Kansas officials are taking the first steps toward turning child support collections over to private contractors.
The Kansas Department for Children and Families said Friday it has begun accepting proposals to privatize the system. The agency says contractors may bid to collect support payments in one, several or all of the state's 31 judicial districts.
Department Secretary Phyllis Gilmore says contracts are scheduled to be awarded in June and will go into effect in September.
Gilmore says her department's Child Support Services division collects more than $200 million each year from noncustodial parents. She says the agency estimates that privatizing the system could increase collections by about $52 million over the first three years.