WSR 08-11-088

PROPOSED RULES

DEPARTMENT OF

SOCIAL AND HEALTH SERVICES
(Economic Services Administration)

[ Filed May 20, 2008, 8:54 a.m. ]

Original Notice.

Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 08-08-110.

Title of Rule and Other Identifying Information: The department is amending WAC 388-450-0162. The department uses countable income to determine if you are eligible and the amount of your cash and food assistance benefits.

Hearing Location(s): Blake Office Park East, Rose Room, 4500 10th Avenue S.E., Lacey, WA 98503 (one block north of the intersection of Pacific Avenue S.E. and Alhadeff Lane. A map or directions are available at http://www1.dshs.wa.gov/msa/rpau/docket.html or by calling (360) 664-6097), on June 24, 2008, at 10:00 a.m.

Date of Intended Adoption: Not earlier than June 25, 2008.

Submit Written Comments to: DSHS Rules Coordinator, P.O. Box 45850, Olympia, WA 98504, delivery 4500 10th Avenue S.E., Lacey, WA 98503, e-mail schilse@dshs.wa.gov, fax (360) 664-6185, by 5:00 p.m., on June 24, 2008.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Jennisha Johnson, DSHS rules consultant, by June 17, 2008, TTY (360) 664-6178 or (360) 664-6094 or by e-mail at johnsjl4@dshs.wa.gov.

Purpose of the Proposal and Its Anticipated Effects, Including Any Changes in Existing Rules: The current rule describes the deductions used for cash and Basic Food benefits for the purposes of determining countable income used in determining eligibility for assistance and monthly benefits. The proposed amendment emphasize[s] the deductions and incentives referred to in this rule are program-specific and clarify which deductions pertain specifically to cash assistance, and which are to be used for Basic Food.

Reasons Supporting Proposal: The proposed changes are necessary to clearly articulate that the deductions for the Washington Basic Food program are the same as allowed by the United States Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service for determining eligibility and benefit levels for the food stamp program.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057, 74.08.090.

Statute Being Implemented: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057, 74.08.090.

Rule is necessary because of federal law, 7 C.F.R. 273.9, 7 C.F.R. 273.10.

Name of Proponent: Department of social and health services, governmental.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting, Implementation, and Enforcement: John Camp, 712 Pear Street S.E., Olympia, WA 98503, (360) 725-4616.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. This proposed rule does not have an economic impact on small businesses; it places emphasis on the deductions and incentives used to determine countable income for specific department programs. An assistance unit's countable income impacts their eligibility for assistance as well as monthly benefits.

A cost-benefit analysis is not required under RCW 34.05.328. These amendments are exempt as allowed under RCW 34.05.328 (5)(b)(vii) which states in-part, "[t]his section does not apply to...rules of the department of social and health services relating only to client medical or financial eligibility and rules concerning liability for care of dependents."

May 15, 2008

Stephanie E. Schiller

Rules Coordinator

3974.2
AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 99-24-008, filed 11/19/99, effective 1/1/00)

WAC 388-450-0162   ((The department uses countable income to determine if you are eligible and the amount of your cash and food assistance benefits.)) How does the department count my income to determine if my assistance unit is eligible and calculate the amount of my cash and Basic Food benefits?   ((The department uses countable income to determine if the client is eligible and the amount of the cash and food assistance benefits.))

(1) Countable income is all income ((that remains)) your assistance unit has after we subtract the following:

(a) Excluded or disregarded income under WAC 388-450-0015;

(b) ((Deductions or)) For cash assistance, earned income incentives and deductions allowed for specific programs under WAC 388-450-0170 ((through 388-450-0200)) and 388-450-0175;

(c) For Basic Food, deductions allowed under WAC 388-450-0185; and

(d) Allocations to someone outside of the assistance unit under WAC 388-450-0095 through 388-450-0160.

(2) Countable income includes all income that ((must be deemed or allocated)) we must deem or allocate from financially responsible persons who are not members of your assistance unit under WAC 388-450-0095 through 388-450-0160.

(3) For cash assistance:

(a) We compare your countable income to the payment standard in WAC 388-478-0020 and 388-478-0030.

(b) You are not eligible for benefits when your assistance unit's countable income is equal to or greater than the payment standard plus any authorized additional requirements.

(c) Your benefit level is the payment standard and authorized additional requirements minus your assistance unit's countable income.

(4) For ((food assistance)) Basic Food:

(a) We compare your countable income to the monthly gross and net income standards ((specified in)) under WAC 388-478-0060((.

(b) You are not eligible for benefits when your assistance unit's income is equal to or greater than the monthly net income standard)):

(i) If your assistance unit is categorically eligible for Basic Food under WAC 388-414-0001, your assistance unit can have income over the gross or net income standard and still be eligible for benefits.

(ii) All other assistance units must have income at or below the gross and net income standards as required under WAC 388-478-0060 to be eligible for benefits.

(((c))) (b) Your benefit level is the maximum allotment in WAC 388-478-0060 minus thirty percent of your countable income.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.08.090 and 74.04.510. 99-24-008, 388-450-0162, filed 11/19/99, effective 1/1/00.]

Washington State Code Reviser's Office