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(a) The department may sanction a participating family or participating provider by placement on probation, suspension, or termination for the reasons set out in the applicable provisions of (b) or (c) of this section. The department will impose level of sanction necessary to ensure benefits are being paid in accordance with AS 14.38.100 - 14.38.150 and this chapter.
(b) A participating provider is subject to sanction under the program for the following reasons:
(1) failing to hold a current child care license to provide the services for which benefits are provided under the program;
(2) failing to maintain status as approved provider under the program, and to provide child care services in accordance with that approval;
(3) providing false or misleading information or withholding information in order to participate or receive payments under the program;
(4) failing to maintain books and records concerning the program and to cooperate with a review or investigation by a representative of the department or a grantee, including any refusal to allow inspection of those books and records at a provider's facility during scheduled business hours;
(5) billing for payment under the program for child care that did not conform to the licensing requirements set out in 4 AAC 62, approved provider requirements set out in 4 AAC 65.181 and 4 AAC 65.185, child care in the child's own home requirements set out in 4 AAC 65.327, if the nonconformance placed the health and safety of the children in care at significant risk of harm;
(6) failing to comply with requirements related to rates charged in accordance with 4 AAC 65.191;
(7) agreeing with a family to falsify attendance records under 4 AAC 65.185(c) (6) to reflect higher amounts of time that the child was in care than was used;
(8) failing to promptly bill for services in accordance with 4 AAC 65.251;
(9) failing to comply with any compliance action or corrective action plan established under 4 AAC 65.411, or to cooperate with the establishment of the plan.
(c) A family is subject to sanction under the program for the following reasons:
(1) failing to
(A) report complete, accurate, and current information regarding the family's income as specified by 4 AAC 65.381(1) and eligibility for benefits as specified by 4 AAC 65.281(a) and (b) and keep that information current with the program;
(B) comply with other family responsibilities for participation in the program as specified in 4 AAC 65.381(2) - (6);
(2) providing false or misleading information or withholding information in order to participate or receive benefits under the program;
(3) agreeing with a provider to falsify attendance records under 4 AAC 65.185(c) (6) to reflect higher amounts of time that the child was in care than was used;
(4) refusing to cooperate with a review or investigation by a representative of the department or grantee regarding
(A) eligibility for the family's benefits under the program;
(B) provision of services by a participating provider under the program;
(5) failing to comply with any compliance action or corrective action plan established under 4 AAC 65.411 or to cooperate with the establishment of the plan.
(d) Unless previously investigated under 4 AAC 65.411, the department will develop a protocol in consultation with the grantee to investigate allegations of violations of AS 14.38.100 - 14.38.150 and this chapter. The protocol must include one or more of the following methods of investigation:
(1) review and audit of records in the files of the provider, grantee, or department;
(2) announced or unannounced inspection visits of the provider by the department, unless the grantee is specifically authorized in the grantee's agreement in accordance with 4 AAC 65.073 to perform on-site inspections;
(3) scheduled office visits with the family;
(4) information received through contacts, including telephone conversations, electronic messages, and written inquiries; information received under this paragraph must be documented in the file.
(e) Unless excused or delayed under (g) of this section, the department will give notice to the participating family or participating provider of an investigation being conducted under this section. The participating family or participating provider shall cooperate with the investigation and provide any information to aid in resolution of the investigation.
(f) Unless excused or delayed under (g) of this section, the department will send the participating family or participating provider a summary of the results of the investigation and notice of intent to impose a sanction, if any. The notice of intent to impose a sanction must include the deadline and the procedure to request an appeal under 4 AAC 65.433.
(g) In a review in which the department determines that continuation in the program by the participating provider will result in an imminent threat to the health or safety of a child, the department will immediately give the provider notice of suspension during the period to fully investigate the claim. The emergency suspension is effective immediately and is for the period necessary to conduct the investigation and to reach a final decision of the department on the claim. The department will schedule and conduct an appeal on the emergency suspension following the provisions of 4 AAC 65.433, unless the participating provider agrees in writing to waive the appeal on the emergency suspension.
(h) The department may impose one or more conditions on the operations of the provider during the period of the probation to ensure compliance with AS 14.38.100 - 14.38.150 and this chapter. The conditions may include submitting additional reports, participating in additional inspections, attending training, securing consulting advice, and other matters to improve the performance of the provider during the period of the probation. The department will specify the period of the probation in its determination. The provider may request the department to remove or adjust the conditions of probation, if the provider contends that the goals of the probation have been met before the end of the period of probation.
(i) A participating provider may not bill the department or the grantee for services provided under this chapter during the period of suspension or for services provided after the provider is terminated from the program. The department will remove suspended or terminated providers from the list of approved providers specified in 4 AAC 65.044. The department will reinstate a participating provider that was suspended to the list of approved providers after the provider's period of suspension is successfully completed and the provider continues to meet the requirements to be an approved provider under this chapter. If termination from the program is imposed, the department will delete a provider from the list of approved providers specified in 4 AAC 65.044, effective on the date of issuance of the final decision of the department. A termination imposed by a final decision is permanent and the family or provider may not reapply to participate in the program.
History: Eff. 9/12/97, Register 143; am 9/11/2002, Register 163; am 11/10/2002, Register 164
Authority: AS 14.07.060
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Last modified 7/05/2006