48.737 History History: 1993 a. 450, 491; 1997 a. 27; 2009 a. 185.
48.74 48.74 Authority of department to investigate alleged violations. Whenever the department is advised or has reason to believe that any person is violating any of the provisions of ss. 48.60, 48.62, 48.625 or 48.65, it shall make an investigation to determine the facts. For the purposes of this investigation, it shall have authority to inspect the premises where the violation is alleged to occur. If it finds that the person is violating any of the specified sections, it may either issue a license if the person is qualified or may institute a prosecution under s. 48.76.
48.74 History History: 1979 c. 300.
48.743 48.743 Community living arrangements for children.
48.743(1)(1)In this section, “community living arrangement for children" means a residential care center for children and youth or a group home.
48.743(2) (2)Community living arrangements for children shall be subject to the same building and housing ordinances, codes, and regulations of the municipality or county as similar residences located in the area in which the facility is located.
48.743(3) (3)The department shall designate a subunit to keep records and supply information on community living arrangements for children under ss. 59.69 (15) (f), 60.63 (7), and 62.23 (7) (i) 6. The subunit shall be responsible for receiving all complaints regarding community living arrangements for children and for coordinating all necessary investigatory and disciplinary actions under the laws of this state and under the rules of the department relating to the licensing of community living arrangements for children.
48.743(4) (4)A community living arrangement for children with a capacity for 8 or fewer persons shall be a permissible use for purposes of any deed covenant which limits use of property to single-family or 2-family residences. A community living arrangement for children with a capacity for 15 or fewer persons shall be a permissible use for purposes of any deed covenant which limits use of property to more than 2-family residences. Covenants in deeds which expressly prohibit use of property for community living arrangements for children are void as against public policy.
48.743(5) (5)If a community living arrangement for children is required to obtain special zoning permission, as defined in s. 59.69 (15) (g), the department shall, at the request of the unit of government responsible for granting the special zoning permission, inspect the proposed facility and review the program proposed for the facility. After such inspection and review, the department shall transmit to the unit of government responsible for granting the special zoning permission a statement that the proposed facility and its proposed program have been examined and are either approved or disapproved by the department.
48.743 History History: 2007 a. 20.
48.743 Annotation A holding that a community living arrangement with a capacity of 10 persons was not barred by a deed covenant limiting use to a single-family residence. Crowley v. Knapp, 94 Wis. 2d 421, 288 N.W.2d 815 (1980). See also Overlook Farms v. Alternative Living, 143 Wis. 2d 485, 422 N.W.2d 131 (Ct. App. 1988).
48.745 48.745 Formal complaints regarding child welfare agencies and group homes.
48.745(1)(1)If a complaint is received by a child welfare agency operating a residential care center for children and youth or by a group home, the licensee shall attempt to resolve the complaint informally. Failing such resolution, the licensee shall inform the complaining party of the procedure for filing a formal complaint under this section.
48.745(2) (2)Any individual may file a formal complaint under this section regarding the general operation of a residential care center for children and youth or group home and shall not be subject to reprisals for doing so. All formal complaints regarding residential care centers for children and youth and group homes shall be filed with the county department on forms supplied by the county department unless the county department designates the department to receive formal complaints. The county department shall investigate or cause to be investigated each formal complaint. Records of the results of each investigation and the disposition of each formal complaint shall be kept by the county department and filed with the subunit of the department that licenses residential care centers for children and youth and group homes.
48.745(3) (3)Upon receipt of a formal complaint, the county department may investigate the premises and records and question the licensee, staff, and residents of the residential care center for children and youth or group home involved. The county department shall attempt to resolve the situation through negotiation and other appropriate means.
48.745(4) (4)If no resolution is reached, the county department shall forward the formal complaint, results of the investigation and any other pertinent information to the unit within the department which is empowered to take further action under this chapter against the facility. The unit shall review the complaint and may conduct further investigation, take enforcement action under this chapter or dismiss the complaint. The department shall notify the complainant in writing of the final disposition of the complaint and the reasons therefor. If the complaint is dismissed, the complainant is entitled to an administrative hearing conducted by the department to determine the reasonableness of the dismissal.
48.745(5) (5)If the county department designates the department to receive formal complaints, the subunit under s. 48.743 (3) shall receive the complaints and the department shall have all the powers and duties granted to the county department in this section.
