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Home > Advocacy > Archive > Budget Information

 
 

FY 2006 Bush Budget and Children

Child Welfare Financing

© Child Welfare League of America. The content of these publications may not be reproduced in any way, including posting on the Internet, without the permission of CWLA. For permission to use material from CWLA's website or publications, contact us using our website assistance form.

Child Welfare Program Option
The President's FY 2006 budget again proposes a child welfare financing option that would restructure the current Title IV-E Foster Care program. Under the proposal, each state would have an option to receive a fixed, predetermined allocation, or block grant, of Title IV-E Foster Care maintenance payments, administrative costs, and training funds rather then the current open-ended entitlement funding provided based on the number of eligible children.

This proposal was included in the President's FY 2004 and 2005 budgets but has yet to be introduced into legislation. The budget documents offer the same overview of the proposal as in past years. No legislative proposal has ever been submitted to Congress by the White House.

According to information contained in previous and current descriptions of the proposal:
  • States would receive annual grants over a five-year period. Funding would equal the projected growth in federal foster care expenditures. These projections would be based on the current restrictions which require states to base eligibility on their 1996 AFDC program standards. States would be allowed to draw down up to 20% of this five-year total in any one year.

  • All states would have a set period of time to opt-in, or choose this option. States not choosing this option at that set time could not elect to make that choice at a later date. States that do choose this option must continue to receive this set funding for a period of five years. Once a state chooses the option, it may not opt-out during the five-year period.

  • States choosing the option could spend the funds on foster care and any services now provided under Title IV-E and Title IV-B Child Welfare Services, and Promoting Safe and Stable Families programs.

  • States could use the funds for any child in the child welfare system, regardless of income. Based on current eligibility, approximately 50% of all children in foster care are supported with federal funds.

  • States choosing the option would have to maintain the same level of state funds now used to draw down federal Title IV-E Foster Care funds.

  • States would be expected to maintain the protections for children that exist in current law.

  • If a state experienced an unusual increase in their foster care population, a state could draw funds from an emergency fund under the TANF block grant. To qualify for this relief, a state would have to meet a national and state target increase in foster care caseload or unemployment rates.

  • HHS would continue to conduct Child and Family Service Reviews. For states choosing this option, Title IV-E eligibility reviews would be eliminated.

  • A set-aside of $30 million would be established for Indian Tribes or consortia that demonstrate the capacity to operate a Title IV-E program. Indian tribes will have similar program requirements as states.

  • The Title IV-E Adoption Assistance program would remain unchanged. The eligibility for this program would continue to be linked to a state's 1996 AFDC standards.
Restriction on Title IV-E Eligibility: Rosales v. Thompson
The President's FY 2006 budget proposal also indicates that a legislative proposal will be developed to pre-empt the implementation of a 2003 U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit ruling in the case of Rosales v. Thompson. The Rosales decision found that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' (HHS) interpretation of the federal Title IV-E Foster Care law denied foster care benefits to some children who should qualify under the law. The Administration included this in last year's budget proposal, but never put forward legislation. Such a proposal could be included as part of a budget reconciliation proposal.

The President's budget now projects this proposal would reduce the cost to the federal government of the foster care program by $84 million in FY 2006 and $399 million over five years. The FY 2005 savings estimate was $77 million in 2005 and $375 million over five years.

Previous to the court ruling, HHS's policy required that states must determine Title IV-E eligibility based on the home from which the child is legally removed, which is typically the child's parent(s). The Rosales decision allows states to base Title IV-E eligibility for a child on the last home a child resided in before formal placement into foster care. Frequently, a child is living with grandparents or other kinship placements just prior to placement in foster care.

The Rosales decision allows states in the ninth judicial circuit, which includes Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington, to make Title IV-E claims based on the new clarification of Title IV-E eligibility. Since the Rosales decision, the affected states have amended their state plans and are basing Title IV-E claims on the Rosales criteria. Several other states outside the ninth judicial circuit have also been considering making changes to their state Title IV-E plans based on the Rosales decision.

Child Welfare

Title IV-E Foster Care
The Administration's budget projects that Title IV-E Foster Care spending will be $4.685 billion. This is an anticipated increase of $58 million in Title IV-E claims from the FY 2005 level. Title IV-E is an entitlement program and funding automatically increases as costs for eligible children go up.

