senate Bill S2764

2011-2012 Legislative Session

Requires probation, investigation and diagnostic assessment of certain juvenile delinquents with discernible handicapping conditions prior to dispositional hearings

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Archive: Last Bill Status - In Committee


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor

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Actions

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Assembly Actions - Lowercase
Senate Actions - UPPERCASE
Mar 12, 2012 committee discharged and committed to rules
notice of committee consideration - requested
Jan 04, 2012 referred to children and families
Feb 01, 2011 referred to children and families

S2764 - Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A822
Current Committee:
Senate Rules
Law Section:
Family Court Act
Laws Affected:
Amd ยงยง351.1 & 353.4, Fam Ct Act
Versions Introduced in 2009-2010 Legislative Session:
S7251, A2406

S2764 - Bill Texts

view summary

Provides that prior to a dispositional hearing the judge shall order a probation investigation and a diagnostic assessment of a juvenile delinquent whom the court reasonably finds, on the record, to have a demonstrable need for a remediation of a discernible handicapping condition; allows judges to refer custody through various state agencies for placement into programs under protocol and funding provisions currently in existence.

view sponsor memo
BILL NUMBER:S2764

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
to amend the family court act, in relation to probation,
investigation and diagnostic assessment of juvenile
delinquents or any other juvenile delinquent whom the court
reasonably finds, on the record, to have a demonstrable
need for a remediation of a discernible handicapping condition

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:
To enable the court system to identify youths with learning and
developmental disabilities at an early intercept point and to enhance
the courts' ability to deal with these problems.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
To amend section 351.1 of the Family Court Act, which pertains to
Juvenile Delinquency (a juvenile delinquent being defined as an
individual between the ages of seven and fifteen who has been found
guilty in Family Court of an act that would constitute a crime if
perpetrated by an adult.)

A.) Adds to subsection 1 that the felony requirement before affecting
an action by assessment with the phrase: "or any other juvenile
delinquent whom the court reasonably finds, on the record, to have a
demonstrable need for a remediation of a discernible handicapping
condition."

B.) Adds to sub-section 2, at the end, "The diagnostic assessment
shall be completed by an interdisciplinary team, consisting of, but
not limited to, a psychologist, a social worker, a special educator,
a physician, and a law guardian and/or legal counsel."

C.) Family Court Act -- section 353.4, sub-section 1 changes the law
to "or the commissioner of mental health or the commissioner of
mental retardation and developmental disabilities consistent with
placement provisions as outlined in chapter seven hundred fifty-seven
of the laws of nineteen hundred eighty-seven, chapter five hundred
sixty-three of the laws of nineteen hundred eighty and article
eighty-one of the education law, and/or any voluntary or
not-for-profit agency licensed under these provisions of law not
inconsistent with the rules and regulations governing the placement
of clients." In sub-section 1, "the office for people with" is added
to describe the commissioner of developmental disabilities.

D.) section 353.4, sub-section 4 -- changes the law to include "the
interdisciplinary team established in subdivision three of section
351.1 of this part."

E.) Where the division for youth is mentioned, the following language
is added, "office of children and family services."

JUSTIFICATION:
Amendments to section 351 of the Family Court Act would allow for the
development of an interdisciplinary team that will accept referrals
from family court judges prior to a dispositional hearing. These


amendments will allow judges to refer custody through various state
agencies for placement into programs under protocol and funding
provisions currently in state law. Under current law, family court
judges are not required to have assessments undertaken for a youth
suspected of manifesting developmental and learning disabilities,
mental illness and/or mental retardation.

Moreover, probation departments currently lack the expertise to
conduct referrals or to interpret information gathered for a family
court judge.

Recent studies have shown that very large numbers of the youths
petitioned into family court (up to 70%) have some type of mental or
developmental handicap. Implementation of early interception programs
in areas where they can be used to assist these individuals would
help stop the steady stream of young people that are slipping through
the cracks in the system.

