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Kentucky has paid $2.6 million to relative caregivers

Posted at 12:46 PM, Aug 31, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-31 12:46:50-04

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky officials say they have paid $2.6 million to relatives taking care of children in state custody since November to comply with a federal court ruling.

A federal appeals court ruled last year Kentucky had to pay relatives caring for children in state custody just as they do foster parents. Since then, the state has received more than 23,100 inquiries from relatives seeking assistance. But the chief of staff for the Department for Community Based Services, Lesa Dennis, says most do not qualify for payments.

To qualify, children must have been in state custody and relatives cannot have permanent custody.

Kentucky stopped accepting people into its kinship care program in 2013. DCBS Commissioner Eric Clark said lifting the moratorium would likely cost the state $39 million a year.