HCS/HBs 1897 & 2414 - This act establishes the "Correctional Center Nursery Program" which requires the Department of Corrections to establish a correctional center nursery in one or more of the correctional centers for women operated by the Department. The program allows eligible inmates and children born to them while in the custody of the Department to reside together in the institution for up to eighteen months. Nothing in this act shall affect, modify, or interfere with the inmate's custodial rights to the child nor establish legal custody of the child with the Department.
An inmate is eligible for the program if she is pregnant at the time she is delivered into custody of the Department, she gives birth on or after the program is implemented, and she meets any other Department promulgated criteria. To participate in the program, the inmate must agree to abide by certain requirements set forth in the act. An inmate's participation in the program can be terminated by the Department for reasons set forth in the act.
Any rights to support shall be assigned by the inmate to the Department while in the program. The Division of Child Support Enforcement shall collect support payments made under the assignment and such payments shall be deposited in the newly-created Correctional Center Nursery Program Fund. Moneys in the Fund shall be used for implementing the program. Ten percent of the assigned child support funds for each inmate shall be placed in a mandatory savings account of the inmate in the program.
Finally, neither the Department of Corrections, nor the program, shall be subject to regulation, licensing, or oversight by the Department of Health and Senior Services unless both departments jointly agree to voluntary regulation, licensing, or oversight.
MARY GRACE PRINGLE