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Tapp: Adoption bill's chances 'slim'

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By Walt Reichert

 Senate Bill 68, a measure that would prohibit unmarried couples from becoming adoptive or foster parents, is running out of time to make it through this session of the legislature, said the bill's sponsor, state Sen. Gary Tapp.

“The chances of it going anywhere in the House are slim,” Tapp said. “It's just a little late in the session.”

Tapp said the bill would have strong support in both houses of the legislature if it could make it to the floor for a vote in both chambers.

“It would win 90 to 10 in the House if it came to a vote,” Tapp said.

Tapp said the bill may get a hearing on the Senate floor Tuesday. The legislation made it out of the Senate Judiciary committee last week, though opponents complained they were not made aware the bill would come up for a vote.

Tapp's bill would prohibit unmarried sexual partners from serving as foster or adoptive parents. It is backed by The Family Foundation, but has drawn fire from gay rights groups and some advocates for children in the foster/adoption programs.

The Fairness Campaign and Kentucky Fairness Alliance issued a press release attacking the bill's passage through the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Foster Care Alumni of America released yesterday a press release calling for the rejection of Tapp's bill.

The release cited the state's inability to place about a third of the children in state care in foster homes, relying on institutional care instead.

“Until Kentucky has reached the point at which there are more qualified families fostering and adopting than there are children who need homes, the state should not limit the qualified pool of parents even further,” the release said.

If it passes the Senate, Tapp's bill would have to make it out of the House Judiciary Committee and to the House floor for a vote. This session of the General Assembly is scheduled to conclude on Friday.