Neighborhood Child Care Center Act Exposed

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The Neighborhood Child Care Center Act was adopted by ALEC's Health and Human Services Task Force and approved by the ALEC Board of Directors in 1985. ALEC has attempted to distance itself from this piece of legislation after the launch of in 2011, but it has done nothing to get it repealed in the states where it previously pushed for it to be made into law.

ALEC Bill Text


Millions of American families have come to depend on two incomes. With the dependence has come an accompanying reliance on child care services. Businesses that mind children for working parents became a growth industry in the 1970s and they were met with another growth industry of the 1970s, government regulation.

Model Legislation

{Title, enacting clause, etc}

Section 1. {Short title}

This act may be cited as the Neighborhood Child Care Center Act.

Section 2. {Agencies subject to regulation; investigation of alleged child abuse}

(A) A child welfare agency, as defined in [appropriate statute], shall not be subject to the provisions of [current licensing statute for child care centers] licensing if:

(1) it is under the direct management of an administrative department of the state; or
(2) if it receives no state or federal funds and complies with standards of fire and safety promulgated by the [office of state fire protection] and standards of health and sanitation promulgated by the [office of health services and environmental quality]. However, any such agency may apply for and be granted licensing if it complies with standards promulgated by the department.

(B) Upon receipt of a complaint alleging child abuse, as defined in [appropriate statute], in any child welfare agency, whether they are licensed or not licensed, the secretary of the [department of health and human resources] shall have the power to investigate the complaint and shall initiate the investigation within one working day after receipt of the complaint. The chairman of the [committee on child protection] shall immediately notify the administrator of the facility f the complaint and seek further information from the administrator with respect to the allegations. If the administrator refuses to cooperate or if the chairman determines that further investigation in necessary, the chairman shall call a meeting of the committee to consider what further action may be taken. The committee shall have the authority to inspect the premises of the facility, interview witnesses, receive testimony under oath, and examine documents in furtherance of the investigation. At the completion of its investigation, the committee shall issue a report which shall, along with the minority report filed by any member, be filed with the district attorney of the [city or county] wherein the facility is located, the secretary of the department, and the chairman of the [house and senate committees on health and welfare].

(C) The special committee on child protection shall consist of a chairman, a vice chairman, and three other members. The members of the committee shall consist of the secretary of the department or his designee, a physician, a social worker, a religious representative, and one member from the general public. At least one member of the committee shall be an attorney. The members shall be appointed by the secretary and shall serve at his pleasure.

(D) The [state department of health and human resources] may assist the committee. The administrator of any facility under investigation shall have the right to present evidence and call witness before the committee during the hearing.

(E) The [office of state fire protection] and the [office of environmental quality] shall report to the secretary of the [department of health and human resources] within thirty (30) days after inspection all day care centers that have been inspected by said offices and the results of that inspection.

(F) All child welfare agencies shall report their existence to the [department of health and human resources] within one hundred and eighty (180) days after the effective date of this act or within sixty (60) days after the agency begins operation. The information to be reported shall be the name of the owner and the name and address of the facility. Any child welfare agency which does not register with the [department of health and human resources] shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be fined not less than twenty-five dollars ($25.00) nor more than two hundred dollars ($200.00). Each day of operation without registration shall constitute a separate offense.

Section 3. {Severability clause}

Section 4. {Repealer clause}

Section 5. {Effective date}

Adopted by the Health and Human Services Task Force and approved by the ALEC Board of Directors in 1985.