develop [an agreement] a plan to define the duties and responsibilities of [their departments] the department concerning school readiness programs. The [commissioners] commissioner shall consult with other affected state agencies. The agreement shall include, but not be limited to, a multiyear interagency agreement to establish and implement an integrated school readiness plan. [Functions to be described and responsibilities to be undertaken by the two departments shall be delineated in the agreement.] On or before January 1, 2010, and annually thereafter, the [Commissioners of Education and Social Services] commissioner shall submit such agreement, in accordance with the provisions of section 11-4a, to the Early Childhood Education Cabinet, established pursuant to section 10-16z, as amended by this act, and to the joint standing committees of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to education and human services.

[(b) On or before January 1, 2008, the commissioners shall adopt assessment measures of school readiness programs for use by such programs in conducting their annual evaluations pursuant to section 10-16q. The commissioners may adopt the assessment measures used for Head Start programs.]

Sec. 13. Section 10-16u of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

For the fiscal year ending June 30, [2002] 2012, and each fiscal year thereafter, the Commissioner of [Education, in consultation with the Commissioner of Social Services,] Early Education and Child Development shall provide grants, within available appropriations, to eligible school readiness program providers pursuant to subsection (b) of section 10-16p, as amended by this act, to provide spaces in accredited school readiness programs for eligible children who reside in transitional school districts pursuant to section 10-263c, except for transitional school districts eligible for grants pursuant to subsection (c) of section 10-16p, as amended by this act. Under the program, the grant shall be provided to the town in which such transitional school district is located. Eligibility shall be determined for a five-year period based on a school district's designation as a transitional school district in the initial year of application, except that grants pursuant to this section shall not be provided for transitional school districts eligible for grants pursuant to subsection (c) of [said] section 10-16p, as amended by this act. Grant awards shall be made annually contingent upon available funding and a satisfactory annual evaluation. The chief elected official of such town and the superintendent of schools for such transitional school district shall submit a plan for the expenditure of grant funds and responses to the local request for proposal process to the [Departments of Education and Social Services] Department of Early Education and Child Development. The [departments shall jointly] department shall review such plans and [shall each] may approve [the portion of] such plan [within its jurisdiction] for funding. The plan shall meet the requirements specified in subsection (c) of [said] section 10-16p, as amended by this act.

Sec. 14. Section 17b-749a of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) The Commissioner of [Social Services, in consultation with the Commissioner of Education,] Early Education and Child Development shall establish, within available appropriations, a program to (1) purchase directly or provide subsidies to parents to purchase child day care services provided by any elementary or secondary school, nursery school, preschool, day care center, group day care home, family day care home, family resource center, Head Start program, or local or regional board of education, provided, if the commissioner purchases such services directly, [he] the commissioner shall give preference to purchasing from providers of full-day and year-round programs; and (2) award grants to providers of school readiness programs, as defined in section 10-16p, as amended by this act, to increase the hours of operation of their programs in order to provide child care for children attending such programs. The commissioner, for purposes of subdivision (1) of this subsection, shall model the program on the program established pursuant to section 17b-749, as amended by this act.

(b) No funds received by a provider pursuant to this section shall be used to supplant federal funding received for early childhood education on behalf of children in an early childhood education program.

(c) The [Commissioners of Social Services and Education] Commissioner of Early Education and Child Development shall: (1) Coordinate the development of a range of alternative programs to meet the needs of all children; (2) foster partnerships between school districts and private organizations; (3) provide information and assistance to parents in selecting an appropriate school readiness program; and (4) work to ensure, to the extent possible, that school readiness programs allow open enrollment for all children and allow families receiving benefits for such a program to choose a public or accredited private program.

Sec. 15. Subsection (a) of section 17b-749c of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) The Commissioner of [Social Services, in consultation with the Commissioner of Education,] Early Education and Child Development shall establish a program, within available appropriations, to provide, on a competitive basis, supplemental quality enhancement grants to providers of child day care services or providers of school readiness programs pursuant to section 10-16p, as amended by this act, and section 10-16u, as amended by this act. Child day care providers and school readiness programs may apply for a supplemental quality enhancement grant at such time and on such form as the Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development prescribes.

Sec. 16. Section 17b-749f of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) The Commissioner of [Social Services, in consultation with the Commissioner of Education,] Early Education and Child Development shall develop and implement a performance-based evaluation system to evaluate licensed child day care centers, within available appropriations. Such a performance-based evaluation system shall be similar to the Head Start Performance Standards in 45 CFR 1304.

(b) The Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development shall conduct, within available appropriations, a longitudinal study that examines the developmental progress of children and their families both during and following participation in a child day care program.

(c) The Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development shall report to the General Assembly, in accordance with section 11-4a, on or before January 1, [1998] 2012, on the implementation of the performance-based evaluation system and on the longitudinal study, and annually thereafter on the cumulative results of the evaluations.

Sec. 17. Section 17b-749g of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) There is established a child care facilities loan guarantee program for the purpose of guaranteeing loans for the expansion or development of child care and child development centers in the state. The program shall contain any moneys required by law to be deposited in the program, including, but not limited to, any moneys appropriated by the state, premiums and fees for guaranteeing loans, and proceeds from the sale, disposition, lease or rental of collateral relating to loan guarantees. Any balance remaining in the program at the end of any fiscal year shall be carried forward in the program for the fiscal year next succeeding. The program shall be used to guarantee loans pursuant to subsection (b) of this section and to pay reasonable and necessary expenses incurred for administration under this section. The Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development may enter into a contract with a quasi-public agency, banking institution or nonprofit corporation to provide for the administration of the program, provided no loan guarantee shall be made from the program without the authorization of the commissioner as provided in subsection (b) of this section. The total aggregate amount of guarantees from the program, with respect to the insured portions of the loan, may not exceed at any one time an amount equal to three times the balance in the guarantee program.

(b) The state, acting by and in the discretion of the Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development, may guarantee the repayment of loans, including, but not limited to, principal and interest, to a lending institution that has provided funding for the construction, reconstruction, rehabilitation or improvement of child care and child development facilities. The total aggregate of any loan guarantee under this section shall be not less than twenty per cent and shall not exceed fifty per cent of the principal amount of the obligation, as determined by approved underwriting standards approved by the commissioner, and upon such terms and conditions as the commissioner may prescribe. The term of any loan guarantee shall be determined by the useful life of the improvement but in no event shall exceed thirty years. The commissioner shall arrange by contract with each lending institution or the borrower to safeguard the interests of the program in the event of a default by the borrower, including, at the discretion of the commissioner, provision for notice to the program of default by the borrower, for foreclosure or other realization upon any security for the loan, for the time and conditions for payment to the lending institution by the program of the amount of any loss to the lending institution guaranteed by the program and for the disposition of the proceeds realized from any security for the loan guaranteed. When it appears desirable for a temporary period upon default or threatened default by the borrower, the commissioner may authorize payments of installments of principal or interest, or both, from the program to the lending institution, and of taxes and insurance, which payments shall be repaid under such conditions as the program may prescribe and the program may also agree to revise terms of financing when such appears pertinent. Upon request of the lending institution, the commissioner may at any time, under such equitable terms and conditions as it may prescribe, consent to the release of the borrower from his liability under the loan or consent to the release of parts of any secured property from the lien of the lending institution.