This bill seeks to emphasize the developing role and the capacity of
the probation system in linking treatment, habilitation,
rehabilitation, and education programs to youth at the dispositional
hearing stage when appropriate. Numerous studies indicate that the
current process of placing these youths is neither cost-effective nor
programmatically effective, since many youths are institutionalized
within the juvenile justice system without the opportunity to receive
employable skills or appropriate services. The interdisciplinary team
would provide the probation system with the essential tools to
reasonably determine the needs of youth for mental health, mental
retardation, and developmental disabilities and other services before
they become caught up in the juvenile justice system.

The cost of the interdisciplinary team would dramatically lessen the
costs to the state for inappropriate placements and in many cases the
need for institutionalization. Funding provisions for such placements
are outlined in Chapter 563 of the laws of 1980.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
Senate
2009-10: S.7251 - Referred to Children and Families

Assembly
2009-10: A.2406(Gantt) - Referred to Children and Families

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS FOR STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS:
Undetermined.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
This act shall take effect on the first of November next succeeding
the date on which it shall have become a law.

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                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  2764

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                            February 1, 2011
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen. HASSELL-THOMPSON -- read twice and ordered printed,
  and when printed to be committed to  the  Committee  on  Children  and
  Families

AN ACT to amend the family court act, in relation to probation, investi-
  gation  and diagnostic assessment of juvenile delinquents or any other
  juvenile delinquent whom the court reasonably finds, on the record, to
  have a demonstrable need for a remediation of a discernible  handicap-
  ping condition

  THE  PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section 1. Subdivision 1 of section 351.1 of the family court act,  as
amended  by  chapter  398  of  the  laws  of 1983, is amended to read as
follows:
  1. Following a determination that a respondent has committed a  desig-
nated felony act OR ANY OTHER JUVENILE DELINQUENT WHOM THE COURT REASON-
ABLY FINDS, ON THE RECORD, TO HAVE A DEMONSTRABLE NEED FOR A REMEDIATION
OF  A  DISCERNIBLE HANDICAPPING CONDITION and prior to the dispositional
hearing, the judge shall order a probation investigation and a  diagnos-
tic assessment. For the purposes of this article, the probation investi-
gation shall include, but not be limited to, the history of the juvenile
including  previous  conduct, the family situation, any previous psycho-
logical and psychiatric  reports,  school  adjustment,  previous  social
assistance  provided by voluntary or public agencies and the response of
the juvenile to such assistance. For the purposes of this  article,  the
diagnostic  assessment  shall include, but not be limited to, psycholog-
ical tests and psychiatric interviews to determine mental  capacity  and
achievement,  emotional  stability  and  mental  disabilities.  It shall
include a clinical assessment of the situational factors that  may  have
contributed  to  the act or acts. When feasible, expert opinion shall be
rendered as to the risk presented by the juvenile to others or  himself,
with a recommendation as to the need for a restrictive placement.

