(1)(a) The Title IV-E Demonstration Project Committee is created. The members of the committee shall be appointed by the Director of Children and Family Services or his or her designee and shall include representatives of the Department of Health and Human Services and representatives of child welfare stakeholder entities, including one advocacy organization which deals with legal and policy issues that include child welfare, one advocacy organization the singular focus of which is issues impacting children, two child welfare service agencies that provide a wide range of child welfare services, and one entity which is a lead agency as of March 1, 2012. Members of the committee shall have experience or knowledge in the area of child welfare that involves Title IV-E eligibility criteria and activities. In addition, there shall be at least one ex officio member of the committee, appointed by the State Court Administrator. The ex officio member or members shall not be involved in decisionmaking, implementation plans, or reporting but may attend committee meetings, provide information to the committee about the processes and programs of the court system involving children and juveniles, and inform the State Court Administrator of the committee's activities. The committee shall be convened by the director within thirty days after April 12, 2012.
(b) The committee shall review, report, and provide recommendations regarding the application of the Department of Health and Human Services for a demonstration project pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 1320a-9 to obtain a waiver as provided in 42 U.S.C. 1320a-9(b), as such section existed on January 1, 2012. The committee may engage a consultant with expertise in Title IV-E demonstration project applications and requirements.
(c) The committee shall (i) review Nebraska's current status of Title IV-E participation and penetration rates, (ii) review strategies and solutions for raising Nebraska's participation rate and reimbursement for Title IV-E in child placement, case management, replacement, training, adoption, court findings, and proceedings, and (iii) recommend specific actions for addressing barriers to participation and reimbursement.
(d) The committee shall provide an implementation plan and a timeline for making application for a Title IV-E waiver. The implementation plan shall support and align with the goals of the statewide strategic plan required pursuant to section 43-4204, including, but not limited to, maximizing federal funding to be able to utilize state and federal funding for a broad array of services for children, including prevention, intervention, and community-based, in-home, and out-of-home services to attain positive outcomes for the safety and well-being of and to expedite permanency for children. The committee shall report on its activities to the Health and Human Services Committee of the Legislature on or before July 1, 2012, September 1, 2012, and November 1, 2012, and shall provide a final written report to the department, the Health and Human Services Committee of the Legislature, and the Governor by December 15, 2012.
(e) The Title IV-E Demonstration Project Committee is under the jurisdiction of the Nebraska Children's Commission created pursuant to section 43-4202. The commission may make changes it deems necessary to comply with this subsection to facilitate the application for such demonstration project.
(2) The committee's implementation plan shall address the demonstration project designed to meet the requirements of 42 U.S.C. 1320a-9, including, but not limited to, the following:
(a) Increasing permanency for children by reducing the time in foster care placements when possible and promoting a successful transition to adulthood for older youth;
(b) Increasing positive outcomes for children and families in their homes and communities, including tribal communities, and improving the safety and well-being of children;
(c) Preventing child abuse and neglect and the reentry of children into foster care; and
(d) Considering the options of developing a program to (i) permit foster care maintenance payments to be made under Title IV-E of the federal Social Security Act, as such act existed on January 1, 2012, to a long-term therapeutic family treatment center on behalf of children residing in such a center or (ii) identify and address domestic violence that endangers children and results in the placement of children in foster care.
(3) The implementation plan for the demonstration project shall include information showing:
(a) The ability and capacity of the department to effectively use the authority to conduct a demonstration project under this section by identifying changes the department has made or plans to make in policies, procedures, or other elements of the state's child welfare program that will enable the state to successfully achieve the goal or goals of the project; and
(b) That the department has implemented, or plans to implement within three years after the date of submission of its application under this section or within two years after the date on which the United States Secretary of Health and Human Services approves such application, whichever is later, at least two of the child welfare program improvement policies described in 42 U.S.C. 1320a-9(a)(7), as such section existed on January 1, 2012.
(4) At least one of the child welfare program improvement policies to be implemented by the Department of Health and Human Services under the demonstration project shall be a policy that the state has not previously implemented as of the date of submission of its application under this section.
(5) On or before July 1, 2013, the Department of Health and Human Services, in conjunction with the Office of Probation Administration, shall develop a policy for reimbursement of all allowable foster care maintenance costs as provided under Title IV-E of the federal Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. 672, as such act and section existed on January 1, 2013.
(6) For purposes of this section, long-term therapeutic family treatment center has the definition found in 42 U.S.C. 1320a-9(a)(8), as such section existed on January 1, 2012.