WSR 97-10-035

PROPOSED RULES

DEPARTMENT OF

SOCIAL AND HEALTH SERVICES

(Economic Services Administration)

(Public Assistance)

[Filed April 30, 1997, 4:27 p.m.]

Original Notice.

Title of Rule: WAC 388-250-1700.

Purpose: Pass along the 2.9 percent federal cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) for the supplemental security income (SSI) program and move from the "total expenditure method" of computing the SSI state supplement payment to the "payment levels method."

Other Identifying Information: This rule has been in effect since January 1, 1997, under emergency WACs.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 74.08.090.

Statute Being Implemented: RCW 74.04.630, Social Security Act COLA increases.

Summary: This revision codifies the January 1997 federal COLA, notes the entire amount is passed along to eligible SSI beneficiaries, indicates the SSI state supplement amount has also changed due to a change in the method of computing the amount of the supplement.

Reasons Supporting Proposal: The change in method of computing the amount of the SSI state supplement payment was approved by Governor Lowry and passing along the federal COLA is required under the chosen payment method.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting, Implementation and Enforcement: Barbara Hargrave, Lacey Government Center, P.O. Box 45470, Lacey, WA 98504-5470, (360) 413-3104.

Name of Proponent: Department of Social and Health Services, governmental.

Rule is necessary because of federal law, Social Security Act COLA changes FR61 page 55346-51.

Explanation of Rule, its Purpose, and Anticipated Effects: This rule indicates the federal benefit level (FBL) for SSI benefits to eligible individuals and couples, which varies by living arrangement and location of the household in the state. The FBL is added to the state supplemental payment amount to create the combined federal/state SSI standard for Washington. The revision to this rule updates federal and state standards as of January 1, 1997, and has been in place by emergency WAC since that date.

Proposal Changes the Following Existing Rules: Federal benefit level and state supplement payment level updated to reflect January 1, 1997, standards.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. This rule has no impact on small business as it just affects the benefit amount for SSI recipients.

Section 201, chapter 403, Laws of 1995, does not apply to this rule adoption. This section (RCW 34.05.328) does not apply to the Department of Social and Health Services.

Hearing Location: Lacey Government Center (behind Tokyo Bento restaurant), 1009 College Street S.E., Room 104-A, Lacey, WA 98503, on June 10, 1997, at 10:00 a.m.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Leslie Baldwin, Rules Coordinator, by May 30, 1997.

Submit Written Comments to and Identify WAC Numbers: Leslie Baldwin, Rules Coordinator, Rules and Policies Assistance Unit, P.O. Box 45850, Olympia, WA 98504-5850, FAX (360) 902-8292, by June 10, 1997.

Date of Intended Adoption: No sooner than June 11, 1997.

April 30, 1997

Merry A. Kogut, Manager

Rules and Policies Assistance Unit

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending Order 3972, filed 4/26/96, effective 5/27/96 WAC 388-250-1700 Standards of assistance--Supplemental security income. Effective January 1, ((1996)) 1997, the standards of SSI assistance paid to an eligible individual and couple are:

(1) Living alone (own household or alternate care, except nursing homes or medical institutions).

Federal

SSI State

Standard Benefit Supplement

Area I: King, Pierce, Snohomish, Thurston, and Kitsap Counties

Individual (($495.42 $470.00 $ 25.42))

$512.00 $484.00 $ 28.00

Individual with one essential person ((724.98 705.00 19.98))

748.00 726.00 22.00

Couple:

Both eligible ((724.98 705.00 19.98))

748.00 726.00 22.00

Includes one essential person ((724.98 705.00 19.98))

748.00 726.00 22.00

Includes ineligible spouse ((622.73 470.00 152.73))

652.20 484.00 168.20



Area II: All Counties Other Than the Above

Individual (($476.86 470.00 6.86))

$491.55 484.00 7.55

Individual with one essential person ((705.00 705.00)) 0

726.00 726.00

Couple:

Both eligible ((705.00 705.00)) 0

726.00 726.00

Includes one essential person ((705.00 705.00)) 0

726.00 726.00

Includes ineligible spouse ((595.53 470.00 125.53))

622.25 484.00 138.25



Areas I and II:

Eligible individual with more than one essential person: $((470.00)) 484.00 for eligible individual plus $((235.00)) 242.00 for each essential person (no state supplement).

Eligible couple with one or more essential persons: $((705.00)) 726.00 for eligible couple plus $((235.00)) 242.00 for each essential person (no state supplement).

(2) Shared living (Supplied shelter): Area I and II

Federal

SSI State

Standard Benefit Supplement

Individual (($318.62 $313.34 $ 5.28))

$328.48 $322.67 $ 5.81

Individual with one essential person ((475.72 470.00 5.72))

490.30 484.00 6.30

Couple:

Both eligible ((475.72 470.00 5.72))

490.30 484.00 6.30

Includes one essential person ((475.72 470.00 5.72))

490.30 484.00 6.30

Includes ineligible spouse ((407.55 313.34 94.21))

426.43 322.67 103.76

Area I and II:

Eligible individual with more than one essential person: $((313.34)) 322.67 for eligible individual plus $((156.66)) 161.33 for each essential person (no state supplement).

Eligible couple with one or more essential persons: $((470.00)) 484.00 for eligible couple plus $((156.66)) 161.33 for each essential person (no state supplement).

(3) Residing in a medical institution: Area I and II

Federal

SSI State

Standard Benefit Supplement

No change $41.62 $30.00 $11.62

(4) Mandatory income level (MIL) for grandfathered claimant. Increased by ((two)) three dollars and ((nineteen)) seventy-eight cents for all MIL clients, except for those converted in a "D" living arrangement (residing in a medical institution at the time of conversion).

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.08.090 and Legislative decision in the 1995 Budget Bill. 96-10-044 (Order 3972), 388-250-1700, filed 4/26/96, effective 5/27/96; 95-20-028 (Order 3903), 388-250-1700, filed 9/27/95, effective 10/28/95. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.050 and 45 CFR 233.20 (a)(2)(vi). 95-03-046 (Order 3822), 388-250-1700, filed 1/11/95, effective 2/11/95. Statutory Authority: 1994 sp.s. c 6. 94-15-003 (Order 3750), 388-250-1700, filed 7/7/94, effective 8/7/94. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.08.090. 94-09-001 (Order 3729), 388-250-1700, filed 4/6/94, effective 5/7/94.]

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