TITLE 40. SOCIAL SERVICES AND ASSISTANCE

Part 1. DEPARTMENT OF AGING AND DISABILITY SERVICES

Chapter 48. COMMUNITY CARE FOR AGED AND DISABLED

Subchapter H. ELIGIBILITY

40 TAC §48.2906

The Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC), on behalf of the Department of Aging and Disability Services (DADS), adopts an amendment to §48.2906 in Chapter 48, Community Care for Aged and Disabled (CCAD), with changes to the proposed text published in the April 13, 2007, issue of the Texas Register (32 TexReg 2130).

The amendment is adopted to implement an age requirement for CCAD primary home care services (in-home unskilled attendant care for individuals who have a medical need for specific tasks, as provided under Title XIX of the Social Security Act). Although DADS previously offered primary home care services to persons of all ages, in response to the settlement agreement in Alberto N., et al, vs. Albert Hawkins and James Hine, HHSC will now offer personal care services (unskilled attendant care) to persons younger than 21 years of age. Upon implementation of HHSC's new personal care services program on September 1, 2007, DADS will make its CCAD primary home care services available only to persons who are 21 years of age or older. To provide continuity of care for individuals who would age out of HHSC's personal care services program within six months after the new program begins, the amendment allows a current consumer of CCAD primary home care services who is eligible for Texas Health Steps and who becomes 21 years of age during the six-month period, to continue receiving CCAD primary home care services.

DADS received no comments regarding adoption of the amendment. However, DADS changed subsection (a)(3) to allow a current CCAD primary home care services consumer to remain eligible for CCAD primary home care services if the consumer is eligible for Texas Health Steps and becomes 21 years of age "on or before February 29, 2008." This change was made to provide a specific cut-off date for the exception to the age requirement and to reflect HHSC's decision to provide a six-month, rather than a three-month, transition period for current consumers of CCAD primary home care services who would age out of HHSC's personal care services program soon after it began.

The amendment is adopted under Texas Government Code, §531.0055, which provides that the HHSC executive commissioner shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of services by the health and human services agencies, including DADS; Texas Human Resources Code, §161.021, which provides that the Aging and Disability Services Council shall study and make recommendations to the HHSC executive commissioner and the DADS commissioner regarding rules governing the delivery of services to persons who are served or regulated by DADS; and Texas Government Code, §531.021, which provides HHSC with the authority to administer federal funds and plan and direct the Medicaid program in each agency that operates a portion of the Medicaid program.

§48.2906.Age.

(a) A person must be 18 years of age or older, or an emancipated minor, to receive Community Care for the Aged and Disabled (CCAD) services, except:

(1) a person of any age may receive CCAD Medicaid-funded day activity and health services;

(2) a person of any age who is not eligible for the Texas Health Steps program may receive CCAD Medicaid-funded community attendant services; and

(3) a person must be 21 years of age or older to receive CCAD primary home care services, except a current CCAD primary home care services consumer who is eligible for Texas Health Steps and who becomes 21 years of age on or before February 29, 2008.

(b) A person under 21 years of age who is eligible for the Texas Health Steps program may be eligible for personal care services provided through the Texas Health and Human Services Commission.

This agency hereby certifies that the adoption has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on August 8, 2007.

TRD-200703471

Kenneth L. Owens

General Counsel

Department of Aging and Disability Services

Effective date: September 1, 2007

Proposal publication date: April 13, 2007

For further information, please call: (512) 438-3734


Part 19. DEPARTMENT OF FAMILY AND PROTECTIVE SERVICES

Chapter 700. CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES

Subchapter C. ELIGIBILITY FOR CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES

The Health and Human Services Commission adopts, on behalf of the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS), amendments to §§700.308 - 700.311, 700.314 - 700.321, 700.323 - 700.325, 700.327 - 700.333, and 700.345; the repeal of §700.322 and §700.334; and new §700.346, in its Child Protective Services Chapter. New §700.346 is adopted with a change to the proposed text published in the May 11, 2007, issue of the Texas Register (32 TexReg 2618). The amendments to §§700.308 - 700.311, 700.314 - 700.321, 700.323 - 700.325, 700.327 - 700.333, and 700.345, and the repeal of §700.322 and §700.334 are adopted without changes to the proposed text and will not be republished.

