WSR 02-15-148

PERMANENT RULES

DEPARTMENT OF

SOCIAL AND HEALTH SERVICES
(Economic Services Administration)

[ Filed July 22, 2002, 4:01 p.m. , effective September 1, 2002 ]

Date of Adoption: July 18, 2002.

Purpose: The division of employment and assistance programs is adopting these amendments to clarify and explain WASHCAP (Washington combined application program) and its eligibility rules. The amended WAC will comply with the original federal food and nutrition service waiver that makes any client eligible if they are also eligible for federal SSI (supplemental security income).

Citation of Existing Rules Affected by this Order: Amending WAC 388-492-0010, 388-492-0020, 388-492-0030, 388-492-0040, 388-492-0050, 388-492-0060, 388-492-0070, 388-492-0080, 388-492-0090, 388-492-0100, 388-492-0110, 388-492-0120, and 388-492-0130.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 74.04.57 [74.04.057], 74.04.500, 74.04.510.

Adopted under notice filed as WSR 02-12-071 on May 31, 2002.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 0, Amended 13, Repealed 0; or Recently Enacted State Statutes: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted at Request of a Nongovernmental Entity: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted on the Agency's Own Initiative: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Clarify, Streamline, or Reform Agency Procedures: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted Using Negotiated Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Pilot Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Other Alternative Rule Making: New 0, Amended 13, Repealed 0.
Effective Date of Rule: September 1, 2002.

July 18, 2002

Brian H. Lindgren, Manager

Rules and Policies Assistance Unit

3094.3
AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 01-21-058, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01)

WAC 388-492-0010   Washington state combined application ((project)) program (WASHCAP) definitions.   "Assistance unit" (AU) -- For this chapter, a person who ((gets)):

(1) Is eligible to receive federal SSI,

(2) Is eighteen years old or older,

(3) Is not in an institution,

(4) Meets the definition of living arrangement "A((,))" (Social Security considers you as a separate household),

(5) Has no earned income, and

(6) States that they buy and cook food on their own.

"Centralized unit" -- The unit that handles all WASHCAP cases for the state except for cases that get services from a home and community service office (HCS). The centralized unit or HCS office processes new applications for WASHCAP benefits and handles current WASHCAP cases.

(("Pure SSI household" -- Every member of the assistance unit is eligible for SSI on their own behalf.))

"SSA" -- Social Security Administration. A federal agency that issues all SSA and SSI cash benefits.

"SSA benefits" -- A federal program that gives money to aged, blind or disabled clients based on their past wages.

"SDX" -- State data exchange. The computer system for exchanging information between SSA and DSHS regarding SSI applicants, beneficiaries and terminated SSI beneficiaries.

"SSI benefits" -- Supplemental Security Income. The SSA federal cash grant program for needy aged, blind or disabled clients who did not have enough wages in the past to qualify for SSA benefits.

"WASHCAP" -- Washington state combined application ((project)) program. A simplified food assistance program that automatically opens food assistance benefits for certain SSI clients.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.057, 74.04.500, 74.04.510. 01-21-058, 388-492-0010, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 01-21-058, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01)

WAC 388-492-0020   What is WASHCAP?   WASHCAP stands for the Washington state combined application ((project)) program. WASHCAP is a simplified food assistance program for clients that ((get)) are eligible for SSI from SSA and meet some other basic requirements:

(1) If you live in Washington state and get SSI, SSA asks you if you want to get food assistance benefits. If you meet the requirements of WAC 388-492-0030, you will get your food assistance benefits through WASHCAP.

(2) If you are eligible for WASHCAP, SSA electronically sends us the information we need to open your benefits. You do not have to go to your local community services office to apply for food assistance benefits.

(3) ((If you want food assistance benefits right away, you must apply for regular food assistance benefits at your local community services office.

(4))) While you get WASHCAP benefits, you must report all changes to SSA. SSA automatically shares your information ((with us)) we need for your WASHCAP benefits. You can report changes to your WASHCAP worker, but you do not have to do so. See WAC 388-492-0080 regarding changes to shelter costs.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.057, 74.04.500, 74.04.510. 01-21-058, 388-492-0020, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 01-21-058, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01)

WAC 388-492-0030   Who can get WASHCAP?   (1) When you apply for food assistance, you can get WASHCAP benefits when you are eighteen years of age or older and:

(a) ((Get at least one dollar)) Are eligible to receive federal SSI benefits(( from SSA. We do not consider the state supplement as federal SSI benefits));

(b) Live alone or SSA considers you as a single household;

(c) Buy and cook your food separately from others you live with;

(d) Do not have any earned income((; and

(e) If you live in an institution, SSA expects you to be there for less than ninety days)).

