340:40-13-5. Child care provider contracts
(a) Criteria. A child care program owner and the Oklahoma Human Services (OKDHS) Director or his or her designee must sign Form 08CC001E, Child Care Provider Contract, before OKDHS pays for out-of-home child care services. By signing the contract, the child care provider agrees to not take into account a person's race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or disability in deciding which children to accept in the child care program or in how services are provided to them. Age may be a factor only to the extent that certain services are designed for a particular age group.
(1) Written complaints that a child care provider is not complying with assurances in (a) of this Section are made to the OKDHS Director or to the Secretary of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C., 20201.
(2) Local Child Care Services (CCS) licensing staff provides initial contract information for child care programs. The child care provider contacts Adult and Family Services (AFS), Child Care Subsidy Unit staff to request a contract.
(3) Child care contracts are valid for a maximum of one year. Contracts may be renewed at the sole option of OKDHS for successive one year terms per (g) of this Section.
(b) License and star status for child care centers and homes. OKDHS does not contract with out-of-state child care providers. Child care providers only obtain an OKDHS contract after they are licensed or permitted.
(1) A child care center provider requesting a contract is required to have a license or permit and a one plus or higher star status. Community Hope Centers are exempt from participation in the Stars quality rating system.
(2) A child care home provider requesting a contract is required to have a license or a permit.
(A) When licensed, the child care home provider may have a one star or higher status.
(B) When on permit, the child care home provider must have a one star of one star plus or higher status.
(c) Procedure for obtaining child care contracts. The procedures in (1) through (5) of this subsection are used to obtain child care contracts.
(1) CSS licensing staff gives the child care provider OKDHS Publication 07-12, "Obtaining a Contract with OKDHS for Child Care Subsidy Payments" and instructs the provider to contact AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff to obtain an OKDHS child care contract. • 1
(2) When a child care program owner or another person authorized to sign the contract contacts AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff, staff explains that he or she must provide documents listed in (A) through (D) of this paragraph before signing a contract. Documents include a copy of:
(A) a document that verifies the identity of the owner or responsible person authorized to sign the contract;
(B) a document from the Internal Revenue Service verifying the employer identification number. A home child care provider who is not a sole proprietor may provide a copy of his or her Social Security card in lieu of the employer identification number;
(C) the certificate of completion for the required online "Orientation to Child Care Subsidy Contracts" training; and • 1
(D) ownership verification. • 1
(3) Once the owner provides the required documents, AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff sends Form 08CC001E to the child care provider and explains that the earliest date a contract is valid is the date the OKDHS Director or designee approves the contract.
(4) The owner or person authorized to sign the contract signs and returns the contract to the AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit.
(5) AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff processes the contract request for approval or denial.
(A) When approved, AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff assigns a contract number and sends a copy of the signed contract to the child care provider.
(B) When denied, AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff sends a letter to the child care provider.
(d) Changes the provider must report. Form 08CC001E informs child care providers of changes they must report to the AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit no less than 30-calendar days prior to the effective date of any changes. When the provider fails to report the anticipated change timely and a new contract is needed, a gap may occur in the child care subsidy payment to the provider. Changes that must be reported include:
(1) collaborations or agreements;
(2) ownership change;
(3) legal business entity change;
(4) change in facility status;
(5) legal name change of the business;
(6) plan to stop caring for children;
(7) star status reduction;
(8) changes in the responsible person authorized to sign the contract or in that person's legal name;
(9) disqualification, suspension, or debarment from the Child and Adult Food Care Program or any other federal program;
(10) when a person who has an ownership or employment relationship with the child care provider is convicted of a criminal offense; and
(11) provider address change.
(e) Changes that require a new contract. A new contract is required when changes listed in (1) through (3) of this subsection occur. • 2
(1) Change in ownership. An ownership change occurs when the owner of a child care program changes.
(2) Change of legal business entity. A change of legal business entity is a change from one legal business entity type to another. Refer to OKDHS Appendix L-7, Ownership Proof Chart, for a list of legal business entity types.
(3) Change in facility status. A change in facility status occurs when a child care home changes to a child care center or a child care center changes to a child care home.
(f) Providing care at a different site than is authorized. When the child care provider signs the child care contract, he or she agrees to provide care only at the physical address designated in the contract.
(1) After obtaining prior approval from AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff, a child care center provider owning more than one child care center may be authorized to move children receiving subsidized child care benefits to an alternate center for a designated time period. A child care center provider should not move a point-of-service (POS) machine or submit electronic claims for care at another location until the provider receives approval from AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff.