The justification for the amendments, repeals and new section is to: (1) allow youth who have aged-out of foster care to return to a DFPS-paid foster care placement to complete their educational goals; (2) ensure that the rules for foster care assistance are consistent with applicable legal requirements, including provisions of the state plan for Medical Assistance and the Texas Family Code; and (3) update the agency name and make minor editorial changes.

Section 700.316 is revised to allow youth who have aged-out of foster care to return to a DFPS-paid foster care placement to complete their educational goals. The return to care category is added as a population that is eligible for foster care assistance; the eligibility requirements for return to care are clarified; and the type of foster care assistance for return to care is listed. The revisions also make the terminology consistent with other provisions of Subchapter C, Eligibility for Child Protective Services; clarify the general eligibility for IV-E or state-paid foster care assistance; and consolidate various provisions related to Medical Assistance Only (MAO). Section 700.322 and §700.334 are deleted and relevant information is incorporated into §700.316.

Section 700.320 is revised to clarify that eligibility in medical facility placement is limited to MAO, update the agency name, make the terminology consistent with the rest of Subchapter C, and clarify the type of proceedings referenced by this rule.

Section 700.333 is revised to make the references to MAO uniform.

New §700.346 lists the criteria that a youth must meet to return to a foster care setting.

The following sections are revised to update the agency name, delete unnecessary language and obsolete provisions, update terminology, and make other minor clarifications: §§700.308 - 700.311, 700.314, 700.315, 700.317 - 700.319, 700.321, 700.323 - 700.325, 700.327 - 700.332, and 700.345.

The sections will function by ensuring that youth who have aged out of foster care will be able to return to an environment where they can obtain self-sufficiency through furthering their education. It will also decrease truancy, dropout rates, and associated risk behaviors.

No comments were received regarding adoption of the sections. DFPS is adding the phrase "including the voluntary agreement to return to care" to §700.346(c) for clarification.

40 TAC §§700.308 - 700.311, 700.314 - 700.321, 700.323 - 700.325, 700.327 - 700.333, 700.345, 700.346

The amendments and new section are adopted under Human Resources Code (HRC) §40.0505 and Government Code §531.0055, which provide that the Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of services by the health and human services agencies, including the Department of Family and Protective Services; and HRC §40.021, which provides that the Family and Protective Services Council shall study and make recommendations to the Executive Commissioner and the Commissioner regarding rules governing the delivery of services to persons who are served or regulated by the department.

The amendments and new section implement the Texas Family Code, §264.101 and §264.121.

§700.346.Return to Foster Care.

(a) Subject to the availability of an appropriate licensed placement, a former foster youth may return to foster care if the following eligibility criteria are met:

(1) The youth was in the managing conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) when the youth:

(A) Turned 18 years old; or

(B) Ran away from foster care;

(2) The youth is between the ages of

(A) 18 and 21 years old and is;

(i) Enrolled or to be enrolled within 30 days of placement in a technical or vocational program;

(ii) Enrolled or to be enrolled within 30 days of placement in high-school or in a course of instruction to prepare for the high school equivalency examination; or

(iii) Returning on a break from college or a technical or vocational program for at least one month but no more than four months; or

(B) 18 and 22 years old and enrolled in and attending full time a high school or a program leading toward a high school diploma;

(3) The youth does not have a:

(A) Felony conviction of an offense under Title 5, Title 6, Chapter 29 of Title 7, Chapter 43 or §42.072 of Title 9, §15.031 of Title 4, or §38.17 of Title 8 of the Texas Penal Code (TPC), or any like offense under the law of another state or federal law; or

(B) A finding of physical or sexual abuse of a child in this state or any other state; and

(4) The youth signs a voluntary agreement to return to care.

(b) At the sole discretion of DFPS, a youth may be precluded from returning to foster care if the youth has a:

(1) Misdemeanor or felony conviction under the TPC or the Texas Controlled Substances Act, or any like offense under the law of another state or federal law; or

(2) Finding of abuse or neglect of a child in this state or any other state.

(c) Continuing eligibility for any youth is contingent upon compliance with all requirements, including the voluntary agreement to return to care. No benefits are available past the month the youth turns 21 years old unless the requirements of subsection (a)(2)(B) of this section are met, but in no event may benefits be paid under this provision past the month in which a youth turns 22 years old.