(c) Priority for loan guarantees shall be given to financing child care centers and child development centers that (1) have obtained accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children or have an application pending for such accreditation, [and] (2) are included in a local school readiness plan, and (3) shall promote the colocation of programs endorsed by the [Commissioners of Education and Social Services] Commissioner of Early Education and Child Development pursuant to section 4b-31. School readiness programs, licensed child care providers or nonprofit developers of a child care center operating under a legally enforceable agreement with child care providers are eligible for such guaranteed loans.

(d) The Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development may adopt regulations, in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, to establish procedures and qualifications for application for guarantees under this section.

Sec. 18. Section 10-4o of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) The Department of [Education, in conjunction with the Department of Social Services,] Early Education and Child Development shall coordinate a family resource center program to provide comprehensive child care services, remedial educational and literacy services, families-in-training programs and supportive services to parents who are recipients of temporary family assistance and other parents in need of such services. The family resource centers shall be located in or associated with public schools, and any family resource center established on or after July 1, 2000, shall be located in a public elementary school unless the Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development waives such requirement. The commissioner shall determine the manner in which the grant recipients of such program, such as municipalities, boards of education and child care providers shall be selected. The family resource center shall provide: (1) Quality full-day child care and school readiness programs for children age three and older who are not enrolled in school and child care for children enrolled in school up to the age of twelve for before and after regular school hours and on a full-day basis during school holidays and school vacation, in compliance with all state statutes and regulations governing child day care and, in the case of the school readiness programs, in compliance with the standards set for such programs pursuant to section 10-16p, as amended by this act; (2) support services to parents of newborn infants to ascertain their needs and provide them with referrals to other services and organizations and, if necessary, education in parenting skills; (3) support and educational services to parents whose children are participants of the child care services of the program and who are interested in obtaining a high school diploma or its equivalent. Parents and their preschool age children may attend classes in parenting and child learning skills together so as to promote the mutual pursuit of education and enhance parent-child interaction; (4) training, technical assistance and other support by the staff of the center to family day care providers in the community and serve as an information and referral system for other child care needs in the community or coordinate with such systems as may already exist in the community; (5) a families-in-training program to provide, within available appropriations, community support services to expectant parents and parents of children under the age of three. Such services shall include, but not be limited to, providing information and advice to parents on their children's language, cognitive, social and motor development, visiting a participant's home on a regular basis, organizing group meetings at the center for neighborhood parents of young children and providing a reference center for parents who need special assistance or services. The program shall provide for the recruitment of parents to participate in such program; and (6) a sliding scale of payment [, as developed in consultation with the Department of Social Services,] for child care services at the center. The center shall also provide a teen pregnancy prevention program for adolescents emphasizing responsible decision-making and communication skills.

(b) The Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development, in consultation with representatives from family resource centers, within available appropriations, shall develop guidelines for family resource center programs. The guidelines shall include standards for program quality and design and identify short and long-term outcomes for families participating in such programs. The Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development, within available appropriations, shall provide a copy of such guidelines to each family resource center. Each family resource center shall use the guidelines to develop a program improvement plan for the next twelve-month period and shall submit the plan to the department. The plan shall include goals to be used for measuring such improvement. The department shall use the plan to monitor the progress of the center. Family resource centers in existence on July 1, 1997, shall be given a preference for grants for school readiness awarded by the Department of [Education or the Department of Social Services] Early Education and Child Development and for financing pursuant to sections 10a-194c, 17b-749g, as amended by this act, and 17b-749h, as amended by this act.

(c) The Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development, within available appropriations, shall provide for a longitudinal study of family resource centers every three years.

(d) The Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development may provide grants to municipalities, boards of education and child care providers to carry out the purposes of subsection (a) of this section. Each family resource center shall have a program administrator who has at least two years of experience in child care, public administration or early childhood education and a master's degree in child development, early childhood education or a related field.

(e) The Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development may accept and receive on behalf of the department or any family resource center, subject to section 4b-22, any bequest, devise or grant made to the department or any family resource center for the purpose of establishing a new family resource center or expanding an existing center, and may hold and use such property for the purpose specified in such bequest, devise or gift.

Sec. 19. Section 17b-733 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

The Department of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development shall be the lead agency for child day care services in Connecticut. The department shall: (1) Identify, annually, existing child day care services and maintain an inventory of all available services; (2) provide technical assistance to corporations and private agencies in the development and expansion of child day care services for families at all income levels, including families of their employees and clients; (3) study and identify funding sources available for child day care including federal funds and tax benefits; (4) study the cost and availability of liability insurance for child day care providers; (5) provide, in conjunction with the [Departments] Department of [Education and] Higher Education, ongoing training for child day care providers including preparing videotaped workshops and distributing them to cable stations for broadcast on public access stations, and seek private donations to fund such training; (6) encourage child day care services to obtain accreditation; (7) develop a range of financing options for child care services, including the use of a tax-exempt bond program, a loan guarantee program and establishing a direct revolving loan program; (8) promote the colocation of child day care and school readiness programs pursuant to section 4b-31; (9) establish a performance-based evaluation system; (10) develop for recommendation to the Governor and the General Assembly measures to provide incentives for the private sector to develop and support expanded child day care services; (11) provide, within available funds and in conjunction with the temporary family assistance program as defined in section 17b-680, child day care to public assistance recipients; (12) develop and implement, with the assistance of the Child Day Care Council and the Departments of [Public Health, Social Services, Education,] Higher Education, Children and Families, Economic and Community Development and Consumer Protection, a state-wide coordinated child day care and early childhood education training system (A) for child day care centers, group day care homes and family day care homes that provide child day care services, and (B) that makes available to such providers and their staff, within available appropriations, scholarship assistance, career counseling and training, advancement in career ladders, as defined in section 4-124bb, through seamless articulation of levels of training, program accreditation support and other initiatives recommended by the [Departments] Department of [Social Services, Education and] Higher Education; (13) plan and implement a unit cost reimbursement system for state-funded child day care services such that, on and after January 1, 2008, any increase in reimbursement shall be based on a requirement that such centers meet the staff qualifications, as defined in subsection (b) of section 10-16p, as amended by this act; (14) develop, within available funds, initiatives to increase compensation paid to child day care providers for educational opportunities, including, but not limited to, (A) incentives for educational advancement paid to persons employed by child day care centers receiving state or federal funds, and (B) support for the establishment and implementation by the Labor Commissioner of apprenticeship programs for child day care workers pursuant to sections 31-22m to 31-22q, inclusive, which programs shall be jointly administered by labor and management trustees; (15) evaluate the effectiveness of any initiatives developed pursuant to subdivision (14) of this section in improving staff retention rates and the quality of education and care provided to children; and (16) report annually to the Governor and the General Assembly on the status of child day care in Connecticut. Such report shall include (A) an itemization of the allocation of state and federal funds for child care programs; (B) the number of children served under each program so funded; (C) the number and type of such programs, providers and support personnel; (D) state activities to encourage partnership between the public and private sectors; (E) average payments issued by the state for both part-time and full-time child care; (F) range of family income and percentages served within each range by such programs; and (G) age range of children served.

