WSR 99-12-116

PROPOSED RULES

DEPARTMENT OF

SOCIAL AND HEALTH SERVICES
(Economic Services Administration)

[ Filed June 2, 1999, 10:26 a.m. ]

Original Notice.

Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 99-07-105.

Title of Rule: WAC 388-450-0100 Allocating income--Definitions, 388-450-0106 Allocating the income of a financially responsible person included in the assistance unit to household members excluded because of their alien status, 388-450-016 Allocating the income of a financially responsible person excluded from the assistance unit because of their alien status, 388-450-0140 Income of ineligible assistance unit members--Food assistance, 388-450-0160 Sponsored alien--Food assistance, 388-450-0185 General information about earned income disregard and income deductions for food assistance, 388-450-0190 Shelter cost income deductions for food assistance, 388-450-0200 medical cost income deductions for food assistance, and 388-478-0025 TANF payment standards for recent arrivals to Washington state.

Purpose: Changes rules to be consistent with federal laws, rules, and regulations.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 74.08.090 and 74.04.510.

Statute Being Implemented: RCW 74.08.090 and 74.04.510.

Summary: WAC 388-450-0100, clarifies language in defining disqualified assistance unit members. WAC 388-450-0106, corrected reference to WAC 388-450-0100. WAC 388-450-0116, corrected reference to WAC 388-450-0100. WAC 388-450-0140, clarified language and added reference to felons as ineligible assistance unit members. WAC 388-450-0160, defined income of a sponsor to correctly address the income of the sponsor's spouse. WAC 388-450-0185, clarified language and requirements for dependent care deduction. WAC 388-450-0190, corrected shelter deduction to reflect current standard and removed reference to actual utility cost. WAC 388-450-0200, added language to include deduction for anticipated medical expenses. WAC 388-478-0025, repealed WAC on TANF payment standards for recent arrivals to Washington state.

Reasons Supporting Proposal: Current rules do not reflect federal laws, rules, and regulations.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting, Implementation and Enforcement: John Camp, Division of Assistance Programs, P.O. Box 45480, Olympia, WA 98504-5480, (360) 413-3232.

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

Rule is not necessitated by federal law, federal or state court decision.

Explanation of Rule, its Purpose, and Anticipated Effects: Changes rules to be consistent with federal laws, rules, and regulations.

Proposal Changes the Following Existing Rules: WAC 388-450-0100 Allocating income--Definitions, 388-450-0106 Allocating the income of a financially responsible person included in the assistance unit to household members excluded because of their alien status, 388-450-0116 Allocating the income of a financially responsible person excluded from the assistance unit because of their alien status, 388-450-0140 Income of ineligible assistance unit members--Food assistance, 388-450-0160 Sponsored alien--Food assistance, 388-450-0185 General information about earned income disregard and income deductions for food assistance, 388-450-0190 Shelter cost income deductions for food assistance, and 388-450-0200 medical cost income deductions for food assistance.

Proposal Repeals the Following Rule: WAC 388-478-0025 TANF payment standards for recent arrivals to Washington state.

WAC 388-450-0100, clarifies language in defining disqualified assistance unit members. WAC 388-450-0106, corrected reference to WAC 388-450-0100. WAC 388-450-0116, corrected reference to WAC 388-450-0100. WAC 388-450-0140, clarified language and added reference to felons as ineligible assistance unit members. WAC 388-450-0160, defined income of a sponsor to correctly address the income of the sponsor's spouse. WAC 388-450-0185, clarified language and requirements for dependent care deduction. WAC 388-450-0190, corrected shelter deduction to reflect current standard and removed reference to actual utility cost. WAC 388-450-0200, added language to include deduction for anticipated medical expenses. WAC 388-478-0025, repealed WAC on TANF payment standards for recent arrivals to Washington state.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. The changes as a result of this rule do not affect small businesses.

RCW 34.05.328 does not apply to this rule adoption. This rule does not meet the definition of significant legislative rule.

Hearing Location: Lacey Government Center (behind Tokyo Bento Restaurant), 1009 College Street S.E., Room 104-B, Lacey, WA 98503, on July 6, 1999, at 10:00 a.m.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Paige Wall by June 25, 1999, phone (360) 664-6094, TTY (360) 664-6178, e-mail wallpg@dshs.wa.gov.

Submit Written Comments to: Identify WAC Numbers, Paige Wall, Rules Coordinator, Rules and Policies Assistance Unit, P.O. Box 45850, Olympia, WA 98504-5850, fax (360) 902-8292, by July 6, 1999.

Date of Intended Adoption: July 9, 1999.