Title IV-E Foster Care funds are used for maintenance payments and administrative costs. For FY 2006, the Administration projects approximately 230,300 children will be eligible for Title IV-E in an average month. This projection assumes that 3,000 fewer children will be eligible than 2005. In addition to maintenance and administrative costs, states use these funds for training and for the operation and development of the Statewide Automated Child Welfare Information Systems (SACWIS), a computer-based data and information collection system.

Title IV-E Adoption Assistance
Federal Title IV-E Adoption Assistance spending is projected to increase to $1.795 billion, an increase of $92 million over 2005 costs. These funds will be used to provide maintenance payments to adoptive families, administrative payments for the costs associated with placing a child in an adoptive home, and training professionals and adoptive parents. The estimated level of funding will support approximately 369,500 children each month. Title IV-E is an entitlement program and funding automatically increases as costs for eligible children go up.

Adoption Opportunities Program
The President's budget would maintain funding for the Adoption Opportunities grants at $27 million, the same total as the current year. Several resources and supports exist under the Adoption Opportunities Program to assist in the adoption of children. The Collaboration to AdoptUsKids recruits homes for children waiting to be adopted through its National Recruitment Campaign. AdoptUsKids also maintains a national Internet photolisting of waiting children and a network of adoptive parent groups. The National Resource Center on Special Needs Adoption provides technical assistance and training on current issues in special-needs adoption, such as compliance with federal laws and regulations, permanency planning, and cultural competence, to state, tribal, and other child welfare organizations. Other programs and efforts that receive support through the Adoption Opportunities Program funding stream include the You Gotta Believe program that seeks permanent placements for older children, the Consortium for Children, and the National Partnership Summits for Adoption and Foster Care Professionals. In addition, Adoption Opportunities Program funding helped to establish the National Adoption Information Clearinghouse (NAIC), a comprehensive information center on adoption.

Adoption Incentives
The budget also maintains current funding of the Adoption Incentives at $32 million, $10 million below the fully authorized level of $43 million. The Adoption Incentives funds are provided to states based on the number of children that are adopted from foster care each year. The payments were reauthorized in 2003 with an added emphasis on promoting the adoption of children age nine and older.

Independent Living
The budget contains $200 million for the Chafee Independent Living Program. This includes $140 million in mandatory funds, the same as the FY 2005 request, for a variety of services to ease the transition from foster care for youth who will likely remain in foster care until they turn 18 and former foster children between the ages of 18 and 21. Approximately 20,000 young people leave foster care each year at their 18th birthday.

Independent Living Education and Training Vouchers
$60 million of the total funding for Independent Living is proposed for the Education and Training Voucher (ETV) program that was authorized in 2001 (P.L. 106-169). The program was funded for the first time in FY 2003 at $42 million and was funded at $47 million in FY 2005. The voucher program helps older youth leaving foster care get the higher education, vocational training, and other education supports they need to move to self-sufficiency.

Up to $5,000 per year is available to a young person for the cost of education or training. This program expands on states' efforts to provide these services. ETV funds are distributed to the states using the same formula as the Chafee Independent Living Program. If a state does not apply for funds for the ETV program, the funds will be reallocated to one or more state on the basis of their relative need for funds. While states are doing a good job generally of distributing these funds, more older foster youth could take advantage of the vouchers if their availability were more widely known.

Promoting Safe and Stable Families
The President's budget proposes funding the Promoting Safe and Stable Families (PSSF, Title IV-B, Subpart 2) program at $410 million. Although a slight increase of $7 million, this represents the first time the Administration has not proposed full funding at $505 million. $305 million of this total is mandatory funding and does not require an annual appropriation. An additional $200 million in discretionary funds requires annual Congressional approval. Current funding for PSSF is $403 million ($305 million in mandatory funds and $98 million in discretionary funds). PSSF has never been fully funded since a portion of its funding became discretionary in 2001.

Children of Incarcerated Parents
The Administration requests $50 million for a program that provides mentoring for children with incarcerated parents. This program was authorized in the Promoting Safe and Stable Families Amendment Act of 2001 (P.L. 107-133) and funded for the first time at $50 million in FY 2005.

This is a competitive grant program providing grants up to $5 million each. The grant recipients are required to provide services, both directly and in collaboration with other local agencies, and to strengthen and support the families of those young people. This includes connecting the children with their imprisoned parent when appropriate.