Sec. 20. Section 17b-749 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) The Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development shall establish and operate a child care subsidy program to increase the availability, affordability and quality of child care services for families with a parent or caretaker who is working, attending high school or who receives cash assistance under the temporary family assistance program from the Department of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development and is participating in an approved education, training, or other job preparation activity. Services available under the child care program shall include the provision of child care subsidies for children under the age of thirteen or children under the age of nineteen with special needs. The department shall open and maintain enrollment for the child care subsidy program and shall administer such program within the existing budgetary resources available. The department shall issue a notice on the department's Internet web site and shall provide written notice to recipients of program benefits and to service providers any time the department closes the program to new applications, changes eligibility requirements or changes program benefits, provided the department shall not be required to issue such notice when the department expands program eligibility. Any change in the department's acceptance of new applications, eligibility requirements or program benefits for which the department is required to give notice pursuant to this subsection, shall not be effective until thirty days after the department issues such notice.

(b) The commissioner shall establish income standards for applicants and recipients at a level to include a family with gross income up to fifty per cent of the state-wide median income, except the commissioner (1) may increase the income level to up to seventy-five per cent of the state-wide median income, (2) upon the request of the Commissioner of Children and Families, may waive the income standards for adoptive families so that children adopted on or after October 1, 1999, from the Department of Children and Families are eligible for the child care subsidy program, and (3) on and after March 1, 2003, shall reduce the income eligibility level to up to fifty-five per cent of the state-wide median income for applicants and recipients who qualify based on their loss of eligibility for temporary family assistance. The commissioner may adopt regulations in accordance with chapter 54 to establish income criteria and durational requirements for such waiver of income standards.

(c) The commissioner shall establish eligibility and program standards including, but not limited to: (1) A priority intake and eligibility system with preference given to serving recipients of temporary family assistance who are employed or engaged in employment activities under the department's "Jobs First" program, working families whose temporary family assistance was discontinued not more than five years prior to the date of application for the child care subsidy program, teen parents, low-income working families, adoptive families of children who were adopted from the Department of Children and Families and who are granted a waiver of income standards under subdivision (2) of subsection (b), and working families who are at risk of welfare dependency; (2) health and safety standards for child care providers not required to be licensed; (3) a reimbursement system for child care services which account for differences in the age of the child, number of children in the family, the geographic region and type of care provided by licensed and unlicensed caregivers, the cost and type of services provided by licensed and unlicensed caregivers, successful completion of fifteen hours of annual in-service training or credentialing of child care directors and administrators, and program accreditation; (4) supplemental payment for special needs of the child and extended nontraditional hours; (5) an annual rate review process for providers which assures that reimbursement rates are maintained at levels which permit equal access to a variety of child care settings; (6) a sliding reimbursement scale for participating families; (7) an administrative appeals process; (8) an administrative hearing process to adjudicate cases of alleged fraud and abuse and to impose sanctions and recover overpayments; (9) an extended period of program and payment eligibility when a parent who is receiving a child care subsidy experiences a temporary interruption in employment or other approved activity; and (10) a waiting list for the child care subsidy program that reflects the priority and eligibility system set forth in subdivision (1) of this subsection, which is reviewed periodically, with the inclusion of this information in the annual report required to be issued annually by the Department of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development to the Governor and the General Assembly in accordance with subdivision (10) of section 17b-733, as amended by this act. Such action will include, but not be limited to, family income, age of child, region of state and length of time on such waiting list.

(d) Not later than January 1, 2011, an applicant determined to be eligible for program benefits shall remain eligible for such benefits for a period of not less than eight months from the date that such applicant is determined to be eligible, provided the commissioner has not determined, during such eight-month period, that the applicant's circumstances have changed so as to render the applicant ineligible for program benefits. The commissioner shall not make an eligibility determination for a recipient of program benefits more than one time per eight-month period, except as provided in subsection (e) of this section.

(e) Not later than October 15, 2011, the commissioner shall submit a report, in accordance with the provisions of section 11-4a, to the joint standing committees of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to human services and appropriations and the budgets of state agencies concerning eligibility redeterminations made on an eight-month basis. Such report shall include an analysis of overpayments of program benefits made by the department and administrative costs incurred by the department as a result of eligibility redeterminations made on an eight-month basis. On and after October 15, 2011, the commissioner may make eligibility redeterminations on a six-month basis if, after January 1, 2011, the department's overpayments of program benefits have increased in comparison with the period between January 1, 2010, and December 31, 2010, as a result of having an eight-month eligibility redetermination period.

(f) A provider under the child care subsidy program that qualifies for eligibility and subsequently receives payment for child care services for recipients under this section shall be reimbursed for such services until informed by the Department of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development of the recipient's ineligibility.

(g) All licensed child care providers and those providers exempt from licensing shall provide the Department of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development with the following information in order to maintain eligibility for reimbursement: (1) The name, address, appropriate identification, Social Security number and telephone number of the provider and all adults who work for or reside at the location where care is provided; (2) the name and address of the child's doctor, primary care provider and health insurance company; (3) whether the child is immunized and has had health screens pursuant to the federal Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic and Treatment Services Program under 42 USC 1396d; and (4) the number of children cared for by the provider.

(h) On or after January 1, 1998, the commissioner shall adopt regulations, in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, to implement the provisions of this section.

(i) The commissioner shall submit to the joint standing committees of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to human services and appropriations and the budgets of state agencies a copy of the Child Care and Development Fund Plan that the commissioner submits to the Administration for Children and Families pursuant to federal law. The copy of the plan shall be submitted to the committees not later than thirty days after submission of the plan to the Administration for Children and Families.

