The Total Cost of Child Welfare


Our survey of gubernatorial candidates’ positions on child welfare funding was encouraging.  

All three DFL’ers supported increases.  Republican Jeff Johnson wouldn’t make commitments in advance, but he supported increases for child protection and foster care as a Hennepin County Commissioner.  We haven’t received the completed survey from Republican Tim Pawlenty, but he told KSTP-TV reporters that he supports more child protection funding.

How much is needed?  The state contributes $102 million of $532 million total program costs, or 19%.  Most states provide 60% or more. It would take $200 million in new money to close that gap.

That’s a lot to get in one legislative session.  Some suggested 2019 priorities are funding for:

  • Increased foster care rates

  • Caseworker training

  • Court-related costs including County Attorneys, guardians ad litem, and public defenders.


What do you think?

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Rich Gehrman1 Comment