43-4203. Nebraska Children's Commission; duties; committees created; jurisdiction over committees; establish networks; organize subcommittees; conflict of interest.

(1) The Nebraska Children's Commission shall create a committee to examine the Office of Juvenile Services and the Juvenile Services Division of the Office of Probation Administration. Such committee shall review the role and effectiveness of out-of-home placements utilized in the juvenile justice system, including the youth rehabilitation and treatment centers, and make recommendations to the commission on the juvenile justice continuum of care, including what populations should be served in out-of-home placements and what treatment services should be provided at the centers in order to appropriately serve those populations. Such committee shall also review how mental and behavioral health services are provided to juveniles in residential placements and the need for such services throughout Nebraska and make recommendations to the commission relating to those systems of care in the juvenile justice system. The committee shall collaborate with the Juvenile Justice Institute at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, the Center for Health Policy at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, the behavioral health regions as established in section 71-807, and state and national juvenile justice experts to develop recommendations. The recommendations shall include a plan to implement a continuum of care in the juvenile justice system to meet the needs of Nebraska families, including specific recommendations for the rehabilitation and treatment model. The recommendations shall be delivered to the commission and electronically to the Judiciary Committee of the Legislature annually by September 1.

(2) The commission shall collaborate with juvenile justice specialists of the Office of Probation Administration and county officials with respect to any county-operated practice model participating in the Crossover Youth Program of the Center for Juvenile Justice Reform at Georgetown University.

(3) The commission shall analyze case management workforce issues and make recommendations to the Health and Human Services Committee of the Legislature regarding:

(a) Salary comparisons with other states and the current pay structure based on job descriptions;

(b) Utilization of incentives for persons who work in the area of child welfare;

(c) Evidence-based training requirements for persons who work in the area of child welfare and their supervisors; and

(d) Collaboration with the University of Nebraska to increase and sustain such workforce.

(4) The Foster Care Reimbursement Rate Committee created pursuant to section 43-4216, the Nebraska Strengthening Families Act Committee created pursuant to section 43-4716, and the Bridge to Independence Advisory Committee created pursuant to section 43-4513 shall be under the jurisdiction of the commission.

(5) The commission shall work with the office of the State Court Administrator, as appropriate, and entities which coordinate facilitated conferencing as described in section 43-247.03.

(6) The commission shall work with administrators from each of the service areas designated pursuant to section 81-3116, the teams created pursuant to section 28-728, local foster care review boards, child advocacy centers, the teams created pursuant to the Supreme Court's Through the Eyes of the Child Initiative, community stakeholders, and advocates for child welfare programs and services to establish networks in each of such service areas. Such networks shall permit collaboration to strengthen the continuum of services available to child welfare agencies and to provide resources for children and juveniles outside the child protection system.

(7) The commission may organize subcommittees as it deems necessary. Members of the subcommittees may be members of the commission or may be individuals who have knowledge of the subcommittee's subject matter, professional expertise to assist the subcommittee in completing its assigned responsibilities, or the ability to collaborate within the subcommittee and with the commission to carry out the powers and duties of the commission. A subcommittee shall meet as necessary to complete the work delegated by the commission and shall report its findings to the relevant committee within the commission.

(8) No member of any committee or subcommittee created pursuant to this section shall have any private financial interest, profit, or benefit from any work of such committee or subcommittee.

Source:Laws 2012, LB821, § 3; Laws 2013, LB269, § 6; Laws 2013, LB530, § 6; Laws 2013, LB561, § 56; Laws 2014, LB464, § 33; Laws 2016, LB746, § 25; Laws 2018, LB732, § 1; Laws 2019, LB600, § 5; Laws 2020, LB1061, § 8.