The House Health & Welfare Committee has voted unanimously in favor of administrative rules making permanent a 20 percent increase in reimbursements to foster care providers in Idaho. Sabrina Brown, foster care recruitment and retention specialist, for the state Department of Health & Welfare, said the increase is in line with action already authorized by JFAC last year.
“An analysis that considered a variety of factors indicated that Idaho’s ... rates were at least 35 to 50 percent less than expenses” for caring for foster children, Brown told the committee, as outlined in a federal study. “The level of support for these families is critical to their success.”
She said, “The rule change specifies a 20 percent monthly room and board increase for each foster care age group. For children age 0-5, the state’s monthly reimbursement rises from $329 to $395. For children ages 6-12, it goes from $366 to $439. For those age 13-18, it rises from $487 to $584.
The increase took effect under a temporary rule on July 1; the Legislature reviews it and decides whether to allow the change to become permanent.
Rep. Christy Perry, R-Nampa, said, “This is kind of an alignment. What the Legislature looked at last year in JFAC we were happy with.” She moved approval of the permanent rule, and her motion carried unanimously.