Sec. 21. Section 17b-749d of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

Each licensed child day care provider receiving funding directly from the Department of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development shall adopt a sliding fee scale based on family income. The Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development shall develop a minimum sliding fee scale which may be adjusted upward by each such licensed day care program. All income derived from such fees shall be used to support the child day care program.

Sec. 22. Section 19a-80f of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) As used in this section, "facility" means a child day care center, a group day care home and a family day care home, as defined in section 19a-77, and a youth camp, as defined in section 19a-420.

(b) Notwithstanding any provision of the general statutes, the Commissioner of Children and Families, or the commissioner's designee, shall provide to the Department of [Public Health] Early Education and Child Development all records concerning reports and investigations of suspected child abuse or neglect, including records of any administrative hearing held pursuant to section 17a-101k: (1) Occurring at any facility, and (2) by any staff member or licensee of any facility and by any household member of any family day care home, as defined in section 19a-77, irrespective of where the abuse or neglect occurred.

(c) The Department of Children and Families and the Department of [Public Health] Early Education and Child Development shall jointly investigate reports of abuse or neglect occurring at any facility. All information, records and reports concerning such investigation shall be shared between agencies as part of the investigative process.

(d) The Commissioner of [Public Health] Early Education and Child Development shall compile a listing of allegations of violations that have been substantiated by the Department of [Public Health] Early Education and Child Development concerning a facility during the prior three-year period. The Commissioner of [Public Health] Early Education and Child Development shall disclose information contained in the listing to any person who requests it, provided the information does not identify children or family members of those children.

(e) Notwithstanding any provision of the general statutes, when the Commissioner of Children and Families has made a finding substantiating abuse or neglect: (1) That occurred at a facility, or (2) by any staff member or licensee of any facility, or by any household member of any family day care home and such finding is included on the state child abuse or neglect registry, maintained by the Department of Children and Families pursuant to section 17a-101k, such finding may be included in the listing compiled by the Department of [Public Health] Early Education and Child Development pursuant to subsection (d) of this section and may be disclosed to the public by the Department of [Public Health] Early Education and Child Development.

(f) Notwithstanding any provision of the general statutes, when the Commissioner of Children and Families, pursuant to section 17a-101j, has notified the Department of [Public Health] Early Education and Child Development of suspected child abuse or neglect at a facility and if such child abuse or neglect resulted in or involves (1) the death of a child; (2) the risk of serious physical injury or emotional harm of a child; (3) the serious physical harm of a child; (4) the arrest of a person due to abuse or neglect of a child; (5) a petition filed by the Commissioner of Children and Families pursuant to section 17a-112 or 46b-129; or (6) sexual abuse of a child, the Commissioner of [Public Health] Early Education and Child Development may include a finding of child abuse or neglect in the listing under subsection (d) of this section and may disclose such finding to the public. If the Commissioner of Children and Families, or the commissioner's designee, notifies the Commissioner of [Public Health] Early Education and Child Development that such child abuse or neglect was not substantiated after investigation or reversed after appeal, the Commissioner of [Public Health] Early Education and Child Development shall immediately remove such information from the listing and shall not further disclose any such information to the public.

(g) Notwithstanding any provision of the general statutes, all records provided by the Commissioner of Children and Families, or the commissioner's designee, to the Department of [Public Health] Early Education and Child Development regarding child abuse or neglect occurring at any facility, may be utilized in an administrative proceeding or court proceeding relative to facility licensing. In any such proceeding, such records shall be confidential, except as provided by the provisions of section 4-177c, and such records shall not be subject to disclosure pursuant to section 1-210.

Sec. 23. Section 17b-749e of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

The Department of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development shall establish and fund five regional accreditation projects, within available appropriations. The department shall select qualified applicants for each region through a request for proposal process. The department shall give priority to child day care facilities where at least twenty per cent of the children live with families earning less than seventy-five per cent of the state median income level.

Sec. 24. Section 17b-749h of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) There is established a program to be known as the "child care facilities direct revolving loan program". The program shall contain any moneys required by law to be deposited in the program, including, but not limited to, any moneys appropriated by the state, premiums, fees, interest payments and principal payments on direct loans and proceeds from the sale, disposition, lease or rental of collateral relating to direct loans. Any balance remaining in the program at the end of any fiscal year shall be carried forward in the program for the next succeeding fiscal year. The program shall be used to make loans pursuant to subsection (b) of this section, to make loan guarantees and to pay reasonable and necessary expenses incurred in administering loans and loan guarantees under this section. The Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development may enter into a contract with a quasi-public agency, banking institution or nonprofit corporation to provide for the administration of the loan program, provided no loan or loan guarantee shall be made from the fund without the authorization of the commissioner as provided in subsection (b) of this section.

(b) The state, acting by and in the discretion of the Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development, may enter into a contract to provide financial assistance in the form of interest-free loans, deferred loans or guaranteed loans to child care providers or to nonprofit developers of a child care facility operating under a legally enforceable agreement with a child care provider, for costs or expenses incurred and directly connected with the expansion, improvement or development of child care facilities. Such costs and expenses may include: (1) Advances of loan proceeds for direct loans; (2) expenses incurred in project planning and design, including architectural expenses; (3) legal and financial expenses; (4) expenses incurred in obtaining required permits and approvals; (5) options to purchase land; (6) expenses incurred in obtaining required insurance; (7) expenses incurred in meeting state and local child care standards; (8) minor renovations and upgrading child care facilities to meet such standards and loans for the purpose of obtaining licensure under section 19a-77; (9) purchase and installation of equipment, machinery and furniture, including equipment needed to accommodate children with special needs; and (10) other preliminary expenses authorized by the commissioner. Loan proceeds shall not be used for the refinancing of existing loans, working capital, supplies or inventory.

(c) The amount of a direct loan under this section may be up to eighty per cent of the total amount of investment but shall not exceed twenty-five thousand dollars for such facility as determined by the commissioner except that if an applicant for a loan under this section has an existing loan that is guaranteed by the child care facilities loan guarantee program, established under section 17b-749g, as amended by this act, the direct loan provided under this section shall not exceed twenty per cent of the investment. The amount of any guarantee and a direct loan under this section shall not exceed eighty per cent.

