WSR 02-10-073

PREPROPOSAL STATEMENT OF INQUIRY

DEPARTMENT OF

SOCIAL AND HEALTH SERVICES
(Economic Services Administration)

[ Filed April 26, 2002, 3:47 p.m. ]

Subject of Possible Rule Making: Division of Employment and Assistance Programs will amend all necessary sections of Title 388 WAC to implement changes that affect client's eligibility and benefit level for food stamps and the state-funded food assistance program for legal immigrants (FAP). This could include changes to rules in any of the following chapters: Change of circumstances requirements in chapter 388-418 WAC; Immigrant eligibility for food assistance in chapter 388-424 WAC; Employment and Training requirements in chapter 388-444 WAC; Income and deductions for food assistance in chapter 388-450 WAC; Standards in chapter 388-478 WAC; and any other sections necessary to implement the requirements of the food stamp program or FAP.

Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.500, 74.04.510, 74.08.090, H.R. 2646 - The Farm Security Act, Title 7 of the Code of Federal Regulations - Subchapter C, Food Stamp and Food Distribution Program (7 C.F.R. 271 - 283).

Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: The department must adopt rules to be consistent with federal regulations for food stamps. The United States Congress is reauthorizing the food stamp program through the passage of the Farm Security Act of 2001. When the president signs this bill into law, the department must change rules for both the federal food stamp program and the state-funded assistance program for legal immigrants (FAP) to be consistent with new requirements and exercise state options related to the food stamp program. In addition, the department must implement the noncitizen eligibility provisions of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act as adopted by Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) in 7 C.F.R. 273.

Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: The United States Department of Agriculture, FNS publishes federal regulations for the food stamp program in the Federal Register. Rules published in the federal register are incorporated into the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations. FNS also issues administrative notices to inform states of new program requirements that are not yet in the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations. DSHS incorporates these regulations and exercises state options by adopting administrative rules for food assistance benefits in Washington state.

Process for Developing New Rule: DSHS welcomes the public to take part in developing the rules. Anyone interested should contact the staff person identified below. After the rules are drafted, DSHS will file a copy with the Office of the Code Reviser with a notice of proposed rule making. A copy of the draft will be sent to everyone on the mailing list and to anyone who requests a copy.

Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication by contacting John Camp, Program Manager, Division of Employment and Assistance Programs, Lacey Government Center, P.O. Box 45470, Olympia, WA 98504-4570, phone (360) 413-3232, fax (360) 413-3493, e-mail CAMPJX@DSHS.WA.GOV.

April 26, 2002

Brian H. Lindgren, Manager

Rules and Policies Assistance Unit

Washington State Code Reviser's Office