Florida House backs expanded adoption incentives


The Florida House on Wednesday unanimously passed a bill that would provide incentives for veterans and military members to adopt children from the state’s child-welfare system.

The bill (HB 61) would expand a program that provides incentives to state employees to adopt children. State employees can receive a one-time benefit of $10,000 for the adoption of a child with special needs and $5,000 for adoption of a child without special needs. The bill would make those benefits available to veterans and military members.

“Let’s work together to make Florida pro-adoption,” bill sponsor Rick Roth, R-West Palm Beach, said. “Adoption is one method of achieving permanency for children who have suffered abuse, neglect or abandonment and who are unable to be reunified with their parents.”

A similar Senate bill (SB 136), filed by Sen. Aaron Bean, R-Fernandina Beach, has received unanimous approval in two committees.

The News Service of Florida contributed to this report.