Statement of Scope
Department of Children and Families
Rule Number: Chapter DCF 54
Relating to: Child-Placing Agencies
Rule Type: Permanent
This statement of scope was approved by the governor on February 9, 2015.
1. Finding/nature of emergency (for emergency rules only)
2. Detailed description of the objective of the proposed rule
The proposed rule will repeal and recreate the department’s licensing rule for child-placing agencies in ch. DCF 54. The current ch. DCF 54 has not been substantially updated since 1970. The proposed rule will include statutory updates and modern best practices for child-placing agencies on admission and discharge, care of children, physical environment and safety, administration and personnel, and licensing and enforcement. To improve the clarity of all of the department’s child welfare licensing rules, the proposed rule will use language and organization that is the same or similar to what will be in the proposed rules for other department child welfare licensing rules that are also being repealed and recreated.
In general, a child-placing agency is a child welfare agency whose primary responsibility is licensing foster homes and placing children in homes for foster care or adoption. A few agencies that are licensed as child-placing agencies focus on providing social services to children placed in out-of-home care. A child welfare agency is any person required to be licensed under s. 48.60, Stats.
3. Detailed explanation of statutory authority for the rule
Section 48.67 (intro.), Stats., provides that the department shall promulgate rules establishing the minimum requirements for the issuance of licenses to, and establishing standards for the operation of, child welfare agencies. Those rules shall be designed to protect and promote the health, safety, and welfare of the children in the care of all licensees.
Section 227.11 (2) (a), Stats., expressly confers rule-making authority on each agency to promulgate rules interpreting the provisions of any statute enforced or administered by the agency.
4. Estimate of amount of time that state employees will spend developing the rule and of other resources necessary to develop the rule
300 hours
5. List with description of all entities that may be affected by the proposed rule
Child-placing agency licensees and applicants, county departments of social services, county departments of health and human services, tribes, and foster homes.
6. Summary and preliminary comparison with any existing or proposed federal regulation that is intended to address the activities to be regulated by the proposed rule:
There are no federal requirements directly related to licensing child-placing agencies, but standards for reimbursement of state child welfare expenses under Title IV-E of the Social Security Act may be relevant on some issues.
7. Anticipated economic impact of implementing the rule (note if the rule is likely to have a significant economic impact on small businesses):
Minimal effect
Contact Person:  
Mary Morse, Child Welfare Program Specialist
Licensing Section
Bureau of Permanence and Out-of-Home Care
(262) 548-8694
Links to Admin. Code and Statutes in this Register are to current versions, which may not be the version that was referred to in the original published document.