Home > 107th Congressional Bills > S. 658 (is) To amend title 32, United States Code, to authorize units of the National Guard to conduct small arms competitions and athletic competitions, and for other purposes. [Introduced in Senate] ...

S. 658 (is) To amend title 32, United States Code, to authorize units of the National Guard to conduct small arms competitions and athletic competitions, and for other purposes. [Introduced in Senate] ...


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108th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                 S. 657

   To amend title IV of the Social Security Act to provide grants to 
promote responsible fatherhood, to encourage teen pregnancy prevention 
                  strategies, and for other purposes.


_______________________________________________________________________


                   IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

                             March 19, 2003

Mr. Bayh (for himself and Mr. Lieberman) introduced the following bill; 
     which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Finance

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
   To amend title IV of the Social Security Act to provide grants to 
promote responsible fatherhood, to encourage teen pregnancy prevention 
                  strategies, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE; TABLE OF CONTENTS.

    (a) Short Title.--This Act may be cited as the ``Strengthening 
Families Act of 2003''.
    (b) Table of Contents.--The table of contents of this Act is as 
follows:

Sec. 1. Short title; table of contents.
Sec. 2. Findings.
Sec. 3. Responsible fatherhood grants.
Sec. 4. National clearinghouse for responsible fatherhood programs.
Sec. 5. Block grants to States to encourage media campaigns.
Sec. 6. Grants to conduct policy reviews and demonstration projects to 
                            coordinate services for low-income, 
                            noncustodial parents.
Sec. 7. Court-supervised noncustodial parent employment grant program.
Sec. 8. Teen pregnancy prevention grants.
Sec. 9. Teen pregnancy prevention resource center.
Sec. 10. Establishing national goals to prevent teen pregnancy.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    Congress makes the following findings:
            (1) Nearly 24,000,000 children in the United States, or 34 
        percent of all such children, live apart from their biological 
        father.
            (2) Sixty percent of couples who divorce have at least 1 
        child.
            (3) The number of children living with only a mother 
        increased from just over 5,000,000 in 1960, to 17,000,000 in 
        1999, and between 1981 and 1991 the percentage of children 
        living with only 1 parent increased from 19 percent to 25 
        percent.
            (4) Forty percent of children who live in households 
        without a father have not seen their father in at least 1 year 
        and 50 percent of such children have never visited their 
        father's home.
            (5) The most important factor in a child's upbringing is 
        whether the child is brought up in a loving, healthy, 
        supportive environment.
            (6) Children who live without contact with their biological 
        father are, in comparison to children who have such contact--
                    (A) 5 times more likely to live in poverty;
                    (B) more likely to bring weapons and drugs into the 
                classroom;
                    (C) twice as likely to commit crime;
                    (D) twice as likely to drop out of school;
                    (E) more likely to commit suicide;
                    (F) more than twice as likely to abuse alcohol or 
                drugs; and
                    (G) more likely to become pregnant as teenagers.
            (7) Violent criminals are overwhelmingly males who grew up 
        without fathers.
            (8) Between 20 and 30 percent of families in poverty are 
        headed by women who have suffered domestic violence during the 
        past year and between 40 and 60 percent of women with children 
        receiving welfare were abused sometime during their life.
            (9) Responsible fatherhood includes active participation in 
        financial support and child care, as well as the formation and 
        maintenance of a positive, healthy, and nonviolent relationship 
        between father and child and a cooperative relationship between 
        parents.
            (10) States should be encouraged to implement programs that 
        provide support for responsible fatherhood, promote marriage, 
        and increase the incidence of marriage, and should not be 
        restricted from implementing such programs.
            (11) Fatherhood programs should promote and provide support 
        services for--
                    (A) loving and healthy relationships between 
                parents and children; and
                    (B) cooperative parenting.
            (12) There is a social need to reconnect children and 
        fathers.
            (13) The promotion of responsible fatherhood and 
        encouragement of married 2-parent families should not--
                    (A) denigrate the standing or parenting efforts of 
                single mothers or other caregivers;
                    (B) lessen the protection of children from abusive 
                parents; or
                    (C) compromise the safety or health of the 
                custodial parent;
        but should increase the chance that children will have two 
        caring parents to help them grow up healthy and secure.
            (14) The promotion of responsible fatherhood must always 
        recognize and promote the values of nonviolence.
            (15) For the future of the United States and the future of 
        our children, Congress, States, and local communities should 
        assist parents to become more actively involved in their 
        children's lives.
            (16) Child support is an important means by which a parent 
        can take financial responsibility for a child and emotional 
        support is an important means by which a parent can take social 
        responsibility for a child.
            (17) The United States is making significant progress in 
        reducing teen births, with national teen birth rates declining 
        26 percent since 1991.
            (18) Despite declining national and State rates, in the 
        United States 4 out of 10 girls get pregnant at least once by 
        age 20, nearly 1,000,000 girls each year. There are nearly 
        500,000 teen births each year.
            (19) Although teen pregnancy and birth rates are declining, 
        the United States still has the highest rates of teen pregnancy 
        and birth in the industrialized world, nearly twice as high as 
        the next highest nation, Great Britain.
            (20) Some 52 percent of all mothers on welfare had their 
        first child as a teenager, according to the most recent data 
        available. Almost \1/2\ of all teen mothers and over \3/4\ of 
unmarried teen mothers began receiving welfare within 5 years of the 
birth of their first child.
            (21) At present, 79 percent of births to teen mothers are 
        out-of-wedlock and nearly \1/2\ of all non-marital first births 
        occur to teens.
            (22) Children of teen mothers are more likely to be born 
        prematurely and at low birth weight, to perform poorly in 
        school, and to suffer abuse and neglect than children born to 
        older women. Girls born to teen mothers are 22 percent more 
        likely to become teen mothers, and sons of teen mothers are 
        more likely to end up in jail.
            (23) Teen mothers are likely to have a second birth 
        relatively soon, about \1/4\ of teenage mothers have a second 
        child within 24 months of the first birth, which can further 
        impede the teen mother's ability to finish school or keep a job 
        and to escape poverty.
            (24) Teen pregnancy and childbearing costs United States 
        taxpayers at least $7,000,000,000 per year.
            (25) Teen marriages are twice as likely to fail as 
        marriages where the woman is at least 25 years old.
            (26) Many of the fathers of children born to teen mothers 
        are older. Half of those young men who impregnate a minor teen 
        (under age 18) are 3 or more years older than the young woman. 
        Eight of 10 teen fathers do not marry the mothers of their 
        first children and these absent fathers pay less than $800 
        annually in child support, often because they are quite poor 
        themselves.
            (27) Over 90 percent of both adults and teens believe it is 
        important that teens be given a strong message from society 
        that they should abstain from sex until they are at least out 
        of high school. A substantial majority of both adults and teens 
        also believe that, while teens should not be sexually active, 
        those that are should have access to contraception.
            (28) A synthesis of research on the effectiveness of media 
        campaigns in the United States suggests that these campaigns 
        may reduce risky health behaviors by as much as 5 to 10 percent 
        at a very low cost.
            (29) There is rigorous evaluation research about a variety 
        of programs that are effective in delaying the onset of sex, 
        improving contraceptive use, or preventing pregnancy among 
        adolescents.
            (30) Between 1995 and 2010, the number of girls who are 15 
        to 19 years old is estimated to increase by 2,200,000. If 
        current fertility rates remain the same, there would be a 26 
        percent increase in the number of pregnancies and births among 
        teenagers between 1995 and 2010.
            (31) If teen birth rates had stayed at the 1991 peak level 
        through 2001, there would have been nearly 800,000 additional 
        babies born to teenagers.
            (32) The national teen birth rate for Hispanic teens--the 
        fastest growing group--is declining the slowest.

