The Kentucky General Assembly enacted Senate Bill 66, which gives further guidance to city-run youth camps on background checks for camp workers and licensing and permit requirements for the camp. The law now specifically includes certain camps run by local governments in the definition of “youth camp,” eliminating uncertainty as to who must comply with background check requirements. SB 66 also specifically excludes local government youth day camps from having to be licensed as childcare centers or obtain permits, and ongoing inspections, from the local health department.
The law defines a local government youth day camp as a camp:
If your city’s youth camp meets the criteria above, any worker or volunteer must obtain:
The requirement for background checks also extends to contract or self-employed employees, volunteers, and interns whose employment “directly involves the care or supervision of children or unsupervised access to children placed with a youth camp or camp or local government youth day camp.” KRS 194A.380(5).
The city operating the youth camp should retain these forms along with the employee, contractor, or volunteer application. Please note there are open records implications for criminal records and abuse/neglect records. Call KLC with any questions on what to release.
Additionally, a city operating a youth camp, as defined above, must post a sign at each camp it operates stating:
"State law requires a national and state criminal background check and a letter from the Cabinet for Health and Family Services stating the staff member (employee) is clear to hire based on no findings of substantiated child abuse or neglect found through a background check of child abuse and neglect records as a condition of employment or involvement in this program.”
A local government youth day camp (that meets all criteria above) shall not employ, contract, or utilize as a volunteer, in any position, any staff member who has been convicted of or who has entered a plea of guilty to a criminal offense against a minor or sex crime, who is a violent offender, or who has been found by the Cabinet for Health and Family Services or a court to have abused or neglected a child. KRS 194A.382(1).
Any person who owns or operates a youth camp or camp or a local government youth day camp that receives public funds and who knowingly allows an individual who is a staff member to serve or continue to serve as an employee, contractor, or volunteer despite a conviction or offense specified in this section shall be guilty of a Class A misdemeanor for the first offense and a Class D felony for each subsequent offense. KRS 194A.383(3).
Also, the new law specifies that local government youth day camps shall not be required to be licensed as a childcare center as defined in KRS 199.894 or obtain a permit under KRS 211.180, which relates to inspection of the day camp by local health departments.
KLC will continue monitoring and awaiting the adoption of regulations and update members on changes regarding the youth camp requirements. Please call the Municipal Law Department with any questions at 800.876.4552.