Dependency courts oversight bill dies in Assembly
A bill that would have allowed public oversight of court hearings that consider foster care placements and other sensitive child-welfare decisions was put on hold Tuesday in an Assembly committee, effectively killing if for the remainder of the Legislative year.
AB 73, by Assemblyman Mike Feuer (D-Los Angeles), was supported by many child advocates, the presiding judge of Los Angeles County children’s court and the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors.
The bill was opposed by social workers whose work would regularly be available for public review for the first time, as well as the California Youth Connection, former Senate leader John Burton and the court-appointed lawyers who represent children in the Los Angeles County system.
Feuer had said the bill would have provided badly needed oversight to the state's child welfare system. “We need to hold everyone in the system accountable,” he said.
-- Garrett Therolf