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SB 287: "An Act establishing a higher education savings program for eligible persons who were placed in foster care by the state; and providing for confidentiality of identifying information of a beneficiary under the program."

00                             SENATE BILL NO. 287                                                                         
01 "An Act establishing a higher education savings program for eligible persons who were                                   
02 placed in foster care by the state; and providing for confidentiality of identifying                                    
03 information of a beneficiary under the program."                                                                        
04 BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF ALASKA:                                                                
05    * Section 1. AS 47.05 is amended by adding a new section to read:                                                  
06       Article 4. Alaska Higher Education Savings Program for Foster Children.                                         
07            Sec. 47.05.400. Higher education savings program. (a) The department shall                               
08       administer a program to encourage investment by a person or entity in the higher                                  
09       education of eligible foster children in the state. The program must include                                      
10                 (1)  a central office, dedicated to faith-based and community services,                                 
11       for development and marketing of the program;                                                                     
12                 (2)  a mechanism for the department to enter into a participation                                       
13       agreement with the Board of Regents of the University of Alaska under AS 14.40.802                                
14       to establish and maintain an individual trust account under that section or to enter into                         
01       an advance college tuition savings contract under AS 14.40.803 - 14.40.817, or both,                              
02       for each child who is a beneficiary of the program;                                                               
03                 (3)  a process for identifying donors and eligible beneficiaries;                                       
04                 (4)  a process for distributing nonconfidential information about an                                    
05       eligible beneficiary to a potential donor, including the age, sex, and general location of                        
06       the beneficiary;                                                                                                  
07                 (5)  terms and conditions for participation in the program that are                                     
08       consistent with state and federal law for higher education savings accounts; and                                  
09                 (6)  a procedure for monitoring success of the program, for record                                      
10       keeping, and for maintaining confidentiality of records as required by federal and state                          
11       law.                                                                                                              
12            (b)  A person is eligible for participation in the higher education savings                                  
13       program as a beneficiary if the person was ordered committed to the custody of the                                
14       department under AS 47.10.080(c) or AS 47.12.120(b)(3), was placed in a foster home                               
15       for not less than two years, and is a resident of the state.                                                      
16            (c)  The commissioner or the commissioner's designee may name a new                                          
17       beneficiary to an existing trust account or savings contract established under (a) of this                        
18       section if authorized under federal law and if the named beneficiary dies or if the                               
19       beneficiary fails to enroll in an eligible program before the beneficiary becomes 30                              
20       years of age.                                                                                                     
21            (d)  Identifying information of a beneficiary contained in records related to the                            
22       program is confidential.                                                                                          
23            (e)  In this section,                                                                                        
24                 (1)  "beneficiary" has the meaning given in AS 14.40.802;                                               
25                 (2)  "donor" means the person or entity who contributes to a higher                                     
26       education savings program account or savings contract established for a foster child                              
27       under this section;                                                                                               
28                 (3)  "eligible program" has the meaning given in 20 U.S.C. 1088;                                        
29                 (4)  "participation agreement" has the meaning given in AS 14.40.802.                                   