(2) AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff may provide written approval when (A) through (E) of this paragraph are met.
(A) The same owner or legal business entity operates the alternate site.
(B) The alternate site is licensed and contracted at the same star level and the child care provider has adequate licensed capacity at the alternate site.
(C) There is a legitimate business reason for providing care in another location.
(D) The provider advises AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff how he or she is ensuring parents are aware their children are being cared for at a different location.
(E) The provider advises AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff of the date of expected return to the contracted site.
(g) Child care contract renewal. Child care contracts may be renewed at the sole option of OKDHS for successive one-year terms, under the same terms and conditions, unless OKDHS makes changes to Form 08CC001E. The child care contract is not renewed when:
(1) the child care provider or OKDHS gives written notice of its intent not to renew to the other party at least 30-calendar days prior to the previous contract term's expiration; or
(2) during the contract renewal period, the provider fails to:
(A) complete all required contract training; or
(B) provide any other information or documents requested.
(h) Contract violations. By signing the child care provider contract, Form 08CC001E, the child care provider agrees to abide by the contract's terms. When county staff becomes aware a child care provider is violating contract terms, he or she emails the circumstances to AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff. • 3 County staff may also complete Form 19MP001E, Referral Form, to report the violation to the Office of Inspector General. Examples of contract violations include, but are not limited to:
(1) discriminating against persons seeking services by charging a discriminatory rate or violating a person's rights as listed in the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as amended, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended, or the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended;
(2) failing to maintain a drug-free workplace;
(3) operating over licensed capacity;
(4) possessing a client's electronic benefit transfer (EBT) card or recording attendance for a child using the POS machine or the ECC Connect mobile app;
(5) knowing a client's EBT personal identification number (PIN);
(6) refusing a parent or caretaker unlimited access to the facility areas used for child care during operation hours;
(7) failing to ensure the parent or caretaker records accurate time and attendance information using the POS machine or the ECC Connect mobile app. When a child is approved for a blended unit type or part-time care, the parent or caretaker is only required to record attendance one time per day because the number or hours the child attends does not affect the child care provider payment amount;
(8) charging a client receiving subsidized child care more than the OKDHS rate for days and hours OKDHS authorizes; • 4
(9) charging a client receiving subsidized child care an allowable fee when not charged to non-OKDHS participants; • 5
(10) failing to post all of the facility's rates and fees;
(11) charging or requiring a client to record attendance for days and hours outside of client's child care plan when those days and hours are a requirement imposed by the child provider and not the client's choice; • 4
(12) failing to advise and provide OKDHS a completed copy of any collaboration or agreement the child care provider enters into within 30-calendar days of signing the collaboration or agreement. This includes agreements with Head Start, Early Head Start, public schools, or other programs receiving federal or state funding;
(13) claiming or receiving payment from OKDHS for any care hours the provider is not charging all parents because the provider receives federal or state funds for those hours. Refer to Oklahoma Administrative Code (OAC) 340:40-5-1(7) regarding collaborations;
(14) claiming child care payment for care given for any hours in an unlicensed collaborative classroom;
(15) moving the children from the agreed upon location shown in the contract and claiming for services at the other location without prior, approval from AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff;
(16) moving the POS machine or submitting electronic claims without receiving prior, approval from AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff, per subsection (f) of this Section;
(17) failing to inform OKDHS of a change in facility status, legal business entity, business ownership, or the responsible person at least 30-calendar days in advance of the change;
(18) failing to inform OKDHS in writing within 10-calendar days of any person who has an ownership or controlling interest in, or is an agent or managing employee of, the child care business, who was convicted of a criminal offense related to such person's involvement under Titles XVIII, XIX, or XX of the Social Security Act;
(19) failing to allow full access to the facility's premises and personnel to investigate a complaint;
(20) failing to report the new child care business income within 10-calendar days of first receipt to the child care provider's AFS worker when he or she receives benefits;
(21) a home child care provider claiming payment for child care provided for an employee's child. Refer to OAC 340:40-5-1(7);
(22) subcontracting services to another provider; or
(23) breaching the contract the child care provider signs with the OKDHS EBT contractor.
