Title 17. Education

Chapter 1. General School Law

Part X-B. Early Learning Center Licensing


17:407.46      Operating in violation of regulations; penalties and fines


A. (1) For violations related to supervision, criminal history record checks, the state central registry disclosure form, staff-to-child ratios, motor vehicle checks, or failure to report critical incidents, the department may issue a written warning that includes a corrective action plan, in lieu of revocation, upon any person or entity violating these requirements if such condition or occurrence does not pose an imminent threat to the health, safety, rights, or welfare of a child. Failure to implement a corrective action plan issued pursuant to this Section may result in either the assessment of a civil fine or license revocation or may result in both actions being taken by the department. Such civil fine shall not exceed two hundred fifty dollars per day for each assessment; however, the aggregate fines assessed for violations determined in any consecutive twelve-month period shall not exceed two thousand dollars.


(2) The State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education shall adopt rules in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act that articulate factors in determining the type of sanction imposed including the severity of risk, the actual harm and mitigating circumstances, the failure to implement a written corrective action plan, the history of noncompliance, an explanation of the treatment of continuing and repeat deficiencies, evidence of a good-faith effort to comply, and any other relevant factors. The authority to impose sanctions pursuant to this Section shall commence on the effective date of the rules promulgated pursuant to this Section.


B. The State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education shall adopt rules and regulations in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act to provide for notice to the early learning center of any violation, for a departmental reconsideration process for sanctions issued, and for an appeal procedure including judicial review. Such appeal shall be suspensive. All appeals pursuant to this Subsection shall be heard by the division of administrative law pursuant to Chapter 13-B of Title 49 of the Louisiana Revised Statutes of 1950. The division shall furnish to the facility or agency a copy of the decision, together with notice of the manner for requesting judicial review. During the pendency of an appeal, an early learning center may continue to receive funding for services provided to those eligible children as determined by the department.


C. The department may institute any necessary civil court action to collect fines imposed and not timely appealed. No child care facility shall claim imposed fines as reimbursable. Interest shall begin to accrue at the current judicial rate on the day following the date on which any fines become due and payable. All costs of any successful action to collect such fines, including travel expenses and reasonable attorney fees, shall be awarded to the department in addition to the fines.


D. (1) Civil fines collected pursuant to the provisions of this Section shall be deposited immediately into the treasury.


(2) After compliance with the requirements of Article VII, Section 9(B) of the Constitution of Louisiana relative to the Bond Security and Redemption Fund, and prior to the monies being placed in the state general fund, an amount equal to the amount deposited as provided in Paragraph (1) of this Subsection shall be credited to a special fund hereby created in the state treasury to be known as the “Early Learning Center Licensing Trust Fund”, hereinafter referred to as “the fund”. The monies in the fund shall be subject to annual appropriation and shall be available exclusively for use by the department for the education and training of employees, staff, or other personnel of child care facilities.


(3) The monies in the fund shall be invested by the treasurer in the same manner as the monies in the state general fund, and all interest earned from the investment of monies in the fund shall be deposited in and remain to the credit of the fund. All unexpended and unencumbered monies remaining in the fund at the end of the fiscal year shall remain in the fund.


Added by Acts 2014, No. 868, § 2, eff. Oct. 1, 2014.