48.75 48.75 Foster homes licensed by public licensing agencies and by child welfare agencies.
48.75(1b)(1b)In this section, “public licensing agency" means a county department or, in a county having a population of 750,000 or more, the department.
48.75(1d) (1d)Child welfare agencies, if licensed to do so by the department, and public licensing agencies may license foster homes under the rules promulgated by the department under s. 48.67 governing the licensing of foster homes. Except as provided under s. 48.66 (6), a foster home license shall be issued for a term not to exceed 2 years from the date of issuance and is not transferable. A foster home license may be revoked by the child welfare agency or by the public licensing agency because the licensee has violated any provision of this chapter or of the rules of the department promulgated under s. 48.67 or because the licensee fails to meet the minimum requirements for a license. The licensee shall be given written notice of any revocation and the grounds for the revocation.
48.75(1g) (1g)
48.75(1g)(a)(a) A public licensing agency may license a foster home only if the foster home is located in the county of the public licensing agency, except that a public licensing agency may license a foster home located in another county if any of the following applies:
48.75(1g)(a)1. 1. The person who will be licensed to operate the foster home is a relative or a guardian of the child who will be placed in the foster home.
48.75(1g)(a)2. 2. A foster parent licensed by the public licensing agency moves to the other county with a child who has been placed in the foster parent's home and the license will allow the foster parent to continue to care for that child.
48.75(1g)(a)3. 3. The county of the public licensing agency issuing the license and the county in which the foster home is located are contiguous.
48.75(1g)(a)4. 4. The county of the public licensing agency issuing the license has a population of 750,000 or more and the placement is for adoption under s. 48.833 (1), 48.835, or 48.837.
48.75(1g)(a)5. 5. The public licensing agency of the county in which the prospective foster home is located requests the public licensing agency of another county to license the foster home.
48.75(1g)(b) (b) A license issued under par. (a) 1. or 4. shall specifically identify each child to be placed in the foster home and shall terminate at the end of the licensing period or 6 months after the child returns home or is placed elsewhere, whichever occurs first.
48.75(1g)(c) (c) No license may be issued under par. (a) 1., 2., or 3. unless the public licensing agency issuing the license has notified the public licensing agency of the county in which the foster home will be located of its intent to issue the license and no license issued under par. (a) 2. or 3. is valid unless the 2 public licensing agencies have entered into a written agreement under this paragraph. A public licensing agency is not required to enter into any agreement under this paragraph allowing the public licensing agency of another county to license a foster home within its jurisdiction. The written agreement shall include all of the following:
48.75(1g)(c)1. 1. A statement that the public licensing agency issuing the license has placement and care responsibility for the child as required under 42 USC 672 (a) (2) and has primary responsibility for providing services to the child who is placed in the foster home, as specified in the agreement.
48.75(1g)(c)2. 2. A statement that the public licensing agency issuing the license is responsible for the costs of the placement and any related costs, as specified in the agreement.
48.75(1g)(c)3. 3. A description of the procedures to be followed in providing emergency services to the child who is placed in the foster home and to the foster parent, as specified in the agreement.
48.75(1g)(cm) (cm) Notwithstanding that a written agreement under par. (c) is not required for the issuance of a license under par. (a) 1., the public licensing agency issuing the license shall have the responsibilities specified in par. (c) 1., shall be responsible for the costs specified in par. (c) 2., and shall have in place the procedures specified in par. (c) 3.
48.75(1g)(d) (d) If the public licensing agency issuing a license under par. (a) 2. or 3. violates the agreement under par. (c), the public licensing agency of the county in which the foster home is located may terminate the agreement and, subject to ss. 48.217, 48.32, 48.357, 48.437, 48.64, 938.217, 938.32, and 938.357, require the public licensing agency that issued the license to remove the child from the foster home within 30 days after receipt, by the public licensing agency that issued the license, of notification of the termination of the agreement.
48.75(1m) (1m)Each child welfare agency and public licensing agency shall provide the department of health services with information about each person who is denied a license for a reason specified in s. 48.685 (4m) (a) 1. to 5.
48.75(1r) (1r)At the time of initial licensure and license renewal, the child welfare agency or public licensing agency issuing a license under sub. (1d) or (1g) shall provide the licensee with written information relating to the monthly foster care rates and supplemental payments specified in s. 48.62 (4), including payment amounts, eligibility requirements for supplemental payments, and the procedures for applying for supplemental payments.
