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Carroll to challenge adoption 'czar'

By Deborah Yetter The Courier-Journal

LOUISVILLE -- A no-bid, $240,000-a-year state contract awarded to a Baptist pastor and professor to reform Kentucky's child adoption and foster care system is being challenged by State Sen. Julian Carroll, who said he will urge fellow lawmakers to reject it.

Carroll, a 21-year member of the General Assembly who is a native of McCracken County and a former governor and lieutenant governor, said that Daniel Dumas, a vice president at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, is not qualified to be Gov. Matt Bevin's adoption "czar."

"He has absolutely zero experience in these areas," said Carroll, a Frankfort Democrat who plans to aggressively question the administration about the contract when it comes before the legislative Government Contract Review Committee in June.

Neither the Bevin administration nor Dumas responded to requests for comment.

Carroll said he's concerned that the salary is "exorbitant" for the job and that the Bevin administration didn't seek other proposals before awarding the contract to Dumas.

"Our committee is always concerned about sole source contracts because it enables someone to make a political decision," Carroll said.

The contract, renewable for up to two years, is nearly $100,000 more than the governor's annual salary of $142,970 and allows for annual bonuses of up to 20 percent to be awarded by Bevin. A brief statement filed by the Cabinet for Health and Family Services described the contract as "not practical to bid," which allowed it to award it to Dumas without seeking other proposals.

Comments made about this article - 1 Total

Deborah Smith posted on: Thursday, May 11, 2017 6:46 AM

Title: Carroll's Correct

When I read an article that there was going to be someone who would be in charge of reforming our foster care and adoption system, I thought I hope they appoint someone who understands the in and outs of adoption and the "red tape" our federal and state government has put on that system. I knew there were are of professional people who had dealt with adoption as a career who would fit the need of that position. Adoption is a triangle which involves the child, birth parent and adoptive parent. I was hoping to see someone chosen who knew the workings of all three in that triangle.
I am sure Mr. Dumus is a find man, but we do not need a person who is experience in strategic consulting, leadership coaching, and serving in the United States Navy or a published author and professor of Christian ministry and leadership. We are dealing with human lives, children and families who have issues, situtations where everything has a little gray area.
In order to do anything with the broken system of the Commonwealth's children and families who have problems, we must first be willing to not throw alittle fit because some agency did not feel we were appropriate for adopting at that time. Because of our Govenor's little hissy fit, he chose to adopt out of country when there were children who
resided in our Commonwealth. The only reason Bevin's gives for being denied is that he had too many children. I guarentee you there was more to it than that. Kentucky's foster and adoptive system, which he is so dead set against, only has children that are special needs. That means children are from abused, neglected, drug and mental health issue families. They do not have any of the little babies or small children with no problems! (He adopted children that were between the ages of 2-10). The govenor also needs to put his money where his mouth is and fund the agency that provides the services to the foster and adoptive children of our Commonwealth!
The other major factor in this little story of trying to do something with a "Broken Foster Care/Adopt System" is that state and federal laws will have to be changed. A person who works for that system can only do what they are allowed by law to do.
I'm sorry we have so many children in foster care, I however, know that a man who has adopted two children is not equipped to lead this reform. I also know that the salary this man is receiving could have benefitted many children in our Commonwealth.
Until the Commonwealth of Kentucky's leaders decided our families and our serving professionals are worth more than money, buildings, political asperations and they are not treated like the proverble step-child, the services our families and children receive will always be in trouble. The people who make the laws within our state and who have been elected to serve our citizens are the ones that need to be reformed.
I'd like to also know who made within the Cabinet such a statement, "A brief statement filed by the Cabinet for Health and Family Services described the contract as "not practical to bid," which allowed it to award it to Dumas without seeking other proposals.".

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