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Blair County CYF loses license, but is still responsible for child abuse reports

Outside of the Blair County Courthouse in Hollidaysburg, PA.
Sydney Roach
The Blair County Children, Youth and Families agency is housed inside of the Blair County Courthouse in Hollidaysburg. Pennsylvania's Department of Human Services revoked Blair County's CYF license on Sunday.

Blair County’s Children, Youth and Families agency is now operating without a license. Pennsylvania’s Department of Human Services revoked it on Sunday, after the county’s fourth provisional license expired, the last one state law allows.

Blair County is appealing the decision, and is still responsible for responding to child abuse and neglect reports in the meantime.

“This procedural step is necessary to allow us to move to the next phase in improving the services we are providing to the residents of this county," said Blair County Commissioner David Kessling. "We are committed to this partnership, and we will continue our work to restore this license and show real progress on these important issues.”

The state and the county are working on a long-term plan to improve operations. The state has already provided on-site support through a state operations manager, who was appointed in December. The office has also hired additional part-time staff to work through the backlog of overdue cases.

In a comment to the Altoona Mirror, Blair County commissioners said they’re not sure what will be included in the long-term plan, since this is the first time a county’s child welfare agency has had its license revoked.

Sydney Roach is a reporter and host for WPSU with a passion for radio and community stories.