48.75(2) (2)Any foster home applicant or licensee of a public licensing agency or a child welfare agency may, if aggrieved by the failure to issue or renew its license or by revocation of its license, appeal as provided in s. 48.72.
48.75(3) (3)Before issuing a license under sub. (1d) or (1g), a child welfare agency or public licensing agency shall require that each foster parent receive a favorable report following an investigation that is conducted in the same manner as an investigation under s. 48.88 (2) (aj) is conducted.
48.76 48.76 Penalties. In addition to the sanctions and penalties provided in s. 48.715, any person who violates s. 48.60, 48.62, 48.625, 48.63 or 48.65 may be fined not more than $500 or imprisoned for not more than one year in county jail or both.
48.77 48.77 Injunction against violations. In addition to the penalties provided in s. 48.76, the circuit courts shall have jurisdiction to prevent and restrain by injunction violations of s. 48.60, 48.62, 48.625, 48.63 or 48.65. It shall be the duty of the district attorneys, upon request of the department, to institute action for such injunction under ch. 813.
48.77 History History: Sup. Ct. Order, 67 Wis. 2d 585, 773 (1975); 1977 c. 418 s. 929 (18); 1979 c. 300.
subch. XVII of ch. 48 SUBCHAPTER XVII
GENERAL PROVISIONS ON RECORDS
48.78 48.78 Confidentiality of records.
48.78(1)(1)Definition. In this section, unless otherwise qualified, “agency" means the department, a county department, a licensed child welfare agency, or a licensed child care center.
48.78(2) (2)Confidentiality; exceptions.
48.78(2)(a) (a) No agency may make available for inspection or disclose the contents of any record kept or information received about an individual who is or was in its care or legal custody, except as provided under sub. (2m) or s. 48.371, 48.38 (5) (b) or (d) or (5m) (d), 48.396 (3) (bm) or (c) 1r., 48.432, 48.433, 48.48 (17) (bm), 48.57 (2m), 48.66 (6), 48.93, 48.981 (7), 938.396 (2m) (c) 1r., 938.51, or 938.78 or by order of the court.
48.78(2)(ag) (ag) Paragraph (a) does not prohibit an agency from making available for inspection or disclosing the contents of a record, upon the request of the parent, guardian, or legal custodian of the child who is the subject of the record or upon the request of the child, if 14 years of age or over, to the parent, guardian, legal custodian, or child, unless the agency determines that inspection of the record by the child, parent, guardian, or legal custodian would result in imminent danger to anyone.
48.78(2)(aj) (aj) Paragraph (a) does not prohibit an agency from making available for inspection or disclosing the contents of a record, upon the request of a parent, guardian, or legal custodian of a child expectant mother of an unborn child who is the subject of the record, upon the request of an expectant mother of an unborn child who is the subject of the record, if 14 years of age or over, or upon the request of an unborn child's guardian ad litem, to the parent, guardian, legal custodian, expectant mother, or unborn child's guardian ad litem, unless the agency determines that inspection of the record by the parent, guardian, legal custodian, expectant mother, or unborn child's guardian ad litem would result in imminent danger to anyone.
48.78(2)(am) (am) Paragraph (a) does not prohibit an agency from making available for inspection or disclosing the contents of a record, upon the written permission of the parent, guardian, or legal custodian of the child who is the subject of the record or upon the written permission of the child, if 14 years of age or over, to the person named in the permission if the parent, guardian, legal custodian, or child specifically identifies the record in the written permission, unless the agency determines that inspection of the record by the person named in the permission would result in imminent danger to anyone.
48.78(2)(ap) (ap) Paragraph (a) does not prohibit an agency from making available for inspection or disclosing the contents of a record, upon the written permission of the parent, guardian, or legal custodian of a child expectant mother of an unborn child who is the subject of the record, or of an expectant mother of an unborn child who is the subject of the record, if 14 years of age or over, and of the unborn child's guardian ad litem, to the person named in the permission if the parent, guardian, legal custodian, or expectant mother, and unborn child's guardian ad litem, specifically identify the record in the written permission, unless the agency determines that inspection of the record by the person named in the permission would result in imminent danger to anyone.