(d) Each provider applying for a loan under this section shall submit an application, on a form provided by the commissioner that shall include, but is not limited to, the following information: (1) A detailed description of the proposed or existing child care facility; (2) an itemization of known and estimated costs; (3) the total amount of investment required to expand or develop the child care facility; (4) the funds available to the applicant without financial assistance from the department; (5) the amount of financial assistance sought from the department; (6) information relating to the financial status of the applicant, including, if available, a current balance sheet, a profit and loss statement and credit references; and (7) evidence that the loan applicant shall, as of the loan closing, own, have an option to purchase or have a lease for the term of the loan. Security for the loan may include an assignment of the lease or other subordination of any mortgage and the borrower shall be in default if the loan is not used for the intended purpose.

(e) Payments of principal and interest on such loans shall be paid to the State Treasurer for deposit in the child care facilities direct revolving loan program established in subsection (a) of this section.

(f) The Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development may adopt regulations, in accordance with chapter 54, to carry out the provisions of this section. Such regulations may clarify loan procedures, repayment terms, security requirements, default and remedy provisions, and such other terms and conditions as said commissioner shall deem appropriate.

Sec. 25. Section 8-210 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) The state, acting by and in the discretion of the Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development, may enter into a contract with a municipality or a qualified private, nonprofit corporation for state financial assistance for the planning, construction, renovation, site preparation and purchase of improved or unimproved property as part of a capital development project for neighborhood facilities. Such facilities may include, but are not limited to, child day care facilities, elderly centers, multipurpose human resource centers, emergency shelters for the homeless and shelters for victims of domestic violence. The financial assistance shall be in the form of state grants-in-aid equal to (1) all or any portion of the cost of such capital development project if the grantee is a qualified private nonprofit corporation or (2) up to two-thirds of the cost of such capital development project if the grantee is a municipality, as determined by the commissioner.

(b) The state, acting by and in the discretion of the Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development, may enter into a contract with a municipality, a human resource development agency or a nonprofit corporation for state financial assistance in developing and operating child day care centers for children disadvantaged by reasons of economic, social or environmental conditions, provided no such financial assistance shall be available for the operating costs of any such day care center unless it has been licensed by the Commissioner of Public Health pursuant to section 19a-80. Such financial assistance shall be available for a program of a municipality, of a human resource development agency or of a nonprofit corporation which may provide for personnel, equipment, supplies, activities, program materials and renovation and remodeling of physical facilities of such day care centers. Such contract shall provide for state financial assistance, within available appropriations, in the form of a state grant-in-aid (1) for a portion of the cost of such program as determined by the Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development, if not federally assisted, or (2) equal to one-half of the amount by which the net cost of such program as approved by the commissioner exceeds the federal grant-in-aid thereof. The Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development may authorize child day care centers provided financial assistance pursuant to this subsection to apply a program surplus to the next program year. The commissioner shall consult with directors of child day care centers in establishing fees for the operation of such centers.

(c) The Department of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development, in consultation with representatives from child care centers, within available appropriations, shall develop guidelines for state-contracted child care center programs. The guidelines shall include standards for program quality and design and identify short and long-term outcomes for families participating in such programs. The Department of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development, within available appropriations, shall provide a copy of such guidelines to each state-contracted child care center. Each state-contracted child care center shall use the guidelines to develop a program improvement plan for the next twelve-month period and shall submit the plan to the department. The plan shall include goals to be used for measuring such improvement. The department shall use the plan to monitor the progress of the center.

(d) The state, acting by and in the discretion of the commissioner may enter into a contract with a municipality, a human resource development agency or a nonprofit corporation for state financial assistance for a project of renovation of any child day care facility receiving assistance pursuant to the provisions of this section, to make such facility accessible to the physically disabled, in the form of a state grant-in-aid equal to (1) the total net cost of the project as approved by the commissioner, or (2) the total amount by which the net cost of the project as approved by the commissioner exceeds the federal grant-in-aid thereof.

(e) Any municipality, human resource development agency or nonprofit corporation which enters into a contract pursuant to this section for state financial assistance for a day care facility shall have sole responsibility for the development of the budget of the day care program, including, but not limited to, personnel costs, purchases of equipment, supplies, activities and program materials, within the resources provided by the state under said contract. Upon local determination of a change in the type of day care service required in the area, a municipality, human resource development agency or nonprofit corporation may, within the limits of its annual budget and subject to the provisions of this subsection and sections 19a-77 to 19a-80, inclusive, and 19a-82 to 19a-87a, inclusive, change its day care service. An application to change the type of child day care service provided shall be submitted to the Commissioner of [Social Services. Within] Early Education and Child Development. Not later than forty-five days of his receipt of the application, the commissioner shall advise the municipality, human resource development agency or nonprofit corporation of his approval, denial or approval with modifications of the application. If the commissioner fails to act on the application within forty-five days of its submittal, the application shall be deemed approved.

(f) The Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development may in his discretion with the approval of the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management authorize the expenditure of such funds for the purposes of this section as shall enable the Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development to apply for, qualify for and provide the state's share of a federally assisted day care program.

Sec. 26. Subsection (f) of section 17a-28 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(f) The commissioner or the commissioner's designee shall, upon request, promptly provide copies of records, without the consent of a person, to (1) a law enforcement agency, (2) the Chief State's Attorney, or the Chief State's Attorney's designee, or a state's attorney for the judicial district in which the child resides or in which the alleged abuse or neglect occurred, or the state's attorney's designee, for purposes of investigating or prosecuting an allegation of child abuse or neglect, (3) the attorney appointed to represent a child in any court in litigation affecting the best interests of the child, (4) a guardian ad litem appointed to represent a child in any court in litigation affecting the best interests of the child, (5) the Department of [Public Health] Early Education and Child Development, in connection with: (A) Licensure of any person to care for children for the purposes of determining the suitability of such person for licensure, subject to the provisions of sections 17a-101g and 17a-101k, or (B) an investigation conducted pursuant to section 19a-80f, as amended by this act, (6) any state agency which licenses such person to educate or care for children pursuant to section 10-145b or 17a-101j, subject to the provisions of sections 17a-101g and 17a-101k concerning nondisclosure of findings of responsibility for abuse and neglect, (7) the Governor, when requested in writing, in the course of the Governor's official functions or the Legislative Program Review and Investigations Committee, the joint standing committee of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to the judiciary and the select committee of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to children when requested in the course of said committees' official functions in writing, and upon a majority vote of said committee, provided no names or other identifying information shall be disclosed unless it is essential to the legislative or gubernatorial purpose, (8) a local or regional board of education, provided the records are limited to educational records created or obtained by the state or Connecticut-Unified School District #2, established pursuant to section 17a-37, (9) a party in a custody proceeding under section 17a-112 or 46b-129, in the Superior Court where such records concern a child who is the subject of the proceeding or the parent of such child, (10) the Chief Child Protection Attorney, or his or her designee, for purposes of ensuring competent representation by the attorneys whom the Chief Child Protection Attorney contracts with to provide legal and guardian ad litem services to the subjects of such records and to ensure accurate payments for services rendered by such contract attorneys, (11) the Department of Motor Vehicles, for purposes of checking the state's child abuse and neglect registry pursuant to subsection (e) of section 14-44, and (12) a judge of the Superior Court and all necessary parties in a family violence proceeding when such records concern family violence with respect to the child who is the subject of the proceeding or the parent of such child who is the subject of the proceeding. A disclosure under this section shall be made of any part of a record, whether or not created by the department, provided no confidential record of the Superior Court shall be disclosed other than the petition and any affidavits filed therewith in the superior court for juvenile matters, except upon an order of a judge of the Superior Court for good cause shown. The commissioner shall also disclose the name of any individual who cooperates with an investigation of a report of child abuse or neglect to such law enforcement agency or state's attorney for purposes of investigating or prosecuting an allegation of child abuse or neglect. The commissioner or the commissioner's designee shall, upon request, subject to the provisions of sections 17a-101g and 17a-101k, promptly provide copies of records, without the consent of the person, to [(A)] the Department of [Public Health for] Early Education and Child Development for (A) the purpose of determining the suitability of a person to care for children in a facility licensed under sections 19a-77 to 19a-80, inclusive, 19a-82 to 19a-87, inclusive, and 19a-87b, and (B) [the Department of Social Services for] determining the suitability of a person for any payment from the department for providing child care.