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD03214-01-1

S. 2764                             2

  S  2. Subdivision 3 of section 351.1 of the family court act, as added
by chapter 920 of the laws of 1982, is amended to read as follows:
  3. A child shall not be placed in accord with section 353.3 unless the
court  has  ordered a probation investigation prior to the dispositional
hearing; a child shall not be placed in accord with section 353.4 unless
the court has ordered a diagnostic assessment prior to such hearing. THE
DIAGNOSTIC ASSESSMENT SHALL BE COMPLETED BY  AN  INTERDISCIPLINARY  TEAM
CONSISTING  OF,  BUT  NOT LIMITED TO, A PSYCHOLOGIST, A SOCIAL WORKER, A
SPECIAL EDUCATOR, A PHYSICIAN, AND A LAW GUARDIAN AND/OR LEGAL COUNSEL.
  S 3. Subdivisions 1 and 4 of section 353.4 of the  family  court  act,
subdivision 1 as amended by chapter 465 of the laws of 1992 and subdivi-
sion  4 as added by chapter 920 of the laws of 1982, are amended to read
as follows:
  1. If at the conclusion of the dispositional hearing and in accordance
with section 352.2 the court finds that  the  respondent  has  a  mental
illness,  mental  retardation or developmental disability, as defined in
section 1.03 of the mental hygiene law, which is  likely  to  result  in
serious  harm to himself or others, the court may issue an order placing
such respondent with the [division for youth]  OFFICE  OF  CHILDREN  AND
FAMILY  SERVICES  or, with the consent of the local commissioner, with a
local commissioner of social services, OR  THE  COMMISSIONER  OF  MENTAL
HEALTH  OR  THE COMMISSIONER OF THE OFFICE FOR PEOPLE WITH DEVELOPMENTAL
DISABILITIES CONSISTENT WITH PLACEMENT PROVISIONS AS OUTLINED IN CHAPTER
SEVEN HUNDRED FIFTY-SEVEN OF THE LAWS OF NINETEEN HUNDRED SEVENTY-SEVEN,
CHAPTER FIVE HUNDRED SIXTY-THREE OF THE LAWS OF NINETEEN HUNDRED  EIGHTY
AND  ARTICLE  EIGHTY-ONE  OF  THE EDUCATION LAW, AND/OR ANY VOLUNTARY OR
NOT-FOR-PROFIT AGENCY LICENSED UNDER THESE PROVISIONS OF LAW NOT  INCON-
SISTENT  WITH  THE  RULES  AND  REGULATIONS  GOVERNING  THE PLACEMENT OF
CLIENTS.  Any such order shall direct the temporary transfer for  admis-
sion  of  the  respondent  to  the custody of either the commissioner of
mental health or the commissioner of [mental retardation and] THE OFFICE
FOR PEOPLE WITH developmental disabilities who shall arrange the  admis-
sion  of the respondent to the appropriate facility of the department of
mental hygiene. The director of a hospital operated  by  the  office  of
mental  health  may,  subject  to  the provisions of section 9.51 of the
mental hygiene law, transfer a person admitted to the hospital  pursuant
to this subdivision to a residential treatment facility for children and
youth,  as  that  term  is defined in section 1.03 of the mental hygiene
law, if care and treatment in such a facility would  more  appropriately
meet  the  needs  of  the respondent. Persons temporarily transferred to
such custody under this provision may be retained for care and treatment
for a period of up to one year and whenever appropriate shall be  trans-
ferred  back  to  the [division for youth] OFFICE OF CHILDREN AND FAMILY
SERVICES pursuant to the provisions of section five hundred nine of  the
executive  law  or  transferred back to the local commissioner of social
services. Within thirty days of such transfer back, application shall be
made by the [division for youth] OFFICE OF CHILDREN AND FAMILY  SERVICES
or  the  local  commissioner  of social services to the placing court to
conduct a further dispositional hearing at which the court may make  any
order  authorized  under  section  352.2,  except that the period of any
further order of disposition shall  take  into  account  the  period  of
placement hereunder. Likelihood to result in serious harm shall mean (a)
substantial risk of physical harm to himself as manifested by threats or
attempts  at suicide or serious bodily harm or other conduct demonstrat-
ing he is dangerous to himself or (b) a  substantial  risk  of  physical
harm to other persons as manifested by homicidal or other violent behav-

S. 2764                             3

ior  by  which  others  are  placed in reasonable fear of serious bodily
harm.
  4.  No  order of disposition placing the respondent in accordance with
this section shall be entered except upon clear and convincing  evidence
which  shall  include  the  testimony  of  [two  examining physicians as
provided in section two hundred fifty-one]  THE  INTERDISCIPLINARY  TEAM
ESTABLISHED IN SUBDIVISION THREE OF SECTION 351.1 OF THIS PART.
  S 4. This act shall take effect on the first of November next succeed-
ing the date on which it shall have become a law.

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