This agency hereby certifies that the adoption has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on August 7, 2007.

TRD-200703424

Gerry Williams

General Counsel

Department of Family and Protective Services

Effective date: September 1, 2007

Proposal publication date: May 11, 2007

For further information, please call: (512) 438-3437


40 TAC §700.322, §700.334

The repeals are adopted under Human Resources Code (HRC) §40.0505 and Government Code §531.0055, which provide that the Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of services by the health and human services agencies, including the Department of Family and Protective Services; and HRC §40.021, which provides that the Family and Protective Services Council shall study and make recommendations to the Executive Commissioner and the Commissioner regarding rules governing the delivery of services to persons who are served or regulated by the department.

The repeals implement the Texas Family Code, §264.101 and §264.121.

This agency hereby certifies that the adoption has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on August 7, 2007.

TRD-200703425

Gerry Williams

General Counsel

Department of Family and Protective Services

Effective date: September 1, 2007

Proposal publication date: May 11, 2007

For further information, please call: (512) 438-3437


Subchapter E. INTAKE, INVESTIGATION, AND ASSESSMENT

The Health and Human Services Commission adopts, on behalf of the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS), the repeal of §700.505 and new §700.505, without changes to the proposed text published in the May 11, 2007, issue of the Texas Register (32 TexReg 2624).

The 79th Legislature, Regular Session, in Senate Bill 6, revised the Texas Family Code, §261.301 and §261.3015. The revisions to §261.301 placed in statute the priorities for investigations, which were previously in rule. It also reduced the response time for Priority II reports from 10 days to 72 hours. The revisions to §261.3015(a) and (a-1) clarified that DFPS should screen out less serious cases of abuse or neglect in an effort to focus staff efforts on the more serious cases that require a full investigation. Newly adopted §700.505 is a rewrite of the previous rule regarding priority reports of abuse and neglect and response times. The primary change is reducing the response time for Priority II reports from 10 days to 72 hours. CPS is responding within the 72- hour time frame by either initiating an investigation or, pursuant to Texas Family Code, §261.3015, by forwarding the report to specialized screening staff.

The adopted new §700.505 will function by reducing the DFPS response time for Priority II reports from 10 days to 72 hours, which will increase child safety.

No comments were received regarding adoption of the sections.

40 TAC §700.505

The repeal is adopted under Human Resources Code (HRC), §40.0505 and Government Code, §531.0055, which provide that the Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of services by the health and human services agencies, including the Department of Family and Protective Services and HRC, §40.021, which provides that the Family and Protective Services Council shall study and make recommendations to the Executive Commissioner and the Commissioner regarding rules governing the delivery of services to persons who are served or regulated by the department.

The repeal implements Texas Family Code, §261.301 and §261.3015, as amended by the 79th Legislature, Regular Session.

This agency hereby certifies that the adoption has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on August 7, 2007.

TRD-200703426

Gerry Williams

General Counsel

Department of Family and Protective Services

Effective date: September 1, 2007

Proposal publication date: May 11, 2007

For further information, please call: (512) 438-3437


40 TAC §700.505

The new section is adopted under Human Resources Code (HRC), §40.0505 and Government Code, §531.0055, which provide that the Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of services by the health and human services agencies, including the Department of Family and Protective Services and HRC, §40.021, which provides that the Family and Protective Services Council shall study and make recommendations to the Executive Commissioner and the Commissioner regarding rules governing the delivery of services to persons who are served or regulated by the department.

The newly adopted section implements Texas Family Code, §261.301 and §261.3015, as amended by the 79th Legislature, Regular Session.

This agency hereby certifies that the adoption has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on August 7, 2007.

TRD-200703427

Gerry Williams

General Counsel

Department of Family and Protective Services

Effective date: September 1, 2007

Proposal publication date: May 11, 2007

For further information, please call: (512) 438-3437


Subchapter H. ADOPTION ASSISTANCE PROGRAM

The Health and Human Services Commission adopts, on behalf of the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS), the repeal of §700.801; new §700.801; and amendments to §§700.802 - 700.805, 700.820 - 700.823, 700.840, 700.841, 700.844 - 700.846, 700.850, 700.860, 700.880, and 700.881, without changes to the proposed text published in the May 11, 2007, issue of the Texas Register (32 TexReg 2625).

