Summary: S.249 — 106th Congress (1999-2000)All Information (Except Text)

Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Passed House amended (05/25/1999)

Missing, Exploited, and Runaway Children Protection Act - Amends the Missing Children's Assistance Act to direct the Administrator of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention to annually make a grant to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, which shall be used to: (1) operate a national 24-hour toll- free telephone line by which individuals may report information regarding the location of any missing child, or other child age 13 or younger whose whereabouts are unknown to such child's legal custodian, and request information pertaining to procedures necessary to reunite such child with the child's legal custodian; (2) coordinate the operation of such telephone line with the operation of the national communications system referred to in the Runaway and Homeless Youth Act; (3) operate the official national resource center and information clearinghouse for missing and exploited children; (4) provide to State and local governments, public and private nonprofit agencies, and individuals, information regarding free or low-cost legal, restaurant, lodging and transportation services that are available for the benefit of missing and exploited children and their families, and the existence and nature of programs being carried out by Federal agencies to assist missing and exploited children and their families; (5) coordinate public and private programs that locate, recover, or reunite missing children with their families; (6) disseminate, on a national basis, information relating to innovative and model programs, services, and legislation that benefit missing and exploited children; (7) provide technical assistance and training to law enforcement agencies, State and local governments, elements of the criminal justice system, public and private nonprofit agencies, and individuals in the prevention, investigation, prosecution, and treatment of cases involving missing and exploited children; and (8) provide assistance to families and law enforcement agencies in locating and recovering missing and exploited children, both nationally and internationally. Authorizes appropriations through FY 2003.

Requires the Administrator, either by making grants to or entering into contracts with public or nonprofit private agencies, to: (1) periodically conduct national incidence studies to determine for a given year the actual number of children reported missing each year, abducted by strangers, kidnaped by parents, and recovered each year; and (2) provide to State and local governments, public and private nonprofit agencies, and individuals information to facilitate the lawful use of school records and birth certificates to identify and locate missing children.

Authorizes the Administrator to make grants to and enter contracts with the Center for specified purposes, such as for research, demonstration projects, or service programs designed to assist in the location and return of missing children. (Currently, such grants or contracts may be made with only public or nonprofit private organizations, or combinations thereof.) Authorizes appropriations through FY 2003.

(Sec. 3) Amends the Runaway and Homeless Youth Act (the Act) to: (1) include findings that it is the responsibility of the Federal Government to assist in the development of an accurate national reporting system on runaway and homeless youth and that services for such youth are needed in urban, suburban, and rural areas; (2) authorize the Secretary of Health and Human Services to make grants to public and nonprofit private entities to establish and operate local centers to provide services for such youth and their families; (3) require a grant applicant, to be eligible for assistance, to include assurances that the applicant shall submit an annual report that includes, with respect to the year for which the report is submitted, statistical summaries describing the number and the characteristics of such youth and youth at risk of family separation who participated in the project and the services provided to such youth by the project; and (4) modify the services that applicants must plan to provide in order to use grant money for street-based, home-based, and drug abuse education and prevention services.

Revises Act provisions regarding: (1) approval of applications to direct the Secretary to consider the geographical distribution in the State of the proposed services and which areas of the State have the greatest need for such services, and to give priority to eligible applicants who have demonstrated experience in providing services to runaway and homeless youth and who request grants of less than $200,000; (2) authority for the transitional living grant program to repeal definitions of "homeless youth" and "transitional living youth project"; (3) eligibility for assistance by stating that the annual report submitted by grant applicants to the Secretary must include statistical summaries describing the number and characteristics of the services provided to the homeless youth; (4) coordination by the Secretary, in conjunction with the Attorney General, of the activities of the Department of Health and Human Services with respect to matters relating to the health, education, employment, and housing of runaway and homeless youth; and (5) authority to make grants for research, demonstration, and service projects to repeal references to home-based and street based services from the research and demonstration projects.

Directs the Secretary to: (1) conduct a study of a representative sample of runaways to determine the percentage who leave home because of sexual abuse; and (2) report to Congress.

Repeals provisions of the Act directing that assistance to potential grantees include information on the need for the establishment of additional runaway and homeless youth centers in the geographical area identified by the potential grantee involved.

Amends the Act to require the Secretary, by April 1, 2000, and biennially thereafter, to submit to specified congressional committees a report on the status, activities, and accomplishments of entities that receive grants under the Act. Lists information that must be included in the report. Requires the Secretary to include summaries of the Secretary's evaluations of grantees and descriptions of the qualifications and training of the individuals administering the evaluations.

Authorizes appropriations under such Act through FY 2003. Sets forth the division of appropriations among the programs.

Authorizes the Secretary to make grants to nonprofit private agencies to provide street-based services to runaway and homeless, and street youth, who have been subjected to, or are at risk of being subjected to, sexual abuse, prostitution, or sexual exploitation. Directs the Secretary to give priority to nonprofit private agencies that have experience in providing services to runaway and homeless, and street youth.

Authorizes appropriations for FY 2000 through 2003.

Authorizes the Secretary to: (1) announce the availability of funds for grants under two or more of such parts; and (2) review applications for grants under two or more of such parts in a single, consolidated application review process.

(Sec. 4) Directs the Secretary of Education to enter into a contract with the National Academy of Sciences to conduct a study regarding the antecedents of school violence in urban, suburban, and rural schools. Sets forth reporting requirements. Makes specified funds available to carry out this section.