Sec. 27. Section 12-634 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

The Commissioner of Revenue Services shall grant a credit against any tax due under the provisions of chapter 207, 208, 209, 210, 211 or 212 in an amount not to exceed sixty per cent of the total cash amount invested during the taxable year by the business firm in programs operated or created pursuant to proposals approved pursuant to section 12-632 for planning, site preparation, construction, renovation or acquisition of facilities for purposes of establishing a child day care facility to be used primarily by the children of such business firm's employees and equipment installed for such facility, including kitchen appliances, to the extent that such equipment or appliances are necessary in the use of such facility for purposes of child day care, provided: (1) Such facility is operated under the authority of a license issued by the Commissioner of [Public Health] Early Education and Child Development in accordance with sections 19a-77 to 19a-87, inclusive, (2) such facility is operated without profit by such business firm related to any charges imposed for the use of such facility for purposes of child day care, and (3) the amount of tax credit allowed any business firm under the provisions of this section for any income year may not exceed fifty thousand dollars. If two or more business firms share in the cost of establishing such a facility for the children of their employees, each such taxpayer shall be allowed such credit in relation to the respective share, paid or incurred by such taxpayer, of the total expenditures for the facility in such income year. The commissioner shall not grant a credit pursuant to this section to any taxpayer claiming a credit for the same year pursuant to section 12-217x.

Sec. 28. Section 17b-749i of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

Within appropriations available to the State Treasurer for child care facilities, not already allocated toward debt service for specific child care facilities, the Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development may, upon submission of a request by a facility operating a child care program that is financed with tax-exempt or taxable bonds issued through the Connecticut Health and Educational Facilities Authority, allow actual debt service, comprised of principal, interest and premium, if any, on the loan or loans, a debt service reserve fund and a reasonable repair and replacement reserve to be paid, provided such debt service terms and amounts are determined by the commissioner, at the time the loan is entered into, to be reasonable in relation to the useful life and base value of the property.

Sec. 29. Section 17b-749j of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

The Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development shall establish health and safety standards, within available appropriations, for the child care subsidy program. The commissioner shall adopt regulations, in accordance with chapter 54, which shall include, but not be limited to, the following: (1) A requirement for the provider or relative to apply for reimbursement from the Department of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development; (2) a requirement for the provider or relative to provide reasonable confirmation of physical premises safety pursuant to 45 CFR Part 98.41; and (3) minimum health and safety training appropriate to the provider setting and the prevention and control of infectious diseases, including immunization. The commissioner shall, within available appropriations, distribute information on the availability of health and safety training and assistance.

Sec. 30. Section 17b-749k of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) The Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development shall, within available appropriations, require any person, other than a relative, providing child care services to a child in the child's home who receives a child care subsidy from the Department of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development to submit to state and national criminal history records checks. The criminal history records checks required pursuant to this subsection shall be conducted in accordance with section 29-17a. The commissioner shall also request a check of the state child abuse registry established pursuant to section 17a-101k.

(b) The Commissioner of [Social Services] Early Education and Child Development shall have the discretion to refuse payments for child care under any financial assistance program administered by him if the person providing such child care has been convicted in this state or any other state of a felony, as defined in section 53a-25, involving the use, attempted use or threatened use of physical force against another person, of cruelty to persons under section 53-20, injury or risk of injury to or impairing morals of children under section 53-21, abandonment of children under the age of six years under section 53-23 or any felony where the victim of the felony is a child under eighteen years of age, or of a violation of section 53a-70, 53a-70a, 53a-70b, 53a-71, 53a-72a, 53a-72b or 53a-73a, or has a criminal record or was the subject of a substantiated report of child abuse in this state or any other state that the commissioner reasonably believes renders the person unsuitable to provide child care.

Sec. 31. Section 10-16n of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) The Commissioner of [Education, in consultation with the Commissioner of Social Services,] Early Education and Child Development shall establish a competitive grant program to assist nonprofit agencies and local and regional boards of education, which are federal Head Start grantees, in (1) establishing extended-day and full-day, year-round, Head Start programs or expanding existing Head Start programs to extended-day or full-day, year-round programs, (2) enhancing program quality and (3) increasing the number of children served. The commissioner, after consultation with the committee established pursuant to subsection (c) of this section, shall establish criteria for the grants, provided at least twenty-five per cent of the funding for such grants shall be for the purpose of enhancing program quality. Nonprofit agencies or boards of education seeking grants pursuant to this section shall make application to the Commissioner of Education on such forms and at such times as the commissioner shall prescribe. All grants pursuant to this section shall be funded within the limits of available appropriations or otherwise from federal funds and private donations. All full-day, year-round Head Start programs funded pursuant to this section shall be in compliance with federal Head Start performance standards.