The original impetus for the changes is a provision in the Deficit Reduction Act (DRA) of 2005, P.L. 109-171, §7404. That provision alters the requirements governing eligibility determinations for adoption assistance benefits funded by Title IV-E of the Social Security Act. Specifically, the section provides that in cases in which IV-E eligibility is predicated upon eligibility for the Aid to Families with Dependent Children program (AFDC), the AFDC eligibility determination should no longer be made for both the month of removal and in the month the petition to adopt is filed. Rather, the AFDC eligibility determination should be made only for the month of removal. In addition to the changes necessitated by DRA, DFPS is making changes to Subchapter H, Adoption Assistance Program, so it is easier to understand and more consistent.

Section 700.801 is deleted and adopted as new. The definitions are alphabetized for easier access. With the exceptions noted below, the definitions are the same except for minor clarifications. The definition of "adoptive placement" is modified to better explain the time period and the requirements for an adoptive placement. The definition of "special needs child" and a cross reference to the relevant rule are added to eliminate confusion. The definition of "nonrecurring expenses" is added for clarification. The agency name and terminology are updated.

Section 700.802 is revised to eliminate superfluous language that is either contained in the rule or moved to another rule.

Section 700.803 clarifies the process used to determine Title IV-E and state-paid eligibility. The agency name and terminology are also updated.

Section 700.804 clarifies the meaning of the special needs definition for children who belong to certain racial and ethnic groups; describes acceptable types of proof of "reasonable efforts" to place a child without adoption assistance; and clarifies that in exceptional circumstances DFPS may deem an adoptive placement; however, the adoptive parents have the burden of proof. The agency name is also updated.

Section 700.805 clarifies the burden of proof for eligibility in cases involving children placed for adoption by a Licensed Child Placing Agency or other authorized entity.

Section 700.820 makes minor language revisions and adds reference to a rule for clarification purposes.

Section 700.821 clarifies that a determination by the SSA must be prior to the finalization of the adoption. In order to comply with the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, the rule specifies that the child's eligibility for AFDC need only be determined in the month in which the court proceedings that resulted in the order removing the child began and not also in the month the petition to adopt is filed.

Section 700.822 is revised to comply with the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005. The rule specifies that the child's eligibility for AFDC need only be determined in the month in which the court proceedings that resulted in the order removing the child began and not also in the month the petition to adopt is filed. The subsections are renumbered in accordance with the deletion, and the question is made consistent with the answer.

Section 700.844 is revised to add the payment ceilings and delete the out-of-date process for establishing adoption assistance rates.

Section 700.845 makes minor stylistic revisions.

Section 700.846 adds an explanation of circumstances in which DFPS may grant retroactive benefits in an adoption assistance application. Authority for such a retroactive grant exists in current rule; however, the rule change will offer additional specifics regarding the possible grant of retroactive benefits. The rule also clarifies that adoption assistance benefits may begin prior to consummation of the adoption.

Section 700.881 makes minor stylistic revisions.

Sections 700.823, 700.840, 700.841, 700.850, 700.860, and 700.880 update the agency name and make minor revisions.

The sections will function by ensuring that the rules governing eligibility for adoption assistance will be easier to understand and consistent with corresponding federal provisions. Eligibility for this program is of great importance to many families in Texas so it is important that the requirements are explained as clearly as possible, and that the burden of proof for establishing eligibility, particularly in the context of fair hearings, is fully described.

During the comment period, DFPS received a comment from Lutheran Social Services of the South, Inc. concerning §700.804. The commenter stated that the definition of special needs should be modified, so that the required reasonable efforts to place a child without adoption assistance would include situations in which foster parents wish to adopt a child. DFPS is adopting the section without change because a preexisting relationship with foster parents is already taken into account by the reference to "best interests" in the rule.

Division 1. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION AND DEFINITIONS

40 TAC §700.801

The repeal is adopted under Human Resources Code (HRC) §40.0505 and Government Code §531.0055, which provide that the Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of services by the health and human services agencies, including the Department of Family and Protective Services; and HRC §40.021, which provides that the Family and Protective Services Council shall study and make recommendations to the Executive Commissioner and the Commissioner regarding rules governing the delivery of services to persons who are served or regulated by the department.

