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Proposed Information Collection Activity; Comment Request

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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Title: Regional Partnership Grant (RPG) Program Data Collection.

OMB No.: 0970-0353.

Description

On September 30, 2007, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) Children's Bureau awarded multi-year grants to 53 regional partnerships grantees (RPGs) to improve the safety, permanency and well-being of children affected by methamphetamine or other substance abuse who have been removed or are at risk of removal from their home. The Child and Family Services Improvement Act of 2006, the authorizing legislation for the RPG program, required that a set of performance indicators be established to periodically assess the grantees' outcomes. The legislation mandated that these performance indicators be developed through a consultative process involving ACF, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), and representatives of the State or Tribal agencies who are members of the regional partnerships. The legislation also requires the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human services to submit annually to Congress a report that includes the performance indicators established under this grant program.

The final set of RPG performance indicators was approved by ACF and disseminated to the funded grantees in January 2008. It includes a total of 23 indicators across four outcome domains: Child/youth (9 indicators), adult (7 indicators), family/relationship (5 indicators), and regional partnership/service capacity (2 indicators). It also includes a core set of child and adult demographic elements that will provide important context needed to properly analyze, explain and understand the outcomes. No other national data collection measures these critical child, adult, family, and RPG outcomes specifically for these children and Start Printed Page 39403families. The data also will have significant implications for policy and program development for child well-being programs nationwide.

The purpose of this request is to obtain OMB approval for an extension of the original three year request which was approved on March 31, 2009. Forty-three of the original 53 grantees were awarded for a five-year grant period, thus necessitating an extension of the original request in order to continue data collection for the remainder of the grant period. The first submission of RPG grantee data to the RPG data collection system ocurred in December, 2008, and every six months thereafter. Data collection will be conducted for the fifth year of the grant period, ending September 30, 2012, with data submission by January 2013. Data collection may be extended for one year until January 2014 should grantees request and be granted no-cost extensions.

To minimize grantee data collection and reporting burden, many of the data elements are already being collected by counties and States in order to report Federally-mandated data for the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS), the Treatment Episode Data Set (TEDS) and the National Outcome Measures (NOMs); in addition, all States voluntarily submit data for the Federal National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System (NCANDS). Therefore, most child welfare data elements included in the RPG performance measures can be found in a State's automated case management system, which is often a Federally-funded Statewide Automated Child Welfare Information System (SACWIS). TEDS admission and discharge data are collected by State substance abuse agencies according to their own information systems for monitoring substance abuse treatment admissions and transmitted monthly or quarterly to the SAMHSA contractor.

As a result of prior Federal government reporting requirements, States are already collecting several data elements needed by the RPGs. The RPG lead agency or their state or local partners are able to download information from these existing State child welfare and substance abuse treatment data systems to obtain data to monitor their RPG program outcomes, thereby reducing the amount of primary data collection needed.

Respondents: RPG Grantees.

Annual Burden Estimates

InstrumentNumber of respondentsNumber of responses per respondentAverage burden hours per responseTotal burden hours
State, local, and Tribal Government262175.509,126
Private Sector172175.505,967
Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours15,093

In compliance with the requirements of Section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Administration for Children and Families is soliciting public comment on the specific aspects of the information collection described above.

Copies of the proposed collection of information can be obtained and comments may be forwarded by writing to the Administration for Children and Families, Office of Administration, Office of Information Services, 370 L'Enfant Promenade, SW., Washington, DC 20447, Attn: ACF Reports Clearance Officer. E-mail address: infocollection@acf.hhs.gov. All requests should be identified by the title of the information collection.

The Department specifically requests comments on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information; (c) the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Consideration will be given to comments and suggestions submitted within 60 days of this publication.

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Robert Sargis,

Reports Clearance Officer.

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[FR Doc. 2011-16789 Filed 7-5-11; 8:45 am]

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