(i) Child care provider contract cancellation. AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff issues a notice to the child care provider to initiate child care contract cancellation. When AFS cancels a contract, all open child care authorizations for that provider close automatically. • 6 Contracts may be cancelled:
(1) with cause. The effective cancellation date is 13-calendar days after AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff mails the notice. This allows three-calendar days for mailing time. The notice contains a reference to the grounds for cancellation including the specific contract provision(s) violated; or
(2) without cause. The effective cancellation date is 33-calendar days after AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff mails the notice. This allows three-calendar days for mailing time. • 8
NSTRUCTIONS TO STAFF 340:40-13-5
1. (a) Adult and Family Services (AFS) Child Care Subsidy Unit staff facilitates contracting processes. When a child care provider requests a child care contract from county office staff, the provider is directed to contact AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff by emailing CCProviderContracts@okdhs.org.
(b) The date on the certificate of completion must be is dated no earlier than 30-calendar days before the date the child care program owner signs the contract.
(c) AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff determine what ownership documents are required based on the business entity type.
2. Child Care Services (CCS) and AFS staff work together to avoid or reduce any gap in the child care subsidy payment. A gap in the child care subsidy payment may occur when the new child care program owner does not complete the procedure for obtaining child care contracts at least 30-calendar days prior to the ownership or business entity change.
3. (a) AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff evaluates the child care provider's circumstances and willingness to stop the practice. Depending on the circumstances, AFS Unit staff may:
(1) decide no further action is needed;
(2) initiate a corrective action plan;
(3) request that county office staff completes Form 19MP001E, Referral Form, to start an investigation; or
(4) decide to cancel the child care provider's contract.
(b) When AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff recommends Form 19MP001E be completed, county staff:
(1) enters as much detail as possible about the violation including the:
(A) name of the person reporting the violation;
(B) allegation content; and
(C) phone number for the person reporting the violation; and
(2) attaches any written documentation supporting the allegation.
(c) When a client reports a violation, the client may provide a written statement, instead of completing Form 19MP001E, explaining the circumstances.
4. When the child care provider requires all children be in attendance by a certain time every morning regardless of the parent's or caretaker's child care needs, the provider must not charge the client for those additional hours.
(1) Reasons the provider may give for this requirement include limiting disruptions to program content so all children participate fully in the child care program's quality content or reducing provider transportation costs.
(2) For example, when the client's work or school schedule does not begin until 11:00 a.m., but the provider requires attendance by 9:00 a.m., the client records attendance by entering a previous in for 11:00 a.m. using the point-of-service machine or the ECC Connect mobile app when the child is picked up at the end of the day.
5. Examples of non-allowable fees are vacation or place-holding fees when a child is absent or a termination fee when the child stops attending the facility.
6. When Oklahoma Human Services (OKDHS) cancels a provider contract, AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff sends an email regarding contract cancellation proceedings to:
(2) Finance and Administration Electronic Payment Systems (EPS) Unit;
(3) Office of Inspector General (OIG);
(4) the electronic benefit transfer contractor; and
(5) the Oklahoma State Department of Education, Child Care Food Program.
7. (a) When OKDHS OIG recently audited the child care facility and OKDHS then cancels the facility's contract without cause, the cancellation letter includes:
(1) a reminder of the OIG audit or investigation finding that criteria was met for contract cancellation; and
(2) information advising the child care provider that the OKDHS child care subsidy contract ends 33-calendar days from the date AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff mailed the cancellation letter to the provider.
(b) Reasons a contract might be cancelled following an OIG audit or investigation include violations per (h) of this Section.
(c) Additional reasons a child care provider contract may be cancelled without cause include, but are not limited to, when:
(1) CCS staff revokes the provider's child care license;
(2) persons with previous contract cancellations following an OIG audit or investigation become owners, authorized representatives, or materially involved in the child care facility's business;
(3) the provider has an outstanding overpayment debt with OKDHS as a client or as a provider;
(4) the provider receives OKDHS benefits and his or her benefits close due to a fraud or willful misrepresentation finding;
(5) AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff become aware that a provider was convicted of a felony;
(6) AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff become aware that a provider was debarred, suspended, disqualified, proposed for debarment, or declared ineligible by any federal department or agency, or convicted of a fraud-related crime;
(7) the provider is convicted of food benefit trafficking;
(8) the provider requests contract cancellation;
(9) facility ownership changes;
(10) a one star center provider no longer has open child care authorizations;
(11) AFS Child Care Subsidy Unit staff become aware that a provider committed a contract violation;
(12) the provider has a history of non-compliance with OKDHS policies and procedures; or
(13) the provider has not had an active authorization at their child care facility for at least 30-calendar days.