In 2011, the Florida Legislature acknowledged the need to develop a community-based system of care for foster care and related services. "Through a competitive process", The Department of Children and Families contracts with highly qualified community-based care organizations that serve as the lead agencies for an integrated system of foster care and appropriate related services. The Department uses an Invitation to Negotiate as its method of competitive procurement. This process offers the Department more flexibility when negotiating for services than the traditional Request for Proposal method. This is important when working to develop a system of care that allows for local creativity and support.