May 28, 1999

Marie Myerchin-Redifer, Manager

Rules and Policies Assistance Unit

2585.2
AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 98-16-044, filed 7/31/98, effective 9/1/98)

WAC 388-450-0100
Allocating income--Definitions.

The following definitions apply to the allocation rules for TANF/SFA, RCA, and GA programs:

(1) "Dependent" means a person who:

(a) Is or could be claimed for federal income tax purposes by the financially responsible person; or

(b) The financially responsible person is legally obligated to support.

(2) "Financially responsible person” means a parent, stepparent, adoptive parent, spouse or caretaker relative.

(3) A "disqualified assistance unit member" means a person who is:

(a) An unmarried pregnant or parenting minor under age eighteen who has not completed a high school education or general education development (GED) certification and is not participating in those educational activities which would lead to the attainment of a high school diploma or GED;

(b) An unmarried pregnant or parenting minor under age eighteen who is not living in a department-approved living situation; ((and))

(c) The financially responsible person who does not report to the department within five days of the date it becomes reasonably clear that the absence of a child will exceed ninety days;

(d) A person who has been convicted in federal or state court of having made a fraudulent statement or representation about their place of residence in order to receive assistance from two or more states at the same time as defined in WAC 388-446-0010; and

(e) A person who has been convicted of unlawfully receiving public assistance as defined under WAC 388-446-0005.

(((3) "Financially responsible person" means a parent, stepparent, adoptive parent, spouse or caretaker relative.))

(4) "Ineligible assistance unit member" means an individual who is:

(a) ((Is)) Ineligible for cash assistance due to citizenship/alien status requirement in ((chapter 388-424)) WAC 388-424-0005;

(b) ((Has been disqualified from receiving assistance under WAC 388-446-0010 based on a conviction in federal or state court of having made a fraudulent statement or representation with respect to their place of residence in order to receive assistance from two or more states at the same time;

(c) Has been disqualified from receiving assistance under WAC 388-446-0005 based on a conviction for unlawfully receiving public assistance;

(d) Has been disqualified from receiving)) Ineligible to receive assistance under WAC 388-442-0010 for having been convicted after August 21, 1996, under federal or state law, of possession, use or distribution of a controlled substance;

(((e) Is disqualified from receiving)) (c) Ineligible to receive assistance under WAC 388-442-0010 for fleeing to avoid prosecution or custody or confinement after conviction for a crime or attempt to commit a crime;

(((f) Is disqualified from receiving)) (d) Ineligible to receive assistance under WAC 388-442-0010 for violating a condition of probation or parole which was imposed under a federal or state law as determined by an administrative body or court of competent jurisdiction;

(((g) Is)) (e) The spouse of a woman who receives cash benefits from the GA-S program; ((and

(h) Is)) or

(f) The adult parent of a minor parent's child.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057 and 74.08.090.  98-16-044, 388-450-0100, filed 7/31/98, effective 9/1/98.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 98-24-037, filed 11/24/98, effective 12/25/98)

WAC 388-450-0106
Allocating the income of a financially responsible person included in the assistance unit to household members excluded because of their alien status.

This section applies to TANF/SFA, RCA, RMA and TANF/SFA-related medical programs.

When a financially responsible person, as defined in WAC 388-450-0100(3), is included in the assistance unit, that person’s income is allocated to household members who are excluded from the assistance unit because of their alien status, as defined in WAC 388-450-0100 (4)(a), after allowing the following deductions:

(1) The fifty percent earned income incentive for TANF/SFA assistance units or the ninety dollar work expense deduction for RCA assistance units, if the income is earned;

(2) An amount equal to the difference between the payment standards:

(a) That would include the eligible assistance unit members and those individuals excluded from the assistance unit because of their alien status; and

(b) Only the eligible assistance unit members.

(3) The payment standard amount equal to the number of ineligible persons, as defined in WAC 388-450-0100 (4)(b) through (((h))) (f);

(4) An amount not to exceed the need standard, as defined in WAC 388-478-0015, for court or administratively ordered current or back support paid for legal dependents; and

(5) The employment related child care expenses for which the household is liable.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.005 and 74.08.090.  98-24-037, 388-450-0106, filed 11/24/98, effective 12/25/98.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 98-24-037, filed 11/24/98, effective 12/25/98)

WAC 388-450-0116
Allocating the income of a financially responsible person excluded from the assistance unit because of their alien status.

This section applies to TANF/SFA and RCA programs.

