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Who We Are

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​DCBS services are administered through nine service regions and offices serving all 120 Kentucky counties. In addition, DC​​​​​BS uses a network of contract officials to deliver services, such as child care. Service is enhanced through a close relationship and coordination with community partners.

The department provides family support; child care; child and adult protection; eligibility determinations for Medicaid and food benefits; and administration of an energy cost-assistance program.

The department administers the state foster care and adoption systems and recruits and trains parents to care for the state's children who are waiting for a permanent home.

With offices in every county, the department provides services and programs to enhance the self-sufficiency of families; improve safety and permanency for children and vulnerable adults; and engage families and community partners in a collaborative decision-making process.

The department was formed in the Cabinet for Families and Children in 1998 to give local offices more decision-making authority and the ability to collaborate more effectively with other community service providers.

Administrative Regulations Notice

May 2023

The Department for Community Based Services (DCBS)​ filed proposed amendments and new regulations with the Legislative Research Commission (LRC). These will be published on the LRC website and here​.

922 KAR 2:180, Requirements for registered child care providers in the Child Care Assistance Program. This amendment addresses non-compliances that were noted during Kentucky’s federal monitoring visit conducted in 2022. The federal government has urged amendments be made in this administrative regulation for consistency with Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) rules. Through this amendment, only relatives of children in care will be able to be approved as registered child care providers. Non-relative providers will have to become certified child care providers. The DCBS Division of Child Care (DCC) has made Family Child Care Provider grant funding available to individuals who open a new certified family child care home. The grant application is available online​

Because registered providers will only be relatives once effective, many requirements are being deleted from this administrative regulation, including a notice of intent to apply. 45 C.F.R. 98.42(b)(2)(ii) provides the authority for license-exempt child care providers, which includes relatives, to operate as long as they comply with health and safety standards. This includes grandparents, great grandparents, siblings (if they live in a separate residence), aunts, and uncles providing care for children related to them. Forms incorporated in this administrative regulation are also being amended to clarify that registered child care providers will be required to be related to the children in their care.

Written comments may be submitted to the Office of Regulatory Affairs through July 31, 2023. Upon request made to the Office of Regulatory Affairs​ by July 17, 2023, a public hearing shall be held on Jul 24, 2023, at 9 a.m. via Zoom.

DCC-96 Application for Registered Child Care Provider in Child's Home Changes

922 KAR 1:360&E.  Private child care placement, levels of care, and payment. This amendment increases the per diem rates for specific levels of care provided for children with the highest needs in the custody of the state. The annual audited cost report and time study and preliminary data from the most recent rate study have been evaluated and the Department for Community Based Services (DCBS) has determined that a mid-cycle inflation adjustment is necessary to adequately reimburse child-placing and child-caring providers. Because documentation and analysis show that this rate increase is justified and needed, federal funding will be utilized in implementing this amendment. Documentation that the department received from the Children’s Alliance requests that, “this rate increase be implemented as soon as possible as private child-caring and child-placing agencies are struggling to cover their rapidly rising costs given the swift and unprecedented inflation rates, respond to the workforce crisis that has ensued since the pandemic and meet the increased need for behavioral health services.  Providers need financial relief as soon as possible…”.  

Material incorporated by reference is also being amended to reflect this rate increase. The emergency version is in effect. The ordinary amendment also requires a private foster home agency to reimburse its foster homes at least what corresponding public foster homes are reimbursed for providing care. This version will undergo public and legislative review prior to becoming effective.

Written public comments on the emergency version may be submitted to the Office of Regulatory Affairs through June 30, 2023.  Upon request made to the Office of Regulatory Affairs by June 19, 2023, a public hearing shall be held on June 26, 2023, at 9 a.m. via Zoom. 

Written public comments on the ordinary version may be submitted to the Office of Regulatory Affairs​ through July 31, 2023. Upon request made to the Office of Regulatory Affairs​ by July 17, 2023, a public hearing shall be held on July 24, 2023, at 9 a.m. via Zoom​. 

922 KAR 2:245 and 2:255. These administrative regulations establish the process for child care provider staff to voluntarily apply for and obtain these new child care credentials – infant and toddler and school-aged youth development. Credentials assist in increasing the professionalism in the early childhood education field. Additionally, this will help increase the quality of trainings offered across the state, as they are specialized and focused on the age group and content area of the credential. When providers take trainings tailored to the age group of children they serve, it increases the quality of care for those children and their families. New forms are incorporated in these administrative regulations.

Written comments may be submitted to the Office of Regulatory Affairs through July 31, 2023. Upon request made to the Office of Regulatory Affairs​ by July 17, 2023, a public hearing shall be held on July 24, 2023, at 9am using Zoom.

February 2023

​The Department for Community Based Services filed proposed amendments to the below administrative regulations with the Legislative Research Commission. The regulation will be published on the LRC website. These are ordinary proposed amendments that are currently in the public comment period and will go through the full regulatory process prior to becoming effective.

922 KAR 1:100.  Public agency adoptions.  This amendment establishes and clarifies provisions for public agency adoptions and the procedural steps for a referral of a child to the Kentucky Adoption Profile Exchange (KAPE), which contains photos and information on children who are available for adoption in Kentucky. The amendment includes actions that must be taken by a social service worker to promote adoption awareness and child-specific recruitment for children legally free for adoption without an identified adoptive home. This administrative regulation is being amended to clarify transitional requirements for inquiring and prospective adoptive parents. The DPP-171A is a new form being incorporated and utilized for the verbal exchange of information with inquiring adoptive parents. The previously incorporated material, the DPP-171, is being amended for consistency with the new form and to clarify that it is used with prospective adoptive parents. 

922 KAR 1:330.  Child protective services.  This amendment elevates and improves the department response to human trafficking and moves reports of human trafficking from being considered as exploitation neglect to a separate, specific offense.  The proposed administrative regulation clarifies that human trafficking includes child sex trafficking or child labor trafficking.  This amendment also defines alternative response, a preventive and proactive approach through which the cabinet engages with a family and connects a family to community-based services as an alternative to conducting a child protective services investigation.
​Written comments may be submitted to the Office of Regulatory Affairs through April 30, 2023. Upon request to the Office of Regulatory Affairs​ by April 17, 2023, a public hearing will be held April 24, 2023 at 9 a.m. via Zoom.


The mission of the Department for Community Based Services is to build an effective and efficient system of care with Kentucky citizens and communities to:

  • Reduce poverty, adult and child maltreatment and their effects; ​
  • Advance person and family self-sufficiency, recovery and resiliency;
  • Assure all children have safe and nurturing homes and communities; and
  • Recruit and retain a workforce and partners that operate with integrity and transparency.

Our Vision

A human services system of care that operates with integrity and loyalty to a code of ethics requires courage to take responsibility for providing the highest quality of service to the vulnerable.

The Department for Community Based Services is an innovative, solutions-focused learning organization built on a foundation of transparency in action and with accountability for results. Both in the organization and among our partners, we thrive on a culture of respect for diversity of opinion that is nurtured through open communication.

Highly performing and committed, we are unified in our goal of excellence in achieving outcomes for those we serve with the level of quality we would demand for our own families.