30    * Sec. 2. AS 47.10.093(b) is amended to read:                                                                      
31            (b)  A state or municipal agency or employee shall disclose appropriate                                      
01       confidential information regarding a case to                                                                      
02                 (1)  a guardian ad litem appointed by the court;                                                        
03                 (2)  a person or an agency requested by the department or the child's                                   
04       legal custodian to provide consultation or services for a child who is subject to the                             
05       jurisdiction of the court under AS 47.10.010 as necessary to enable the provision of                              
06       the consultation or services;                                                                                     
07                 (3)  an out-of-home care provider as necessary to enable the out-of-                                    
08       home care provider to provide appropriate care to the child, to protect the safety of the                         
09       child, and to protect the safety and property of family members and visitors of the out-                          
10       of-home care provider;                                                                                            
11                 (4)  a school official as necessary to enable the school to provide                                     
12       appropriate counseling and support services to a child who is the subject of the case, to                         
13       protect the safety of the child, and to protect the safety of school students and staff;                          
14                 (5)  a governmental agency as necessary to obtain that agency's                                         
15       assistance for the department in its investigation or to obtain physical custody of a                             
16       child;                                                                                                            
17                 (6)  a law enforcement agency of this state or another jurisdiction as                                  
18       necessary for the protection of any child or for actions by that agency to protect the                            
19       public safety;                                                                                                    
20                 (7)  a member of a multidisciplinary child protection team created                                      
21       under AS 47.14.300 as necessary for the performance of the member's duties;                                       
22                 (8)  the state medical examiner under AS 12.65 as necessary for the                                     
23       performance of the duties of the state medical examiner;                                                          
24                 (9)  a person who has made a report of harm as required by                                              
25       AS 47.17.020 to inform the person that the investigation was completed and of action                              
26       taken to protect the child who was the subject of the report;                                                     
27                 (10)  the child support services agency established in AS 25.27.010 as                                  
28       necessary to establish and collect child support for a child who is a child in need of aid                        
29       under this chapter;                                                                                               
30                 (11)  a parent, guardian, or caregiver of a child or an entity responsible                              
31       for ensuring the safety of children as necessary to protect the safety of a child; [AND]                          
01                 (12)  a review panel established by the department for the purpose of                                   
02       reviewing the actions taken by the department in a specific case; and                                         
03                 (13)  the Board of Regents of the University of Alaska under the                                    
04       Alaska higher education savings program for foster children established under                                 
05       AS 47.05.400, but only to the extent that the information is necessary to support                             
06       the program and only if the information released is maintained as a confidential                              
07       record by the Board of Regents.                                                                               
08    * Sec. 3. AS 47.12.310(b) is amended to read:                                                                      
09            (b)  A state or municipal agency or employee shall disclose                                                  
10                 (1)  information regarding a case to a federal, state, or municipal law                                 
11       enforcement agency for a specific investigation being conducted by that agency;                                   
12       [AND]                                                                                                             
13                 (2)  appropriate information regarding a case to                                                        
14                      (A)  a guardian ad litem appointed by the court;                                                   
15                      (B)  a person or an agency requested by the department or the                                      
16            minor's legal custodian to provide consultation or services for a minor who is                               
17            subject to the jurisdiction of the court under this chapter as necessary to enable                           
18            the provision of the consultation or services;                                                               
19                      (C)  school officials as may be necessary to protect the safety of                                 
20            the minor who is the subject of the case and the safety of school students and                               
21            staff or to enable the school to provide appropriate counseling and supportive                               
22            services to meet the needs of a minor about whom information is disclosed;                                   
23                      (D)  a governmental agency as may be necessary to obtain that                                      
24            agency's assistance for the department in its investigation or to obtain physical                            
25            custody of a minor;                                                                                          
26                      (E)  a law enforcement agency of this state or another                                             
27            jurisdiction as may be necessary for the protection, rehabilitation, or                                      
28            supervision of any minor or for actions by that agency to protect the public                                 
29            safety;                                                                                                      
30                      (F)  a victim or to the victim's insurance company as may be                                       
31            necessary to inform the victim or the insurance company about the arrest of the                              
01            minor, including the minor's name and the names of the minor's parents, copies                               
02            of reports, or the disposition or resolution of a case involving a minor;                                    
03                      (G)  the state medical examiner under AS 12.65 as may be                                           
04            necessary to perform the duties of the state medical examiner;                                               
05                      (H)  foster parents or relatives with whom the child is placed by                                  
06            the department as may be necessary to enable the foster parents or relatives to                              
07            provide appropriate care for the child who is the subject of the case, to protect                            
08            the safety of the child who is the subject of the case, and to protect the safety                            
09            and property of family members and visitors of the foster parents or relatives;                              
10                      (I)  the Department of Law or its agent for use and subsequent                                     
11            release if necessary for collection of an order of restitution on behalf of the                              
12            recipient;                                                                                                   
13                      (J)  the Violent Crimes Compensation Board established in                                          
14            AS 18.67.020 for use in awarding compensation under AS 18.67.080; and                                        
15                      (K)  a state, municipal, or federal agency of this state or another                                
16            jurisdiction that has the authority to license adult or children's facilities and                            
17            services; and                                                                                            
18                 (3)  to the Board of Regents of the University of Alaska under the                                  
19       Alaska higher education savings program for foster children established under                                 
20       AS 47.05.400, but only to the extent that the information is necessary to support                             
21       the program and only if the information released is maintained as a confidential                              
22       record by the Board of Regents.