(b) The Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development shall annually allocate to each town in which the number of children under the aid to dependent children program, as defined in subdivision (14) of section 10-262f, equals or exceeds nine hundred children, determined for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1996, an amount equal to one hundred fifty thousand dollars plus eight and one-half dollars for each child under the aid to dependent children program, provided such amount may be reduced proportionately so that the total amount awarded pursuant to this subsection does not exceed two million seven hundred thousand dollars. The department shall award grants to the local and regional boards of education for such towns and nonprofit agencies located in such towns which meet the criteria established pursuant to subsection (a) of this section to maintain the programs established or expanded with funds provided pursuant to this subsection in the fiscal years ending June 30, 1996, and June 30, 1997. Any funds remaining in the allocation to such a town after grants are so awarded shall be used to increase allocations to other such towns. Any funds remaining after grants are so awarded to boards of education and nonprofit agencies in all such towns shall be available to local and regional boards of education and nonprofit agencies in other towns in the state for grants for such purposes.

(c) There is established a committee to advise the Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development concerning the coordination, priorities for allocation and distribution, and utilization of funds for Head Start and concerning the competitive grant program established under this section, and to evaluate programs funded pursuant to this section. The committee shall consist of twelve members as follows: One member designated by the Commissioner of Social Services; six members who are directors of Head Start programs, two from community action agency program sites or school readiness coordinators, one of whom shall be appointed by the president pro tempore of the Senate and one by the speaker of the House of Representatives, two from school program sites, one of whom shall be appointed by the majority leader of the Senate and one by the majority leader of the House of Representatives, and two from other nonprofit agency program sites, one of whom shall be appointed by the minority leader of the Senate and one by the minority leader of the House of Representatives; one member designated by the Commission on Children; one member designated by the Early Childhood Education Council; one member designated by the Head Start Directors Association who shall be the parent of a present or former Head Start student; one member designated by the Connecticut Association for Community Action who shall have expertise and experience concerning Head Start; and one member designated by the Office of Human Development Services, Office of Community Programs, Region 1 of the federal Department of Health and Human Services.

(d) The Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development may adopt regulations, in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, for purposes of this section.

Sec. 32. Section 10-16z of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(a) There is established the Early Childhood Education Cabinet. The cabinet shall consist of: (1) The Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development, or the commissioner's designee, (2) one representative from the Department of [Education] Early Education and Child Development who is responsible for programs required under the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act, 20 USC 1400 et seq., as amended from time to time, appointed by the Commissioner of [Education] Early Education and Child Development, (3) the Commissioner of Education, or the commissioner's designee, (4) the Commissioner of Social Services, or the commissioner's designee, [(4)] (5) a representative from an institution of higher education in this state appointed by the Commissioner of Higher Education, [(5)] (6) the Commissioner of Public Health, or the commissioner's designee, [(6)] (7) the Commissioner of Developmental Services, or the commissioner's designee, [(7)] (8) the Commissioner of Mental Health and Addiction Services, or the commissioner's designee, [(8)] (9) the executive director of the Commission on Children, or the executive director's designee, [(9)] (10) the project director of the Connecticut Head Start State Collaboration Office, [(10)] (11) a representative from a Head Start program appointed by the minority leader of the House of Representatives, [(11)] (12) a representative of a local provider of early childhood education appointed by the minority leader of the Senate, [(12)] (13) two appointed by the speaker of the House of Representatives, one of whom is a member of the House of Representatives and one of whom is a parent who has a child attending a school in a priority school district, [(13)] (14) two appointed by the president pro tempore of the Senate, one of whom is a member of the Senate and one of whom is a representative of a public elementary school with a prekindergarten program, [(14)] (15) a representative of the business or philanthropic community in this state appointed by the Governor, and [(15)] (16) the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management, or the secretary's designee. The chairperson of the council shall be appointed from among its members by the Governor.

(b) Within available appropriations and such private funding as may be available, the Early Childhood Education Cabinet shall (1) [coordinate among state agencies, as well as public and private partnerships, the development of services that enhance the health, safety and learning of children from birth to nine years of age, inclusive] advise the Department of Early Education and Child Development on matters relating to early childhood education, (2) not later than December 1, 2009, and annually thereafter, develop an annual plan of action that assigns the appropriate state agency to complete the tasks specified in the federal Head Start Act of 2007, P.L. 110-134, as amended from time to time, and (3) not later than March 1, 2010, and annually thereafter, submit an annual state-wide strategic report, pursuant to said federal Head Start Act, in accordance with the provisions of section 11-4a, addressing the progress such agencies have made toward the completion of such tasks outlined under said federal Head Start Act and this subsection to the Governor and the joint standing committees of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to education and human services.

(c) The Early Childhood Education Cabinet shall be within the Department of [Education for administrative purposes only] Early Education and Child Development.

Sec. 33. Section 17a-248 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

As used in this section and sections 17a-248b to 17a-248g, inclusive, 38a-490a and 38a-516a, unless the context otherwise requires:

(1) "Commissioner" means the Commissioner of [Developmental Services] Early Education and Child Development.

(2) "Council" means the State Interagency Birth-to-Three Coordinating Council established pursuant to section 17a-248b.

(3) "Early intervention services" means early intervention services, as defined in 34 CFR Part 303.12, as from time to time amended.

(4) "Eligible children" means children from birth to thirty-six months of age, who are not eligible for special education and related services pursuant to sections 10-76a to 10-76h, inclusive, and who need early intervention services because such children are:

(A) Experiencing a significant developmental delay as measured by standardized diagnostic instruments and procedures, including informed clinical opinion, in one or more of the following areas: (i) Cognitive development; (ii) physical development, including vision or hearing; (iii) communication development; (iv) social or emotional development; or (v) adaptive skills; or

(B) Diagnosed as having a physical or mental condition that has a high probability of resulting in developmental delay.

(5) "Evaluation" means a multidisciplinary professional, objective assessment conducted by appropriately qualified personnel in order to determine a child's eligibility for early intervention services.

(6) "Individualized family service plan" means a written plan for providing early intervention services to an eligible child and the child's family.

(7) "Lead agency" means the Department of [Developmental Services] Early Education and Child Development, the public agency responsible for the administration of the birth-to-three system in collaboration with the participating agencies.

(8) "Parent" means (A) a biological, adoptive or foster parent of a child; (B) a guardian, except for the Commissioner of Children and Families; (C) an individual acting in the place of a biological or adoptive parent, including, but not limited to, a grandparent, stepparent, or other relative with whom the child lives; (D) an individual who is legally responsible for the child's welfare; or (E) an individual appointed to be a surrogate parent.

(9) "Participating agencies" includes, but is not limited to, the Departments of Education, Social Services, Public Health, Children and Families and Developmental Services, the Insurance Department, the Board of Education and Services for the Blind, the Commission on the Deaf and Hearing Impaired and the Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities.