The repeal implements the Texas Family Code, §162.302 and §162.304.

This agency hereby certifies that the adoption has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on August 7, 2007.

TRD-200703417

Gerry Williams

General Counsel

Department of Family and Protective Services

Effective date: September 1, 2007

Proposal publication date: May 11, 2007

For further information, please call: (512) 438-3437


40 TAC §§700.801 - 700.805

The amendments and new section are adopted under Human Resources Code (HRC) §40.0505 and Government Code §531.0055, which provide that the Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of services by the health and human services agencies, including the Department of Family and Protective Services; and HRC §40.021, which provides that the Family and Protective Services Council shall study and make recommendations to the Executive Commissioner and the Commissioner regarding rules governing the delivery of services to persons who are served or regulated by the department.

The amendments and new section implement the Texas Family Code, §162.302 and §162.304.

This agency hereby certifies that the adoption has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on August 7, 2007.

TRD-200703418

Gerry Williams

General Counsel

Department of Family and Protective Services

Effective date: September 1, 2007

Proposal publication date: May 11, 2007

For further information, please call: (512) 438-3437


Division 2. TITLE IV-E ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

40 TAC §§700.820 - 700.823

The amendments are adopted under Human Resources Code (HRC) §40.0505 and Government Code §531.0055, which provide that the Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of services by the health and human services agencies, including the Department of Family and Protective Services; and HRC §40.021, which provides that the Family and Protective Services Council shall study and make recommendations to the Executive Commissioner and the Commissioner regarding rules governing the delivery of services to persons who are served or regulated by the department.

The amendments implement the Texas Family Code, §162.302 and §162.304.

This agency hereby certifies that the adoption has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on August 7, 2007.

TRD-200703419

Gerry Williams

General Counsel

Department of Family and Protective Services

Effective date: September 1, 2007

Proposal publication date: May 11, 2007

For further information, please call: (512) 438-3437


Division 3. APPLICATION PROCESS, AGREEMENTS, AND BENEFITS

40 TAC §§700.840, 700.841, 700.844 - 700.846, 700.850

The amendments are adopted under Human Resources Code (HRC) §40.0505 and Government Code §531.0055, which provide that the Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of services by the health and human services agencies, including the Department of Family and Protective Services; and HRC §40.021, which provides that the Family and Protective Services Council shall study and make recommendations to the Executive Commissioner and the Commissioner regarding rules governing the delivery of services to persons who are served or regulated by the department.

The amendments implement the Texas Family Code, §162.302 and §162.304.

This agency hereby certifies that the adoption has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on August 7, 2007.

TRD-200703420

Gerry Williams

General Counsel

Department of Family and Protective Services

Effective date: September 1, 2007

Proposal publication date: May 11, 2007

For further information, please call: (512) 438-3437


Division 4. CHANGES IN CIRCUMSTANCES

40 TAC §700.860

The amendment is adopted under Human Resources Code (HRC) §40.0505 and Government Code §531.0055, which provide that the Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of services by the health and human services agencies, including the Department of Family and Protective Services; and HRC §40.021, which provides that the Family and Protective Services Council shall study and make recommendations to the Executive Commissioner and the Commissioner regarding rules governing the delivery of services to persons who are served or regulated by the department.

The amendment implements the Texas Family Code, §162.302 and §162.304.

This agency hereby certifies that the adoption has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on August 7, 2007.

TRD-200703421

Gerry Williams

General Counsel

Department of Family and Protective Services

Effective date: September 1, 2007

Proposal publication date: May 11, 2007

For further information, please call: (512) 438-3437


Division 5. APPEALS AND HEARINGS

40 TAC §700.880, §700.881

The amendments are adopted under Human Resources Code (HRC) §40.0505 and Government Code §531.0055, which provide that the Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of services by the health and human services agencies, including the Department of Family and Protective Services; and HRC §40.021, which provides that the Family and Protective Services Council shall study and make recommendations to the Executive Commissioner and the Commissioner regarding rules governing the delivery of services to persons who are served or regulated by the department.