Child Welfare Services
Under the President's budget, the Child Welfare Services (Title IV-B, Subpart I) is funded at $290 million. This is the same as the current fiscal year. States use these funds to address problems that may result in neglect, abuse, exploitation, or delinquency of children; prevent the unnecessary separation of children from their families and restore children to their families, when possible, place children in adoptive families when appropriate; and assure adequate foster care when children cannot return home or be placed for adoption. There are no federal income eligibility requirements for the receipt of child welfare services.

CAPTA Grants
Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) state grant is maintained at its FY 2005 level of funding at $27 million. CAPTA state grants are used to help improve state Child Protective Services (CPS) systems. CAPTA imposes no income or other eligibility requirements for people receiving assistance, and the program is intended to keep children of any age safe from harm.

CAPTA discretionary grants would be increased by $1 million to $32 million in FY 2006. These grants are non-formula funds used to promote research and program assistance and development. The Community Based Grants for Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect would also maintain the increase realized in FY 2005 with funding remaining at the same level of $43 million in FY 2006. These grants develop community-based and prevention focused programs and activities designed to strengthen and support families to prevent child abuse and neglect. Funds are used at the local level for organizations such as family resource programs, family support programs, voluntary home visiting program, respite care programs, parenting education, mutual support programs, and other community programs or networks of such programs that provide activities that are designed to prevent or respond to child abuse and neglect.

Social Services Block Grant (Title XX)

The President proposes to fund the Social Services Block Grant (SSBG) at its current level of $1.7 billion. The budget would also permanently restore the amount a state can transfer from the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program to SSBG to 10%. States are able to transfer only 4.25% from TANF to SSBG, but each year Congress temporarily allows states to transfer up to 10%. A recently released report by the Urban Institute of child welfare spending found that SSBG represents 12% of total federal spending for child welfare.

Child Care

The Administration proposes a continued freeze in child care funding. The Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) is made up of both discretionary and mandatory child care dollars. The "mandatory" or guaranteed funding is now $2.7 billion. Of this total, approximately $1.6 billion flows to the states by formula if a state puts up state dollars as a match. The remaining funds are provided to states without a required match. The President proposes no increase in discretionary child care funding for FY 2006. The Child Care Development Block Grant (CCDBG), the discretionary portion of CCDF, is currently funded at $2.1 billion. If enacted as proposed, child care funding will have been frozen or cut for four consecutive years. According to Administration projections that are included in the five year budget projection, the White House estimates that 300,000 children will lose child care between 2006 and 2010. Other organizations have projected losses of 375,000. This calculation does not factor in the impact of any changes in the TANF reauthorization.

Congress considered proposals, but was not able to complete action, on legislation to reauthorize child care in 2004. The Administration's reauthorization proposal, as packaged along with the TANF reauthorization, proposes no increase in child care funding for the next five years. The Administration's proposal would continue discretionary funding at the current level of $2.1 billion and also continue the mandatory funding of $2.7 billion for five years.

The demand for child care, however, continues to grow. In 2000, only one in seven of all potentially eligible children were receiving CCDF subsidized child care. With tight state budgets, current child care funding at the state level could be forced to absorb cuts.

The Administration also calls for eliminating funding for the Early Learning Fund. In FY 2005, this program was funded at $35 million. The program funds efforts to coordinate child care and other early education initiatives and has had the strong support of key members of Congress in recent years.

Head Start

The President's budget proposes no increase Head Start funding for FY 2006 except for a $45 million set aside which is intended to help implement a block grant demonstration program in nine states. Funding would remain at $6.9 billion, which is likely to result in more children losing eligibility as inflation continues to erode coverage. This funding is also intended to cover set-asides for Early Head Start and services targeted to enhance the quality of programs.

Head Start is no longer expanding. Between FY 2002 and FY 2003, Head Start's national enrollment actually declined from a total of 912,345 to 909,608. This is the first decline in enrollment from year to year since 1986-87 when enrollment declined by 5,000. Throughout the 1990s Head Start had steadily increased rising from 540,930 children in 1990 to 857,664 by the end of the decade in 2000. These increases took place at the same time significant investments were being made in program and staff quality and education. This is the first time the Administration has proposed a freeze. The National Head start Association projects that 25,000 Head Start slots will be lost.

The Administration's does continue to propose a nine state "pilot" program. This is similar to the House-passed Head Start reauthorization bill (H.R. 2210) that was adopted by the House of Representatives in 2003. Head Start has always been a federal government to local provider program. The Administration would like to take the money that flows into particular states and let those state governments run a Head Start like program along with their own programs. The Senate rejected this approach in 2004 and Head start must still be reauthorized.