(10) "Qualified personnel" means persons who meet the standards specified in 34 CFR Part 303.12(e), as from time to time amended, and who are licensed physicians or psychologists or persons holding a state-approved or recognized license, certificate or registration in one or more of the following fields: (A) Special education, including teaching of the blind and the deaf; (B) speech and language pathology and audiology; (C) occupational therapy; (D) physical therapy; (E) social work; (F) nursing; (G) dietary or nutritional counseling; and (H) other fields designated by the commissioner that meet requirements that apply to the area in which the person is providing early intervention services, provided there is no conflict with existing professional licensing, certification and registration requirements.

(11) "Service coordinator" means a person carrying out service coordination, as defined in 34 CFR Part 303.22, as from time to time amended.

(12) "Primary care provider" means physicians and advanced practice registered nurses, licensed by the Department of Public Health, who are responsible for performing or directly supervising the primary care services for children enrolled in the birth-to-three program.

Sec. 34. Subsection (g) of section 10-145d of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(g) For the purposes of issuance of certificates, permits and authorizations by the State Board of Education under the provisions of sections 10-144o to 10-149, inclusive, teaching experience in approved nonpublic schools shall include teaching experience in birth-to-three programs approved by the Department of [Developmental Services] Early Education and Child Development.

Sec. 35. Subsection (c) of section 17a-215c of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2014):

(c) The Division of Autism Spectrum Services may, within available appropriations, research, design and implement the delivery of appropriate and necessary services and programs for all residents of the state with autism spectrum disorders. Such services and programs may include the creation of: (1) The Autism-Specific Early Intervention Program, (AEI), designed to deliver services to any child who becomes at risk or is diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder and who was previously placed in the "birth-to-three" program administered by the Department of [Developmental Services] Early Education and Child Development; (2) age three to twenty-one, inclusive, support services including educational, recreation, life and skill coaching, and vocational and transition services; and (3) over age twenty-one adult services, including those services as defined by the pilot autism spectrum disorder program established pursuant to section 17a-215b, as well as related services deemed necessary by the Commissioner of Developmental Services.

Sec. 36. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2011) (a) A family child care provider shall be a state employee, as defined in subsection (b) of section 5-270 of the general statutes, only for the purposes of collective bargaining pursuant to chapter 68 of the general statutes and not for any other purpose. The provisions of chapter 68 of the general statutes shall apply to family child care providers except as provided in this section. A family child care provider shall not be eligible for benefits available to a state employee.

(b) The Commissioner of Social Services shall have the authority and obligation to bargain and enter into agreements with an organization representing family child care providers that has been designated by the State Board of Labor Relations, pursuant to section 5-275 of the general statutes, as the exclusive bargaining agent of such providers to establish the terms and conditions of participation of family child care providers in the child care subsidy program established pursuant to section 17b-749 of the general statutes, as amended by this act, including, but not limited to, state reimbursement rates, benefits, payment procedures, contract grievance arbitration, and training, professional development and other requirements and opportunities appropriate for such family child care providers. For purposes of section 5-278 of the general statutes, the Department of Social Services shall be considered an executive branch employer and the Commissioner of Social Services, or the commissioner's designee, shall be considered the employer's chief executive officer.

(c) Any collective bargaining agreement reached between the commissioner and the bargaining agent of the family child care providers and any arbitrator's award that is issued concerning the department and the bargaining agent of the family child care providers shall be binding on the parties, except no provision of any such agreement or award that requires additional state funding shall become final until the General Assembly approves the appropriation of such funds. The department and the bargaining agent of the family child care providers may participate in the elective binding arbitration procedures as provided in section 5-276a of the general statutes. The factors to be considered by the arbitrator in arriving at a decision on the issues submitted by the council and the bargaining agent shall include: (1) The state's ability to fund the child care subsidy program established pursuant to section 17b-749 of the general statutes, as amended by this act; (2) the nature of the child care subsidy program at issue; and (3) the needs and welfare of children and families receiving such services, including recruitment, retention and quality needs with respect to family child care providers.

(d) Family child care providers shall not be considered employees of the department or the state for any purpose except for the purpose of collective bargaining, pursuant to the provisions of chapter 68 of the general statutes.

(e) Consistent with the provisions of section 5-279 of the general statutes, no provision of this section shall grant family child care providers a right to strike and such strikes are prohibited.

(f) The only bargaining unit appropriate for the purpose of collective bargaining between the department and a representative of family child care providers, as provided in this section, shall be a state-wide unit of family child care providers who provide child care services under the child care subsidy program established pursuant to section 17b-749 of the general statutes, as amended by this act, in a family day care home, as described in subdivision (3) of subsection (a) of section 19a-77 of the general statutes, or a home described in subdivision (4) of subsection (b) of section 19a-77 of the general statutes.

This act shall take effect as follows and shall amend the following sections:

Section 1

July 1, 2014

New section

Sec. 2

July 1, 2014

New section

Sec. 3

July 1, 2014

New section

Sec. 4

July 1, 2014

New section

Sec. 5

July 1, 2014

New section

Sec. 6

July 1, 2014

4-5

Sec. 7

July 1, 2014

4-38c

Sec. 8

July 1, 2014

10-16o

Sec. 9

July 1, 2014

10-16p

Sec. 10

July 1, 2014

10-16q

Sec. 11

July 1, 2014

10-16r

Sec. 12

July 1, 2014

10-16s

Sec. 13

July 1, 2014

10-16u

Sec. 14

July 1, 2014

17b-749a

Sec. 15

July 1, 2014

17b-749c(a)

Sec. 16

July 1, 2014

17b-749f

Sec. 17

July 1, 2014

17b-749g

Sec. 18

July 1, 2014

10-4o

Sec. 19

July 1, 2014

17b-733

Sec. 20

July 1, 2014

17b-749

Sec. 21

July 1, 2014

17b-749d

Sec. 22

July 1, 2014

19a-80f

Sec. 23

July 1, 2014

17b-749e

Sec. 24

July 1, 2014

17b-749h

Sec. 25

July 1, 2014

8-210

Sec. 26

July 1, 2014

17a-28(f)

Sec. 27

July 1, 2014

12-634

Sec. 28

July 1, 2014

17b-749i

Sec. 29

July 1, 2014

17b-749j

Sec. 30

July 1, 2014

17b-749k

Sec. 31

July 1, 2014

10-16n

Sec. 32

July 1, 2014

10-16z

Sec. 33

July 1, 2014

17a-248

Sec. 34

July 1, 2014

10-145d(g)

Sec. 35

July 1, 2014

17a-215c(c)

Sec. 36

October 1, 2011

New section

Statement of Legislative Commissioners:

Clarified language in section 3(b)(5) and replaced "personal care attendants" with "family child care providers" in section 36(e) for consistency within the section.

ED

Joint Favorable Subst.