(2) You are not eligible for WASHCAP if:

(a) You live in an institution(( for ninety days or longer;

(b) SSA expects you to live in an institution for ninety days or longer;

(c) SSA tells us you have earned income for more than three months in a row)); or

(((d))) (b) You are under age twenty-two and you live in the same home as your parents.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.057, 74.04.500, 74.04.510. 01-21-058, 388-492-0030, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 01-21-058, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01)

WAC 388-492-0040   Can I choose whether I get WASHCAP or regular food assistance?   You can choose to have regular food assistance benefits instead of WASHCAP benefits when:

(1) Your shelter costs are more than four hundred eighty dollars a month. We count the following items as a shelter cost:

(a) Rent or mortgage;

(b) Property taxes;

(c) Homeowner's insurance (for the building only); ((and)) or

(d) Mandatory homeowner's association or condo fees.

(2) Your out-of pocket medical expenses are more than thirty-five dollars a month; ((or))

(3) You would get more benefits from being in the regular food assistance program; or

(4) You are waiting to receive WASHCAP benefits.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.057, 74.04.500, 74.04.510. 01-21-058, 388-492-0040, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 01-21-058, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01)

WAC 388-492-0050   How do I apply for Washington state combined application program (WASHCAP) benefits?   (1) You apply for WASHCAP at Social Security Administration (SSA) when you apply for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). If you want food assistance, your SSA worker will ask you ((to complete a one-page application)) questions for WASHCAP eligibility when you have your SSI interview.

(2) If you are eligible for WASHCAP benefits, your benefits will start the first of the month after the month you start getting on-going SSI benefits.

(3) If you need food assistance in five days or less, you must apply for expedited service at ((the)):

(a) Your local community services office (CSO) ((or));

(b) Your local home and community services office (HCS ((office))) if you get long-term care services; or

(c) The SSA district office if you give them an application for expedited services when you apply for SSI. SSA ((may also take your application)) forwards the food assistance application to the local CSO to process.

(4) If you want food assistance before you get SSI, you must apply for regular food assistance at:

(a) SSA if you give them an application for food assistance when you apply for SSI;

(b) Your local ((community services office ())CSO(())); or

(c) Your local ((home and community services ())HCS(())) office if you get long-term care services.

(5) If you get regular food assistance((, you will still get)) these benefits will continue:

(a) Through the end of your certification period; or

(b) ((Until you are approved for)) Through the month before your WASHCAP benefits start.

(6) If your regular food assistance ends before you are eligible for WASHCAP, you must reapply for these benefits to continue.

(7) If you get regular food assistance and you become eligible for WASHCAP, we will automatically change your benefits to WASHCAP.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.057, 74.04.500, 74.04.510. 01-21-058, 388-492-0050, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 01-21-058, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01)

WAC 388-492-0060   How do I get my Washington state combined application program (WASHCAP) benefits?   (1) If you are eligible for WASHCAP, you will get your food assistance benefits through electronic benefits transfer (EBT).

(2) The department issues your EBT food assistance benefits according to WAC 388-412-0025.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.057, 74.04.500, 74.04.510. 01-21-058, 388-492-0060, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 01-21-058, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01)

WAC 388-492-0070   How are my Washington state combined application program (WASHCAP) benefits calculated?   We calculate your WASHCAP benefits as follows:

(1) We begin with your gross income. (Social Security Administration (SSA) tells us how much income you have.)

(2) We subtract ((a standard deduction of)) one hundred thirty-four dollars from your gross income to get your countable income.

(3) We figure your shelter cost as follows:

(a) If ((Social Security)) SSA tells us you pay two hundred ninety dollars or more a month for shelter, we use three hundred dollars as your shelter cost; or

(b) If ((Social Security)) SSA tells us you pay ((less than)) two hundred ((ninety)) eighty-nine dollars a month or less for shelter, we use one hundred forty-four dollars as your shelter cost; and

(c) We add the current standard utility allowance under WAC 388-450-0195 to determine your total shelter cost.

(4) We figure your shelter deduction by subtracting one half of your countable income from your shelter cost.

(5) We figure your net ((WASHCAP)) income by subtracting your shelter deduction from your countable income.

(6) We figure your WASHCAP benefits (allotment) by:

(a) Multiplying your net ((WASHCAP)) income by thirty percent and rounding up to the next whole dollar; and

(b) Subtracting the result from the maximum allotment under WAC 388-478-0060.

(c) If you are eligible for WASHCAP, your assistance unit will get at least ten dollars food benefits each month.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.057, 74.04.500, 74.04.510. 01-21-058, 388-492-0070, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 01-21-058, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01)

WAC 388-492-0080   Where do I report changes?   (1) You report all changes to Social Security Administration (SSA) according to their reporting requirements. Social Security reports these changes to your department of social and health services (DSHS) worker. SSA will not accept or report shelter costs changes until SSA does its redetermination.

(2) You do not have to report any changes to DSHS.

(3) You can choose to report the following changes to your Washington combined application project (WASHCAP) worker to see if you will get more food assistance benefits.

(a) A change in your address;

(b) An increase in your shelter costs; or

(c) An increase in your out-of-pocket medical expenses.

