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  Regular-General Government   #   41.    
Board of Supervisors County Administrator  
Meeting Date: 01/15/2019  
Brief Title:    Consider Regionalized Local Child Support Agency
From: Patrick S. Blacklock, County Administrator, County Administrator's Office
Staff Contact: Patrick S. Blacklock, County Administrator, County Administrator's Office, x8150

Subject

Consider recommendation of the County Administrators of Colusa, Sutter and Yolo counties to conduct a collaborative study to examine integrating the local child support agencies into one regional child support agency and direct staff to explore the operational, personnel and logistical impacts associated with regionalizing. (No general fund impact) (Blacklock)

Recommended Action
  1. Consider the recommended framework for a regionalized local child support agency; 
     
  2. The County Administrators of the three counties and their designees form a three county working group to further explore and develop an operational proposal; and
     
  3. Direct staff to return to the Board with a detailed plan on the viability of a regionalized child support agency. The resulting agreement would be presented to the Boards of Supervisors of the three counties as well as to the state department for approval.
Strategic Plan Goal(s)
Operational Excellence
Thriving Residents
Reason for Recommended Action/Background
Oversight for the California Child Support program is provided by the California Department of Child Support Services (DCSS) and is administered locally, generally at the county level. The State Child Support Reform Act of 1999 in California created DCSS and moved local administration of local programs from the District Attorney’s office to newly created local child support agencies (LCSA). The consolidation or sharing of child support program responsibilities as described in the State Plan and the respective Plans of Cooperation has been occurring over approximately the past 15 years. As examples, the following are regional child support agencies:

·       Sierra Nevada LCSA
·       Santa Cruz/San Benito LCSA
·       Merced/Mariposa LCSA
·       Eastern Sierra (Inyo, Mono) LCSA
·       Siskiyou/Modoc LCSA
·       Central Sierra (Tuolumne, Calaveras, Amador, Alpine) LCSA
·       North Coast (Humboldt, Trinity) LCSA

All regional LCSA’s noted above, with the exception of Central Sierra, are regional county agencies. Central Sierra is operated from a Joint Powers Agreement.

The child support program utilizes a single statewide automated system, referred to as CSE. California child support payments are sent to the statewide State Disbursement Unit (SDU) and are processed and disbursed directly by the SDU. Yolo County Child Support provides no cost shared services to Colusa County Child Support in the areas of attorney and fiscal services and Compromise of Arrears Program (COAP) since October 2016.  Furthermore, Yolo County Child Support provided fiscal services to Sutter County Child Support from February 2016 until October 31, 2018.

As State funding for LCSA’s remains flat and personnel costs are steadily increasing, counties are searching for avenues to reduce costs and still provide a high level of service.  Regionalization provides an opportunity for counties to consolidate administrative, financial and case management functions. Furthermore, functions such as training, outreach, data reliability audits, policy and procedure writing and maintenance can be coordinated for consistency and reduced workload for impacted staff. Overall, consolidation of the functions of the child support program can result in increased efficiency, improved service and cost effectiveness for the Child Support Program, its staff and customers.

It is recommended that a three county working group be formed to further explore and develop an operational proposal.  

Background
The local child support programs  have the following caseloads, staffing and allocation:
 
  Caseload
(as of 09/18)
Staffing
(as of 10/18)
2018-19 Final Planning Allocation EDP Budget
Yolo County CSS 7,420 38 $5,743,171 $205,192
Sutter County CSS 4,430 24 $2,969,638 $6,714
Colusa County CSS 669 6 $682,320 $0

 




There is no general fund impact, nor any impact to any of the local child support agency's (LCSA) administrative allocations envisioned with regionalization. Centralizing administrative processes will leverage funding, allowing Yolo, Sutter and Colusa counties to more efficiently operate.

Areas for Consideration:
Organizational Structure
·       Parameters for the physical presence in each county
·       Integrated caseloads
·       Local program policy and procedure analysis - recognizing the need for local nuances given local Rules of Court, Court Commissioners, Health and Human Service systems, etc.
·       Access to multi county IT systems, i.e. CalWIN, C-IV, court systems, required county systems, etc.
·       Program Performance monitoring and analysis.
Personnel
·       Determine if employees should work for lead agency or remain with home agency and positions transfer to lead agency through attrition.
·       Analyze salary and benefit levels for all employees in each local child support agency.
·       Recommend a compensation schedule and benefit level by respective class.
 
Budget
·       Work with CA DCSS to determine the feasibility of a single allocation; single budget and the necessary invoicing procedures between the respective counties.
Collaborations (including Board advisory groups and external partner agencies)
County of Sutter, County of Colusa, Child Support Services

Fiscal Information
No Fiscal Impact
Fiscal Impact of this Expenditure
Total cost of recommended action
Amount budgeted for expenditure
Additional expenditure authority needed $0
On-going commitment (annual cost)
Source of Funds for this Expenditure
General Fund $0
Attachments
No file(s) attached.

Form Review
Inbox Reviewed By Date
Phil Pogledich Phil Pogledich 01/08/2019 11:23 AM
Natalie Dillon Natalie Dillon 01/08/2019 11:27 AM
Elisa Sabatini Elisa Sabatini 01/09/2019 01:28 PM
County Counsel Hope Welton 01/09/2019 03:54 PM
Form Started By: Mindi Nunes Started On: 12/03/2018 04:38 PM
Final Approval Date: 01/09/2019
Level double AA conformance,
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