SEC. 3. RESPONSIBLE FATHERHOOD GRANTS.

    Part D of title IV of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 651 et 
seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following:

``SEC. 469C. RESPONSIBLE FATHERHOOD GRANTS.

    ``(a) Grants to States To Conduct Demonstration Programs.--
            ``(1) Authority to award grants.--
                    ``(A) In general.--The Secretary shall award grants 
                to up to 10 eligible States to conduct demonstration 
                programs to carry out the purposes described in 
                paragraph (2).
                    ``(B) Eligible state.--For purposes of this 
                subsection, an eligible State is a State that submits 
                to the Secretary the following:
                            ``(i) Application.--An application for a 
                        grant under this subsection, at such time, in 
                        such manner, and containing such information as 
                        the Secretary may require.
                            ``(ii) State plan.--A State plan that 
                        includes the following:
                                    ``(I) Project description.--A 
                                description of the types of projects 
                                the State will fund under the grant, 
                                including a good faith estimate of the 
                                number and characteristics of clients 
                                to be served under such projects and 
                                how the State intends to achieve at 
                                least 2 of the purposes described in 
                                paragraph (2).
                                    ``(II) Coordination efforts.--A 
                                description of how the State will 
                                coordinate and cooperate with State and 
                                local entities responsible for carrying 
                                out other programs that relate to the 
                                purposes intended to be achieved under 
                                the demonstration program, including as 
                                appropriate, entities responsible for 
                                carrying out jobs programs and programs 
                                serving children and families.
                                    ``(III) Records, reports, and 
                                audits.--An agreement to maintain such 
                                records, submit such reports, and 
                                cooperate with such reviews and audits 
                                as the Secretary finds necessary for 
                                purposes of oversight of the 
                                demonstration program.
                            ``(iii) Certifications.--The following 
                        certifications from the chief executive officer 
                        of the State:
                                    ``(I) A certification that the 
                                State will use funds provided under the 
                                grant to promote at least 2 of the 
                                purposes described in paragraph (2).
                                    ``(II) A certification that the 
                                State will return any unused funds to 
                                the Secretary in accordance with the 
                                reconciliation process under paragraph 
                                (4).
                                    ``(III) A certification that the 
                                funds provided under the grant will be 
                                used for programs and activities that 
                                target low-income participants and that 
                                not less than 50 percent of the 
                                participants in each program or 
                                activity funded under the grant shall 
                                be--
                                            ``(aa) parents of a child 
                                        who is, or within the past 24 
                                        months has been, a recipient of 
                                        assistance or services under a 
                                        State program funded under this 
                                        part and is described in 
                                        section 454(4)(A)(i); or
                                            ``(bb) parents, including 
                                        an expectant parent or a 
                                        married parent, whose income 
                                        (after adjustment for court-
                                        ordered child support paid or 
                                        received) does not exceed 150 
                                        percent of the poverty line.
                                    ``(IV) A certification that 
                                programs or activities funded under the 
                                grant will be provided with information 
                                regarding the prevention of domestic 
                                violence and that the State 
will consult with representatives of State and local domestic violence 
centers.
                                    ``(V) A certification that funds 
                                provided to a State under this 
                                subsection shall not be used to 
                                supplement or supplant other Federal, 
                                State, or local funds that are used to 
                                support programs or activities that are 
                                related to the purposes described in 
                                paragraph (2).
                    ``(C) Preferences and factors of consideration.--In 
                awarding grants under this subsection, the Secretary 
                shall take into consideration the following:
                            ``(i) Diversity of entities used to conduct 
                        programs and activities.--The Secretary shall, 

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