SACRAMENTO – Assemblyman Paul Cook’s (R- Yucca Valley) AB 1928 passed the Senate yesterday. This bill fixes a growing problem in the district where highly trained foster parents were being disqualified from caring for chronically sick foster children because of the way a regulation dealing with capacity limits was interpreted.
AB 1928 was introduced after Yucaipa resident Craig Hampton contacted Cook about the issue. Hampton and his wife Renee are foster parents trained to care for these “medically fragile” children but were temporarily disqualified because they had two biological children living at home. The problem stemmed from a misinterpreted regulation which tried to limit the number of chronically ill children in a foster home to two, but left out the word “foster” before “child” thus leading to confusion. Because of the lack of clarity in the regulation, many counties prevented foster parents from taking on medically fragile children even though they were qualified and able.
Cook explained, “This is why I introduced AB 1928: it clarifies the intent of child capacity regulations when working with chronically ill foster children so parents are not penalized for having children of their own. It would also prevent other cities and counties from making the same mistake when interpreting the law.”
Hampton said, “In California there are hundreds of homes that quietly provide quality loving care of medically fragile foster children, who would otherwise remain in hospitals or worse. Many of these homes, including ours, were excluded from caring for these children because we have children of our own. Because of this bill, millions of tax dollars will be saved. Children with medical issues will be released from hospitals and into loving family environments.”
Said Cook, “Now it seems as though counties and cities have learned of the misinterpretation through the introduction of my bill. Some have already started to update their procedures and have allowed Craig, and I hope many others, to accept new foster children into their homes. I can’t tell you how happy I am to already see the positive impact this bill has had on the lives of my Californians.”
AB 1928 now moves to the Governor’s desk for his signature.
Assemblyman Paul Cook represents the Inland Empire, including portions of San Bernardino and Riverside Counties.
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