The amendments implement the Texas Family Code, §162.302 and §162.304.

This agency hereby certifies that the adoption has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on August 7, 2007.

TRD-200703422

Gerry Williams

General Counsel

Department of Family and Protective Services

Effective date: September 1, 2007

Proposal publication date: May 11, 2007

For further information, please call: (512) 438-3437


Subchapter P. PREPARATION FOR ADULT LIVING

Division 2. EDUCATION AND TRAINING VOUCHER PROGRAM

40 TAC §700.1615

The Health and Human Services Commission adopts, on behalf of the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS), an amendment to §700.1615, without changes to the proposed text published in the May 11, 2007, issue of the Texas Register (32 TexReg 2630).

The justification for the amendment is to allow youths who are age 16 and up and are exempt from compulsory high-school attendance to receive financial assistance to pay the costs of attendance for a technical or vocational program.

The amendment will function by ensuring that youth reaching adult age and transitioning from the foster care system will be better prepared with adequate job skills resulting in a smoother transition into adulthood and independent living.

No comments were received regarding adoption of the amendment.

The amendment is adopted under Human Resources Code (HRC) §40.0505 and Government Code §531.0055, which provide that the Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of services by the health and human services agencies, including the Department of Family and Protective Services; and HRC §40.021, which provides that the Family and Protective Services Council shall study and make recommendations to the Executive Commissioner and the Commissioner regarding rules governing the delivery of services to persons who are served or regulated by the department.

The amendment implements 42 U.S.C. §677(a)(6)(i).

This agency hereby certifies that the adoption has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on August 7, 2007.

TRD-200703423

Gerry Williams

General Counsel

Department of Family and Protective Services

Effective date: September 1, 2007

Proposal publication date: May 11, 2007

For further information, please call: (512) 438-3437


Subchapter W. LEVEL-OF-CARE SERVICE SYSTEM

Division 5. INTENSIVE PSYCHIATRIC TRANSITION PROGRAM

40 TAC §§700.2381, 700.2383, 700.2385

The Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) adopts, on behalf of the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS), new §§700.2381, 700.2383, and 700.2385, without changes to the proposed text published in the June 29, 2007, issue of the Texas Register (32 TexReg 2972).

DFPS received funding in House Bill 1 in the 80th session for an exceptional item that was part of the department's Legislative Appropriations Request (LAR) to implement a time limited, post-hospitalization "step-down" rate to support the transition of children in DFPS conservatorship who have experienced or are likely to experience multiple inpatient admissions in a psychiatric hospital to an appropriate placement. HHSC is concurrently adopting an amendment to the Texas Administrative Code, Title 1 §355.7103, Rate-Setting Methodology for 24-Hour Residential Child Care Reimbursements to accommodate this new program.

The new sections will implement the Intensive Psychiatric Transition program. Section 700.2381 provides an overview of the Intensive Psychiatric Transition program, which provides a short-term placement option as an alternative to psychiatric hospitalization or after release from a psychiatric hospital. Section 700.2383 establishes the eligibility criteria for the program, which require that a child (1) be in DFPS conservatorship for the last 90 days; (2) have had three psychiatric hospitalizations in the last 12 months; and (3) be ready for discharge from a psychiatric hospital or at risk of a fourth hospitalization. Section 700.2385 establishes the limit for placement in this program, which is 60 days with a possible extension for an additional 60 days.

The new sections will function by making a psychiatric transition program available for children with extreme behaviors and histories of multiple inpatient psychiatric care episodes to assist them in transitioning into less restrictive placements.

No comments were received regarding adoption of the rules.

The new sections are adopted under Human Resources Code (HRC) §40.0505 and Government Code §531.0055, which provide that the Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of services by the health and human services agencies, including the Department of Family and Protective Services; and HRC §40.021, which provides that the Family and Protective Services Council shall study and make recommendations to the Executive Commissioner and the Commissioner regarding rules governing the delivery of services to persons who are served or regulated by the department.

The new sections implement House Bill 1, 80th Session.

This agency hereby certifies that the adoption has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on August 9, 2007.

TRD-200703475

Gerry Williams

General Counsel

Department of Family and Protective Services

Effective date: September 1, 2007

Proposal publication date: June 29, 2007

For further information, please call: (512) 438-3437