(4) If changes are reported to DSHS, proof will be required.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.057, 74.04.500, 74.04.510. 01-21-058, 388-492-0080, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 01-21-058, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01)

WAC 388-492-0090   How often does my Washington state combined application program (WASHCAP) case need to be reviewed?   (1) Your ((certification period is the amount of time your AU is eligible)) eligibility for WASHCAP benefits ((. We certify WASHCAP for up to)) must be reviewed at least every twenty-four months.

(2) Your certification period is the amount of time your assistance unit is eligible for WASHCAP benefits.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.057, 74.04.500, 74.04.510. 01-21-058, 388-492-0090, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 01-21-058, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01)

WAC 388-492-0100   How is my eligibility for Washington state combined application program (WASHCAP) reviewed?   (1) If Social Security Administration (SSA) reviews your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) eligibility, they will also complete your review for WASHCAP benefits. SSA sends us this information electronically.

(2) If SSA does not review your SSI eligibility, we will mail you a one-page application two months before your WASHCAP benefits end. You must complete and return this application to the WASHCAP unit or your local home and community services office (HCS ((office))).

(3) We do WASHCAP reviews by mail. If you bring your WASHCAP application to the local office, we will process the application as follows:

(a) If you get long-term care services, your local HCS office will process your application; or

(b) If you do not get long-term care services, the local office will forward your application to the WASHCAP central unit.

(4) If we get your completed one-page application after your WASHCAP benefits end, we will reopen your benefits back to the first of the month if:

(a) We get your application form within thirty days from the end of your certification period; and

(b) You are still eligible for WASHCAP.

(5) If your application is not complete, we will return it to you to complete.

(6) If you are no longer eligible for WASHCAP benefits, we will decide if you are eligible for regular food assistance. We may ask you to give us more information or verification if we cannot make a decision with the information we have.

(((6))) (7) If we get your completed one-page application form more than thirty days after your benefits end, ((we will open)) your WASHCAP benefits open the first of the next month after you turn in your application and SSA shows you are eligible for WASHCAP in their system.

(((7))) (8) If you want regular food assistance while you are waiting for WASHCAP benefits, you must apply for these benefits at the local CSO or HCS office.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.057, 74.04.500, 74.04.510. 01-21-058, 388-492-0100, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 01-21-058, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01)

WAC 388-492-0110   What happens if my Washington state combined application program (WASHCAP) benefits end?   (1) If your WASHCAP benefits end because you did not have the review required under WAC 388-492-0100, you must finish the required review or apply for food assistance ((benefits)) at your local community services office (CSO) or home and community services (HCS) office.

(2) If your WASHCAP benefits end because you are disqualified for food assistance under WAC 388-400-0040, you are not eligible for regular food assistance. If you get medical assistance, we will send your medical assistance case to your local office. If you are a HCS client, your medical case will remain at HCS.

(3) If your WASHCAP benefits end because SSA stopped your SSI benefits:

(a) We will send you an application for regular food assistance and information about what you must verify in order to get benefits and tell you where to take your application to find out if you are eligible for benefits. If you are an HCS client, your case will remain at your HCS office.

(b) You will still receive the same medical benefits until we decide what medical programs you are eligible for under WAC 388-418-0025.

(((c) When we get your completed application, we will interview you over the phone. If we need more information to decide if you are eligible, we will tell you what we need.

(d) After we decide if you are eligible for regular food assistance, we will send your case to the local office.))

(4) If your WASHCAP benefits end for any other reason:

(a) We will send you an application for regular food assistance along with:

(i) The address of your local office; and

(ii) Information about what you must verify in order to get benefits.

(b) If you get medical assistance, we will send your medical assistance case to the local office unless you are a HCS client;

(c) For the office to decide if you are eligible for food assistance, you must:

(i) Finish the application process for food assistance under chapter 388-406 WAC; and

(ii) Have an interview for food assistance under WAC 388-452-0005.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.057, 74.04.500, 74.04.510. 01-21-058, 388-492-0110, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 01-21-058, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01)

WAC 388-492-0120   What happens to my Washington state combined application program (WASHCAP) benefits if I am disqualified?   (1) If you are disqualified from receiving SSI for any reason, you will not be able to get WASHCAP food benefits. See WAC 388-492-0030, Who can get WASHCAP?

(2) If you are disqualified from receiving food assistance for any reason, you will not get WASHCAP food benefits. ((See)) This includes clients who:

(a) Are ineligible for food assistance under WAC 388-400-0040(9) ((for persons disqualified)); or

(b) Did not cooperate with quality assurance as required under WAC 388-465-001.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.057, 74.04.500, 74.04.510. 01-21-058, 388-492-0120, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 01-21-058, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01)

WAC 388-492-0130   What can I do if I disagree with a decision the department made about my Washington state combined application program (WASHCAP) benefits?   (1) If you disagree with a decision about your benefits, you may ask for a fair hearing.

(2) You can ask for a hearing by contacting the central unit, home community service office or any responsible department or office of administrative hearings employee.

(3) See chapter 388-08 WAC for information on the fair hearing process.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.057, 74.04.500, 74.04.510. 01-21-058, 388-492-0130, filed 10/16/01, effective 12/1/01.]

Washington State Code Reviser's Office