48.78(2)(b) (b) Paragraph (a) does not apply to the confidential exchange of information between an agency and another social welfare agency, a law enforcement agency, a health care provider, as defined in s. 146.81 (1) (a) to (p), a public school, or a private school regarding an individual in the care or legal custody of the agency. A social welfare agency that obtains information under this paragraph shall keep the information confidential as required under this section and s. 938.78. A law enforcement agency that obtains information under this paragraph shall keep the information confidential as required under ss. 48.396 (1) and 938.396 (1) (a). A health care provider that obtains information under this paragraph shall keep the information confidential as provided under s. 146.82. A public school that obtains information under this paragraph shall keep the information confidential as required under s. 118.125, and a private school that obtains information under this paragraph shall keep the information confidential in the same manner as is required of a public school under s. 118.125. Paragraph (a) does not apply to the confidential exchange of information between an agency and officials of a tribal school regarding an individual in the care or legal custody of the agency if the agency determines that enforceable protections are provided by a tribal school policy or tribal law that requires tribal school officials to keep the information confidential in a manner at least as stringent as is required of a public school official under s. 118.125.
48.78(2)(c) (c) Paragraph (a) does not prohibit the department or a county department from using in the media a picture or description of a child in the guardianship of the department or a county department for the purpose of finding adoptive parents for that child.
48.78(2)(d) (d) Paragraph (a) does not prohibit the department of health services or a county department from disclosing information about an individual formerly in the legal custody or under the supervision of that department under s. 48.34 (4m), 1993 stats., or formerly under the supervision of that department or county department under s. 48.34 (4n), 1993 stats., to the department of corrections, if the individual is at the time of disclosure any of the following:
48.78(2)(d)1. 1. The subject of a presentence investigation under s. 972.15.
48.78(2)(d)2. 2. Under sentence to the Wisconsin state prisons under s. 973.15.
48.78(2)(d)4. 4. On probation to the department of corrections under s. 973.09.
48.78(2)(d)5. 5. On parole under s. 302.11 or ch. 304 or on extended supervision under s. 302.113 or 302.114.
48.78(2)(e) (e) Notwithstanding par. (a), an agency shall, upon request, disclose information to authorized representatives of the department of corrections, the department of health services, the department of justice, or a district attorney for use in the prosecution of any proceeding or any evaluation conducted under ch. 980, if the information involves or relates to an individual who is the subject of the proceeding or evaluation. The court in which the proceeding under ch. 980 is pending may issue any protective orders that it determines are appropriate concerning information made available or disclosed under this paragraph. Any representative of the department of corrections, the department of health services, the department of justice, or a district attorney may disclose information obtained under this paragraph for any purpose consistent with any proceeding under ch. 980.
48.78(2)(g) (g) Paragraph (a) does not prohibit an agency from disclosing information about an individual in its care or legal custody on the written request of the department of safety and professional services or of any interested examining board or affiliated credentialing board in that department for use in any investigation or proceeding relating to any alleged misconduct by any person who is credentialed or who is seeking credentialing under ch. 448, 455 or 457. Unless authorized by an order of the court, the department of safety and professional services and any examining board or affiliated credentialing board in that department shall keep confidential any information obtained under this paragraph and may not disclose the name of or any other identifying information about the individual who is the subject of the information disclosed, except to the extent that redisclosure of that information is necessary for the conduct of the investigation or proceeding for which that information was obtained.
48.78(2)(h) (h) Paragraph (a) does not prohibit the department, a county department, or a licensed child welfare agency from entering the content of any record kept or information received by the department, county department, or licensed child welfare agency into the statewide automated child welfare information system established under s. 48.47 (7g) or the department from transferring any information maintained in that system to the court under s. 48.396 (3) (bm). If the department transfers that information to the court, the court and the director of state courts may allow access to that information as provided in s. 48.396 (3) (c) 2.
48.78(2)(i) (i) Paragraph (a) does not prohibit an agency from disclosing information to a relative of a child placed outside of his or her home only to the extent necessary to facilitate the establishment of a relationship between the child and the relative or a placement of the child with the relative or from disclosing information under s. 48.21 (5) (e), 48.355 (2) (cm), or 48.357 (2v) (d). In this paragraph, “relative" includes a relative whose relationship is derived through a parent of the child whose parental rights are terminated.