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)

The President's FY 2006 budget continues the recommendations made in the President's FY 2004 and 2005 budgets concerning TANF reauthorization. Since Congress did not complete action on TANF reauthorization legislation in 2003 and 2004, it will again be considered this year. The House has passed their version of the legislation (H.R. 4) twice but the full Senate never voted on a bill. The budget indicates the Administration will seek level funding for TANF, including a base amount of $16.5 billion in TANF funds to all 50 states, and approximately $319 million in supplemental grants to 17 states.

The budget indicates that the President's central focus will be on the work requirements in the current TANF law and will emphasize the need to promote marriage. Again, the Administration will propose increasing current work requirements to 40 hour per week, increasing the percentage of a state's cash assistance caseload who must be in work, and spending $1 billion over five years on marriage promotion.

Youth Development

The President's budget includes funding of $991 million for the 21st Century Community Learning Centers program, which is the same level of funding as FY 2005. This program provides opportunities for students and their families to continue learning new skills and discover new abilities after the school day has ended.

In his State of the Union speech, the President announced a new $150 million initiative to help youth at risk of gang influence and involvement The initiative is focused on outreach to at-risk youth to help them make healthy decisions and to help them overcome the danger of gangs. This would be funded through the Compassion Capital Fund in FY 2006, which would be increased to $100 million from $54 million.

Juvenile Justice

Overall funding for juvenile justice in FY 2006 would be cut 45% from FY 2005. As proposed the last two years, the President's FY 2006 budget proposes eliminating funding for the Juvenile Accountability Block Grant (JABG). Congress has rejected the President's proposal, however, and appropriated $54.5 million for JABG in FY 2005. This program was created in 1998 and was reauthorized in 2002. JABG provides funds for implementing graduated sanctions programs, establishing or expanding substance abuse programs, and promoting mental health screening and treatment.

The President's budget includes funding of $32.3 million for the U.S. Department of Justice's local delinquency prevention program (Title V). This is a reduction from $79.3 million in FY 2005. Title V is the only federal funding source specifically targeted toward primary prevention which provides funding for programs aimed at youth who have not had contact with law enforcement but who are at high risk for doing so.

The budget includes funding for the Juvenile Delinquency Prevention Block Grant which has never received funding since its creation in 2002. The budget proposes $43.1 million in FY 2006.

Behavioral Health

The President is proposing $3.3 billion in FY 2006 for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration (SAMHSA), to improve the quality and availability of prevention, early intervention, treatment, and rehabilitation services in order to reduce illness, death, disability, and cost to society resulting from substance abuse and mental illness. This is a net decrease of $56 million, from FY 2005 levels.

Substance Abuse
The budget seeks to double funding for the Access to Recovery State Voucher program. Now in its second year, the FY 2006 funding level of $150 million is intended to reach an additional seven states for a total of 22 participants. The purpose of the initiative is to assist more individuals in obtaining drug and alcohol treatment services by increasing treatment capacity and consumer choice by broadening the base of treatment providers to include proprietary and faith-based providers.

Funding for the Substance Abuse Performance Partnership Block Grant is frozen at $1.776 billion. The Substance Abuse Treatment Programs of Regional and National Significance are increased to a funding level of $447 million, an increase of $25 million. The Substance Abuse Prevention Grants, however, will be reduced by $15 million to a total of $184 million for FY 2006. Total federal funding for substance abuse programs would be $2.407 billion, a $10 million increase from FY 2005.

Abandoned Infants Assistance
The Abandoned Infants Assistance (AIA) Program is funded at $12.126 million, the same as last year. This program provides demonstration grants for services to infants and young children, many of whom are HIV-infected or drug-afflicted. These infants and young children are medically cleared for discharge from acute hospital settings, but remain hospitalized due to a lack of appropriate out-of-home placement alternatives.

Mental Health
The President's budget includes $837 million for mental health activities for FY 2006, a decrease of $64 million. The Mental Health Services Block Grant for states to provide community-based care for adults and children is frozen at $433 million. The Children's Mental Health Services Program was also frozen at the 2005 level of $105 million. Under the President's budget, SAMHSA's Mental Health Programs of Regional and National Significance would be subject to a cut of more than 20% decreasing from $274 million to $210 million.

