DFPS Announces Implementation Plan for 4 New Catchment Areas & Stage III Transitions

In December 2022, the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) released a new plan for Community-Based Care (CBC), proposing that four new catchment areas receive funding from the 88th Legislature. Those four catchment areas are Bexar County (Region 8A), Harris County (Region 6A), Bay Area/Montgomery (Region 6B), and El Paso (Region 10). This proposal was issued even though the agency has still not issued contracts in any of the catchment areas that were funded by the 87th Legislature, which included Metroplex East (Region 3E), Piney Woods (Region 4), Deep East (Region 5) and Permian/Concho (Region 9). While DFPS announced that they did not receive any contract bids for Region 9, the other three regions have been in negotiations with potential contractors for months. In spite of these setbacks, the agency expects Community-Based Care to be fully implemented statewide by FY 2029. Here is a map of the newly proposed and existing areas for CBC implementation.

Although they have not awarded contracts in all of their funded areas, DFPS is still actively accepting Single Source Continuum Contractor (SSCC) unsolicited bid proposals in the remaining catchment areas. In fact, on Jan. 4, 2023, the Office of Community-Based Care Transition (OCBCT) received an unsolicited proposal for Central Texas/Waco (Region 7A) and an additional four counties in Permian/Concho (Region 9) and one county in the Bay Area/Montgomery (Region 6B). The counties include Bell, Blanco, Bosque, Burleson, Burnet, Brazos, Caldwell, Coryell, Falls, Freestone, Grimes, Hamilton, Hays, Hill, Kimble, Lampasas, Leon, Limestone, Llano, Madison, Mason, McCulloch, McLennan, Menard, Milam, Mills, Robertson, San Saba, Walker, Washington and Williamson. The agency estimates that it will take approximately three months to announce a contract decision in that area.

Following the implementation of Stage II with Belong in South Central/Hill Country (Region 8B), DFPS announced plans to begin Stage III implementation in FY 2023 for Our Community Our Kids (Region 3B/3W), 2Ingage (Region 2), Saint Francis Ministries (Region 1), and Belong (Region 8B). While timeframes may vary for each SSCC, Stage III implementation is estimated to begin at least 18 months after the SSCC has begun providing case management services to all children and families in the community area (Stage II). In Stage III, financial incentives are introduced to encourage SSCCs to safely move children out of paid foster care settings into placements with their own parents, kinship caregivers, and/or adoptive placements. Each SSCC will be given a baseline upon which to measure their performance, and the financial incentives that the SSCC will receive are tied to their improvement upon their individual baseline. The incentives will be funded based on the average general revenue portion of what the state would have paid for those children to remain in foster care. Additionally, if the SSCC’s strategies and efforts do not work and children remain in paid care longer on average compared to their baseline, the SSCC will be assessed financial remedies.

You can find more information about Community-Based Care in the 2nd Edition of Texas CASA’s Community-Based Care Guide or on the DFPS website.