48.78(2)(j) (j) Paragraph (a) does not prohibit an agency from disclosing information to any public or private agency in this state or any other state that is investigating a person for purposes of licensing the person to operate a foster home or placing a child for adoption in the home of the person.
48.78(2)(k) (k) Paragraph (a) does not prohibit the department of children and families from providing to the department of revenue, upon request, information concerning a recipient of payments under s. 48.57 (3m) or (3n) or aid under s. 48.645, including information contained in the electronic records of the department of children and families, solely for the purposes of administering state taxes, including verifying a claim for a state tax refund or a refundable state tax credit, and collecting debts owed to the department of revenue. Any information obtained by the department of revenue under this paragraph is subject to the confidentiality provisions specified in s. 71.78.
48.78(2)(L)1.1. In this paragraph, “ qualified independent researcher" means a faculty member of a university who satisfies all of the following:
48.78(2)(L)1.a. a. The faculty member has an approved protocol from an institutional review board for human subjects research to work with data containing personal information for the purposes of evaluating the program under s. 119.23.
48.78(2)(L)1.b. b. The faculty member has received from the state and properly managed data containing personal information for the purposes of evaluating the program under s. 119.23 before July 14, 2015.
48.78(2)(L)2. 2. Notwithstanding par. (a), the department shall permit a qualified independent researcher to have access to any database maintained by the department for the purpose of cross-matching information contained in any such database with a database that both is in the possession of the qualified independent researcher and contains information regarding pupils participating in the program under s. 119.23. The department may charge a fee to the qualified independent researcher for the information that does not exceed the cost incurred by the department to provide the information.
48.78(2m) (2m)Release of information when child is missing.
48.78(2m)(a)(a) If an agency that has responsibility for the placement, care, or supervision of a child, as determined by the department under par. (d), determines that the child is missing, the agency shall do all of the following:
48.78(2m)(a)1. 1. Within 8 hours after making that determination, report that determination to a local law enforcement agency for entry of that information into the national crime information databases, as defined in 28 USC 534 (f) (3) (A).
48.78(2m)(a)2. 2. Within 24 hours after making that determination, report that determination to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
48.78(2m)(a)3. 3. Share information about a missing child reported under subds. 1. and 2. with law enforcement agencies, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and other agencies that are involved in efforts to locate the missing child.
48.78(2m)(b) (b) An agency that has responsibility for the placement, care, or supervision of a child may photograph the child and maintain the photograph in the statewide automated child welfare information system. A report under par. (a) 1. or 2. shall be accompanied by a recent photograph of the missing child, if available.
48.78(2m)(c) (c) If permitted under s. 48.47 (7g), an agency may use the statewide automated child welfare information system to provide electronic information to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children under par. (a) 2. or 3.
48.78(2m)(d) (d) The department shall provide guidance to agencies as to the scope of the children to whom this subsection applies. Notwithstanding s. 227.10 (1), that guidance need not be promulgated as rules.
48.78(2m)(e) (e) The department of children and families and the department of health services may promulgate rules to implement this subsection.
48.78 Annotation The juvenile court must make a threshold relevancy determination by an in camera review when confronted with: 1) a discovery request under s. 48.293 (2); 2) an inspection request of juvenile records under ss. 48.396 (2) and 938.396 (2); or 3) an inspection request of agency records under ss. 48.78 (2) (a) and 938.78 (2) (a). The test for permissible discovery is whether the information sought appears reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence. Courtney F. v. Ramiro M.C. 2004 WI App 36, 269 Wis. 2d 709, 676 N.W.2d 545, 03-3018.
subch. XVIII of ch. 48 SUBCHAPTER XVIII
COMMUNITY SERVICES
48.79 48.79 Powers of the department. The department has authority and power:
48.79(4) (4)To assist communities in setting up recreational commissions and to assist them in extending and broadening recreational programs so as to reach all children.
48.79(5) (5)To assist in extending the local child care programs so as to reach all homes needing such help.
48.79(6) (6)To assist in recruiting and training voluntary leaders for youth-serving organizations.
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2017-18 Wisconsin Statutes updated through 2019 Wis. Act 50 and through all Supreme Court and Controlled Substances Board Orders filed before and in effect on December 6, 2019. Published and certified under s. 35.18. Changes effective after December 6, 2019, are designated by NOTES. (Published 12-6-19)