The Projects for Assistance in Transition from Homelessness (PATH), is frozen at the 2005 level of $55 million. These funds will allow grantees to reach out to 154,000 homeless individuals, getting them off the streets and into mental health and substance abuse treatment services, as well as adequate housing.

Also, included in the President's budget is an expansion of last year's new proposal, State Incentive Grants for Transformation. FY 2006 funding is proposed at $26 million, which represents a $6 million increase. These new competitive grants support the development of comprehensive state mental health plans to reduce system fragmentation, and increase services and supports available to people living with mental illness. In the first year, eight states were awarded grants to establish a planning dialogue across multiple service systems and agencies, such as criminal justice, housing, child welfare, labor, and education. In subsequent years, 85% of funds may be used to support programs at the community level as proposed by the State Plan. The remaining 15% will continue to support state planning and coordination activities. The additional funds will continue to fund the original eight states and will fund up to a total of 11 states in 2006.

Health

Medicaid/SCHIP
Medicaid provides a vital health care safety net in every state. It is a lifeline to health care for children, people with disabilities and chronic illness, and low-income elderly people. To broaden coverage to low-income children, Congress enacted the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). SCHIP targets uninsured children under 19 with family incomes below 200% of poverty who are not eligible for Medicaid or covered by private insurance.

The budget request projects Medicaid mandatory spending to be $192.6 billion for FY 2006, a $4 billion increase over 2005. SCHIP funding is projected to be $5.3 billion in FY 2006, an increase of $91 million.

The Administration proposes a number of changes to Medicaid that are intended to cut federal costs by $60 billion over time. One of these proposals is described only as giving states greater flexibility. Two years ago the President proposed a "sweeping new plan" to redesign the state-federal partnership that now exists in the Medicaid and SCHIP programs. With the future viability of these programs at stake, governors could not reach agreement on whether to support or reject the plan and it was never enacted.

The Administration's budget for Medicaid does contain proposals that would have significant impact for child welfare. Without providing great detail, the Administration suggests that reforms will be offered to "clarify" which services may be claimed under Medicaid Targeted Case Management (TCM). Some states currently access TCM to support a range of services for children in the child welfare system, including providing activities to assess a child's needs; arranging the delivery of needed services; assisting the child and his/her family in accessing the needed services; tracking the child's progress by making referrals, tracking appointments, following up on services rendered, and periodically reassessing the child's needs; consulting with service providers in determining the status or progress of the child's plan; and arranging for crisis assistance. To the extent these activities enhance the child's condition and/or reduces the likelihood that more intensive, more expensive Medicaid covered services will be needed in the future, TCM services have provided a cost benefit particularly for children in the child welfare children system who frequently need services provided by Medicaid.

Restricting the use of Medicaid TCM for these purposes will mean that children may no longer have access to these needed services. Under this proposal Medicaid costs would not be reduced in 2006 but Medicaid costs would be reduced by $2.035 billion over the following four-year period.

The budget proposal would also cap TCM costs and when states are allowed to use it. TCM costs would be restricted to no more than a 50% federal matching rate, the same matching rate as Medicaid administrative services. Current practice allows TCM services to be matched at the higher Medicaid service rate which varies by state from 50% to as high as 80%. The Administration calculates this restriction will reduce Medicaid costs by $129 million in 2006 and a total of $1.049 billion over five years.

For many states, these TCM funds represent a significant source, and in some instances the major source, of child welfare funding. Limiting reimbursement to 50% will mean that states will have less federal support to provide these needed services.

Targeted Case Management services assist children in the foster care and adoption population gain access to needed medical, social, educational, and other services. TCM is not a part of the reimbursement that a foster parent receives. Foster parents receive reimbursement for providing room and board for the children in their care. TCM is not a part of room and board. Much of the work with or on behalf of children in the child welfare arena is that which is addressed under Targeted Case Management activities-assessing service need, accessing those services, following-up, coordination among service providers, etc. To the extent this activity enhances the child's condition and/or reduces the likelihood that more intensive, more expensive Medicaid covered services will be needed in the future, it offers a cost benefit, particularly with the history of child welfare children being frequent users of Medicaid covered services. It must also be remembered that TCM is claimed for a much broader child welfare population than those eligible for Title IV-E Foster Care. Many of the children in out-of-home care are not Title IV-E eligible (almost half the children in out-of-home care nationwide are ineligible for federal assistance through Title IV-E); thus, they are not eligible to receive Title IV-E reimbursed case management services. That could result in the needs of these children not being adequately addressed and that, in turn, will have an impact on whether or not a child has a permanent and safe family setting.

