Costs Climbing For Hancock County Foster Care Cases

4/9/18 – 5:12 A.M.

The cost of placing kids in foster care in Hancock County has spiked over the last two years. The Department of Job and Family Services says they saw a 56 percent increase in costs between 2015 and 2017. During that time the office has also seen a 22 percent increase in the number of kids in foster care.

Diana Hoover is the director of Hancock County Job and Family Services. She says many of the problems stem from the opioid crisis. Hoover says kids born addicted to opioids and living in homes with addicted parents can lead to mental health and behavioral issues. Children with the most intensive special needs can cost the JFS $450 per day.

According to the 2018 Children’s Protective Services budget, the agency needs an extra $553,000 just to cover expenses just this year. The Department of Job and Family Services has a 1.2-mill property tax levy on the ballot this May. It would generate $2.3 million per year for 10 years.

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