When a financially responsible person, as defined in WAC 388-450-0100(3), is excluded from the assistance unit because of their alien status, as defined in WAC 388-450-0100 (4)(a), that person’s income, after allowing the following deductions, is countable income available to the assistance unit:

(1) The fifty percent earned income incentive for TANF/SFA assistance units or the ninety dollar work expense deduction for RCA assistance units, if the income is earned;

(2) An amount equal to the difference between the payment standards:

(a) That would include the eligible assistance unit members and those individuals excluded from the assistance unit because of their alien status; and

(b) Only the eligible assistance unit members.

(3) The payment standard amount equal to the number of ineligible persons, as defined in WAC 388-450-0100 (4)(b) through (((h))) (f);

(4) An amount not to exceed the need standard, as defined in WAC 388-478-0015, for court or administratively ordered current or back support paid for legal dependents; and

(5) The employment related child care expenses for which the household is liable.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.005 and 74.08.090.  98-24-037, 388-450-0116, filed 11/24/98, effective 12/25/98.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 98-16-044, filed 7/31/98, effective 9/1/98)

WAC 388-450-0140
Income of ineligible assistance unit members--Food assistance.

(1) When a food assistance ((unit)) household contains a person who is disqualified for intentional program violation or failure to meet work requirements as provided in chapter 388-444 WAC, all income of the disqualified person is included as part of the entire ((assistance unit's)) household's income:

(a) The standard deduction and allowable deductions for earned income, medical costs, dependent care, and excess shelter costs are applied; and

(b) The ((assistance unit's coupon allotment is)) households benefits are not increased as a result of the exclusion of the disqualified person.

(2) When ((an assistance unit)) a household contains a person who is ineligible due to alien status ((or)), felon status as described in WAC 388-442-0010, failure to sign the application attesting to citizenship or alien status, or who has been disqualified for refusal to obtain or provide a Social Security number:

(a) ((A share of)) The income of the ineligible person is ((counted as income to the eligible assistance unit members after prorating the income)) prorated among all household members((, including the ineligible member, and excluding)). The ineligible person's share is excluded, and the remainder is counted as income to the eligible household members;

(b) Apply the twenty percent earned income ((deduction is applied)) disregard to the ineligible person's earned income attributed to the ((assistance unit)) household; and

(c) Divide the portion of the ((assistance unit's)) households allowable shelter ((and dependent care expense which is paid by or billed to the ineligible person is divided)) expenses evenly among all members of the ((assistance unit, provided)) household, when the ineligible members have income.

(3) The ineligible or disqualified ((assistance unit)) household member is not counted when determining the ((assistance unit's)) household's size for purposes of:

(a) Comparing the ((assistance unit's)) household's total monthly income to the income eligibility standards; and

(b) Computing benefits.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057 and 74.08.090.  98-16-044, 388-450-0140, filed 7/31/98, effective 9/1/98.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 98-16-044, filed 7/31/98, effective 9/1/98)

WAC 388-450-0160
Sponsored alien--Food assistance.

For food assistance, this section applies to aliens for whom a sponsor has signed an affidavit of support or similar statement on or after February 1, 1983:

(1) For the purpose of this rule, income of the sponsor means:

(a) Income of the sponsor; and

(b) Income of the sponsor's spouse when the spouse lives with the sponsor.

(2) Portions of the income of a sponsor ((and sponsor's spouse are)) is counted as unearned income and applied to the food assistance benefits of a sponsored alien ((if living with the sponsor)). The income of an alien's sponsor is available for three years following the alien's admission for permanent residence to the U.S.

(((2))) (3) The income of the alien's sponsor ((and sponsor's spouse)) must be verified by the client ((if the client is living with the sponsor)) at application or recertification for food assistance.

(((3))) (4) The available income is computed as follows:

(a) Total monthly earned and unearned income of the sponsor ((and sponsor's spouse)):

(i) Minus twenty percent of the gross earned income; and

(ii) Minus the amount of the gross income eligibility standard for a household size equal to the sponsor, the sponsor's spouse, and all dependents.

(b) Plus any actual money paid to the alien by the sponsor or sponsor's spouse in excess of the amount computed in subsection (((3))) (4)(a) of this section is treated as unearned income.

(((4))) (5) The net income in subsection (((3))) (4) of this section is available to a sponsored alien who:

(a) Applies for and receives food assistance; or

(b) Is recertified for food assistance.

(((5))) (6) If the sponsored alien can show the sponsor is also sponsoring other aliens, the available income is divided by the number of sponsored aliens applying for, or receiving food assistance.

(((6))) (7) If an alien changes sponsors during the certification period, available income is reviewed based on the required information about the new sponsor as soon as possible after the information is supplied and verified by the client.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057 and 74.08.090.  98-16-044, 388-450-0160, filed 7/31/98, effective 9/1/98.]