The Administration's budget also offers other changes to Medicaid including extending Transitional Medicaid Assistance (TMA). This provision extends coverage of Medicaid for an additional 12 months to families leaving welfare. This has been a part of the TANF reauthorization debate and this Medicaid coverage is currently extended through the end of March 2005. It is presumed that if TANF were to be extended for five years so would TMA, but the Administration's budget suggests extending this through the end of September 2006.

Currently the SCHIP program is authorized through the end of FY 2007. The Administration proposes instead to reauthorize SCHIP this year. The proposal envisions greater flexibility in how states use their SCHIP funds and also would provide funding of $129 million for state enrollment efforts to increase the number of children in SCHIP.

Family Planning
The Family Planning (Title X) program supports a network of more than 4,500 clinics nationwide serving 4.8 million people. The FY 2006 budget request includes $286 million for the Title X family planning program, the same as FY 2005. Family Planning clinics provide access to a wide array of reproductive health and preventive services.

Abstinence Education
The budget increases funding for abstinence-until-marriage education by $39 million, totaling $206 million. Of this total, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Administration for Children and Families will administer $193 million through two programs-the Community-Based Abstinence Education program and the Abstinence Education Grants to States program. Within the HHS Office of Public Health and Science, the budget also includes $13 million for the abstinence activities conducted through the Adolescent Family Life program.

Maternity Group Homes
In FY 2006, the budget requests $10 million for Maternity Group Homes, more commonly referred to as Second Chance Homes. These homes are supervised, nurturing residences for teen mothers and their children. They provide the support teen mothers need to become self-sufficient and be good parents, with such services provided as child care, education, job training, counseling, and advice on parenting and life skills. This program was authorized in 2004 but Congress has never provided funding.

Maternal and Child Health
Title V of the Social Security Act, the Maternal and Child Health Services Block Grant is frozen at $724 million in FY 2006. Two years ago this block grant was funded at $730 million. The block grant supports federal and state partnerships that provide critical services to 27 million women and children. These services include direct health care services for children with special health care needs, the promotion of health and safety in child care settings, and enabling services such as home visiting and nutrition counseling. It also provides support for newborn screening, trauma care, and injury prevention. The budget request also proposes $98 million for the Healthy Start program, a reduction from $102 million approved for 2005. The Healthy Start program supports community-driven programs to reduce low-birthweight and inadequate prenatal care, both conditions that contribute to infant mortality.

HIV/AIDS

The FY 2006 budget request includes $2.058 billion for the Ryan White HIV/AIDS program. In FY 2005, this program was funded at $2.048 billion. The Ryan White program provides HIV medical care and related supportive services to individuals with HIV/AIDS, including early intervention services to underserved communities.

Children with Disabilities Activities authorized under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Early Intervention Services Program (Part C) would be funded at $441 million in FY 2006. This is a cut of $18 million from the FY 2005 funding level.. Through IDEA, the U.S. Department of Education works with states to ensure that children with disabilities receive an appropriate public education that includes preparing them for employment and independent living, and that all schools are held accountable for the educational results of children needing special education. This program provides early intervention services for infants and their families.

Health Research The President's FY 2006 budget request includes $31.3 billion for the National Institutes of Health (NIH). NIH is the world's largest and most distinguished organization dedicated to maintaining and improving health through medical research. Of NIH's 27 institutes and centers, those of particular importance to children and their families in the child welfare system include the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development ($1.278 billion, $7 million increase); the National Institute of Mental Health ($1.418 billion, an $8 million increase); the National Institute on Drug Abuse ($1.010 billion, a $4 million increase); and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism ($440 million, a $2 million increase).

Housing

The President's budget request for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development cuts funding from $32.4 billion in FY 2005 to $28.5 billion in FY 2006. The Section 8 housing assistance voucher program is funded at $15.845 billion, a $1.079 increase over FY 2005. This funding level is only sufficient to serve 95% of those currently receiving assistance.

The proposed budget notes the Administration's intent to continue funding the Family Unification Program, which provides Section 8 vouchers to families with children who have been placed, or are at risk of placement, in foster care primarily because the family lacks adequate housing, and to youth transitioning out of foster care.


Child Welfare League of America
February 2005



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