(20 ILCS 505/5.15)
    Sec. 5.15. Daycare; Department of Human Services.
    (a) For the purpose of ensuring effective statewide planning, development, and utilization of resources for the day care of children, operated under various auspices, the Department of Human Services is designated to coordinate all day care activities for children of the State and shall develop or continue, and shall update every year, a State comprehensive day-care plan for submission to the Governor that identifies high-priority areas and groups, relating them to available resources and identifying the most effective approaches to the use of existing day care services. The State comprehensive day-care plan shall be made available to the General Assembly following the Governor's approval of the plan.
    The plan shall include methods and procedures for the development of additional day care resources for children to meet the goal of reducing short-run and long-run dependency and to provide necessary enrichment and stimulation to the education of young children. Recommendations shall be made for State policy on optimum use of private and public, local, State and federal resources, including an estimate of the resources needed for the licensing and regulation of day care facilities.
    A written report shall be submitted to the Governor and the General Assembly annually on April 15. The report shall include an evaluation of developments over the preceding fiscal year, including cost-benefit analyses of various arrangements. Beginning with the report in 1990 submitted by the Department's predecessor agency and every 2 years thereafter, the report shall also include the following:
        (1) An assessment of the child care services, needs
    
and available resources throughout the State and an assessment of the adequacy of existing child care services, including, but not limited to, services assisted under this Act and under any other program administered by other State agencies.
        (2) A survey of day care facilities to determine the
    
number of qualified caregivers, as defined by rule, attracted to vacant positions and any problems encountered by facilities in attracting and retaining capable caregivers. The report shall include an assessment, based on the survey, of improvements in employee benefits that may attract capable caregivers.
        (3) The average wages and salaries and fringe benefit
    
packages paid to caregivers throughout the State, computed on a regional basis, compared to similarly qualified employees in other but related fields.
        (4) The qualifications of new caregivers hired at
    
licensed day care facilities during the previous 2-year period.
        (5) Recommendations for increasing caregiver wages
    
and salaries to ensure quality care for children.
        (6) Evaluation of the fee structure and income
    
eligibility for child care subsidized by the State.
    The requirement for reporting to the General Assembly shall be satisfied by filing copies of the report with the Speaker, the Minority Leader, and the Clerk of the House of Representatives, the President, the Minority Leader, and the Secretary of the Senate, and the Legislative Research Unit, as required by Section 3.1 of the General Assembly Organization Act, and filing such additional copies with the State Government Report Distribution Center for the General Assembly as is required under paragraph (t) of Section 7 of the State Library Act.
    (b) The Department of Human Services shall establish policies and procedures for developing and implementing interagency agreements with other agencies of the State providing child care services or reimbursement for such services. The plans shall be annually reviewed and modified for the purpose of addressing issues of applicability and service system barriers.
    (c) In cooperation with other State agencies, the Department of Human Services shall develop and implement, or shall continue, a resource and referral system for the State of Illinois either within the Department or by contract with local or regional agencies. Funding for implementation of this system may be provided through Department appropriations or other inter-agency funding arrangements. The resource and referral system shall provide at least the following services:
        (1) Assembling and maintaining a data base on the
    
supply of child care services.
        (2) Providing information and referrals for parents.
        (3) Coordinating the development of new child care
    
resources.
        (4) Providing technical assistance and training to
    
child care service providers.
        (5) Recording and analyzing the demand for child care
    
services.
    (d) The Department of Human Services shall conduct day care planning activities with the following priorities:
        (1) Development of voluntary day care resources
    
wherever possible, with the provision for grants-in-aid only where demonstrated to be useful and necessary as incentives or supports. By January 1, 2002, the Department shall design a plan to create more child care slots as well as goals and timetables to improve quality and accessibility of child care.
        (2) Emphasis on service to children of recipients of
    
public assistance when such service will allow training or employment of the parent toward achieving the goal of independence.
        (3) (Blank).
        (4) Care of children from families in stress and
    
crises whose members potentially may become, or are in danger of becoming, non-productive and dependent.
        (5) Expansion of family day care facilities wherever
    
possible.
        (6) Location of centers in economically depressed
    
neighborhoods, preferably in multi-service centers with cooperation of other agencies. The Department shall coordinate the provision of grants, but only to the extent funds are specifically appropriated for this purpose, to encourage the creation and expansion of child care centers in high need communities to be issued by the State, business, and local governments.
        (7) Use of existing facilities free of charge or for
    
reasonable rental whenever possible in lieu of construction.
        (8) Development of strategies for assuring a more
    
complete range of day care options, including provision of day care services in homes, in schools, or in centers, which will enable a parent or parents to complete a course of education or obtain or maintain employment and the creation of more child care options for swing shift, evening, and weekend workers and for working women with sick children. The Department shall encourage companies to provide child care in their own offices or in the building in which the corporation is located so that employees of all the building's tenants can benefit from the facility.
        (9) Development of strategies for subsidizing
    
students pursuing degrees in the child care field.
        (10) Continuation and expansion of service programs
    
that assist teen parents to continue and complete their education.
    Emphasis shall be given to support services that will help to ensure such parents' graduation from high school and to services for participants in any programs of job training conducted by the Department.
    (e) The Department of Human Services shall actively stimulate the development of public and private resources at the local level. It shall also seek the fullest utilization of federal funds directly or indirectly available to the Department.
    Where appropriate, existing non-governmental agencies or associations shall be involved in planning by the Department.
    (f) To better accommodate the child care needs of low income working families, especially those who receive Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) or who are transitioning from TANF to work, or who are at risk of depending on TANF in the absence of child care, the Department shall complete a study using outcome-based assessment measurements to analyze the various types of child care needs, including but not limited to: child care homes; child care facilities; before and after school care; and evening and weekend care. Based upon the findings of the study, the Department shall develop a plan by April 15, 1998, that identifies the various types of child care needs within various geographic locations. The plan shall include, but not be limited to, the special needs of parents and guardians in need of non-traditional child care services such as early mornings, evenings, and weekends; the needs of very low income families and children and how they might be better served; and strategies to assist child care providers to meet the needs and schedules of low income families.
(Source: P.A. 92-468, eff. 8-22-01.)