2586.2
AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 98-16-044, filed 7/31/98, effective 9/1/98)

WAC 388-450-0185
General information ((regarding)) about earned income disregard and income deductions for food assistance programs.

The following ((income deductions are used)) amounts are deducted from a household's income to compute food assistance program benefits:

(1) ((A standard deduction of)) One hundred thirty-four dollars per household per month (standard deduction);

(2) ((An earned income deduction of)) Twenty percent of the households's gross earned income (earned income disregard);

(3) ((A portion of the actual)) The amount of the household's incurred or expected monthly ((amount of)) dependent care ((deduction)) expense:

(a) The care must be needed for an assistance unit member to seek, accept or continue employment; or

(b) The care must be needed for an assistance unit member to attend training or education ((preparatory)) in preparation for to employment; ((and))

(c) ((Not to exceed)) The expense must be payable to someone outside of the household; and

(d) The deduction cannot exceed:

(i) Two hundred dollars for each dependent ((one year of age or younger)) under two years of age; or

(((d) Not to exceed)) (ii) One hundred seventy-five dollars for each ((other)) dependent age two or older.

(4) ((A deduction for)) Nonreimbursable monthly medical expenses over thirty-five dollars incurred or ((anticipated)) expected to be incurred by an elderly or disabled household member as specified under WAC 388-450-0200.

(5) ((A deduction for)) Legally obligated child support paid for a person who is not a member of the household.

(6) Shelter costs as provided in WAC 388-450-0190.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057 and 74.08.090.  98-16-044, 388-450-0185, filed 7/31/98, effective 9/1/98.]

Reviser's note: The typographical error in the above section occurred in the copy filed by the agency and appears in the Register pursuant to the requirements of RCW 34.08.040.
AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 98-16-044, filed 7/31/98, effective 9/1/98)

WAC 388-450-0190
Shelter cost income deductions for food assistance.

(1) Shelter costs include:

(a) Rent, lease payments and mortgage payments; and

(b) Utility costs.

(2) Shelter costs are deducted from gross income if the costs are in excess of fifty percent of the assistance unit's income after deducting the standard, earned income, medical, child support, and dependent care deductions:

(a) For an assistance unit containing an elderly or disabled member the entire amount of excess shelter costs is deducted;

(b) For all other assistance units the excess shelter cost deduction cannot exceed two hundred ((and fifty)) seventy-five dollars.

(3) Shelter costs may include:

(a) Costs for a home not occupied because of employment, training away from the home, illness, or abandonment caused by casualty loss or natural disaster if the:

(i) Assistance unit intends to return to the home;

(ii) Current occupants, if any, are not claiming shelter costs for food assistance purposes; and

(iii) The home is not being leased or rented during the assistance unit's absence.

(b) Charges for the repair of the home which was substantially damaged or destroyed due to a natural disaster.

(c) The standard utility allowance ((or actual utility costs)) as provided in WAC 388-450-0195.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057 and 74.08.090.  98-16-044, 388-450-0190, filed 7/31/98, effective 9/1/98.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 98-16-044, filed 7/31/98, effective 9/1/98)

WAC 388-450-0200
Medical cost income deductions for food assistance.

(1) Excess medical and/or shelter deductions ((paid)) incurred by the client are allowed when a client:

(a) Is elderly or disabled;

(b) Received food assistance as a noncash assistance unit until becoming categorically eligible due to the receipt of SSI; or

(c) ((Became)) Becomes categorically eligible due to the receipt of SSI after noncash assistance food stamps were denied as provided under ((chapter 388-414)) WAC 388-414-0001.

(2) One-time medical expenses are averaged over the certification period((,)) or taken as a deduction at one time at the client's option.

(3) Anticipated medical expenses are averaged over the certification period.

(4) A medical expense deduction is not allowed when the expense is:

(a) A reimbursement;

(b) A vendor payment, except for Low Income Home Energy Assistance Act (LIHEAA) payments;

(c) Claimed after the initial billing, even though:

(i) Not reported when first due;

(ii) Included in the most recent billing; and

(iii) Actually paid.

(d) Allowed as a deduction once but not paid, and subsequently included in a repayment agreement;

(e) Included in a timely but defaulted repayment agreement and then included in a subsequent repayment agreement;

(f) Claimed by a client after presumptive SSI is denied;

(g) Considered overdue to the provider; or

(h) Already paid by a prospectively budgeted assistance unit.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057 and 74.08.090.  98-16-044, 388-450-0200, filed 7/31/98, effective 9/1/98.]


REPEALER

     The following section of the Washington Administrative Code is repealed:
WAC 388-478-0025TANF payment standards for recent arrivals to Washington state.

Washington State Code Reviser's Office