WSR 97-09-107




(Economic Services Administration)

(Public Assistance)

[Filed April 23, 1997, 11:34 a.m.]

Original Notice.

Title of Rule: WAC 388-49-310 Citizenship and alien status.

Purpose: Ensures all noncitizens food stamp program recipients meet the alien status requirements in Public Law 104-193.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 74.04.050.

Statute Being Implemented: Section 510 of Public Law 104-208 (1996).

Summary: Authorizes the department to determine alien status eligibility between April 1, 1997, and August 1, 1997, for all noncitizen food stamp program recipients.

Reasons Supporting Proposal: Section 510 of Public Law 104-208 (1996).

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting, Implementation and Enforcement: Joan Wirth, Division of Assistance Programs, (360) 413-3073.

Name of Proponent: Joan Wirth, Division of Assistance Programs, governmental.

Rule is necessary because of federal law, Section 402 of HR 3734.

Explanation of Rule, its Purpose, and Anticipated Effects: Ensures all noncitizen food stamp recipients meet the new alien status requirements in Public Law 104-193. Will impact workload in Community Services Office (CSO).

Proposal Changes the Following Existing Rules: See above.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. Does not apply to this rule.

Section 201, chapter 403, Laws of 1995, does not apply to this rule adoption. This section 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 May 27, 1997, at 10:00 a.m.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Leslie Baldwin by May 13, 1997, (360) 902-7540 or TTY (360) 902-8324.

Submit Written Comments to: Leslie Baldwin, Rules Coordinator, Rules and Policies Assistance Unit, P.O. Box 45850, Olympia, WA 98504-5850, FAX (360) 902-8292, by May 27, 1997.

Date of Intended Adoption: No sooner than May 28, 1997.

April 23, 1997

Merry A. Kogut, Manager

Rules and Policies Assistance Unit

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending WSR 97-06-074, filed 2/28/97, effective 3/31/97)

WAC 388-49-310 Citizenship and alien status. (1) The department shall require applicants to sign the application attesting to their citizenship or alien status as described under WAC 388-49-030(6).

(2) The department shall consider applicants as of January 1, 1997 and current recipients ((as of)) after April 1, 1997, but no later than August 22, 1997, who fail to meet the requirements of subsections (1) and (3) of this section as ineligible household members under WAC 388-49-190(4), 388-49-420(5), and 388-49-480(2).

(3) The department shall consider the following persons residing in the United States eligible for participation in the food stamp program:

(a) A United States citizen;

(b) An alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence under the Immigration and Nationality Act who has worked forty qualifying quarters of coverage as defined under Title II of the Social Security Act or can be credited with such qualifying quarters.

(i) An alien can be credited for each qualifying quarter worked by a:

(A) Parent while the alien was under age eighteen, or

(B) Spouse during their marriage if the alien remains married to the spouse or the spouse is deceased.

(ii) Beginning January 1, 1997, any quarter in which the alien received any federal means-tested public benefit is not counted as a qualifying quarter.

(iii) The department shall accept a statement under penalty of perjury signed by the applicant or recipient that he or she has earned or can be credited with forty qualifying quarters of coverage, until Social Security Administration (SSA) either confirms or denies the existence of such forty qualifying quarters of coverage, when:

(A) The applicant or recipient cannot provide SSA documents verifying forty qualifying quarters of coverage; and

(B) The applicant or recipient, alone or in combination with the person's spouse, or the person's parent have lived in the United States a sufficient number of years consistent with the applicant or recipient having earned or being credited with forty qualifying quarters; and

(C) The applicant or recipient provides the full name, date of birth, social security number, and sex of each person whose work history is relevant to the determination of eligibility. The applicant or recipient must sign or have each individual sign a consent form to give permission to SSA to release qualifying quarters information to the department.

(iv) If SSA cannot initially confirm forty qualifying quarters of coverage, the client will be considered ineligible unless the applicant or recipient:

(A) Presents to the department a SSA document indicating a SSA review is in process; or

(B) Presents evidence or statements satisfactory to the department of qualifying quarters for the calendar years 1996 and 1997 such that the individual will establish, in addition to SSA information, a total of forty qualifying quarters.

(v) The individual, who provides the department with a SSA document indicating a review of the individual's records is in process, can continue, if otherwise eligible, to receive benefits for six months from the date of SSA's initial response or until SSA has completed its review, whichever is earlier.

(vi) If, after recipient completes the SSA verification and review process, forty qualifying quarters of coverage have not been established, the recipient may present evidence to the department to establish forty qualifying quarters. Evidence may include a credible statement from the individual in addition to corroborating evidence, if available, to assist the department in making an independent assessment of the forty qualifying quarters requirement.

(vii) If forty qualifying quarters of coverage cannot be established, the department shall establish a claim for the overissuance.

(c) A qualified alien, as defined under section 431 of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996, and the qualified alien spouse or unmarried dependent qualified alien child of the alien, lawfully residing in the United States, who is:

(i) A veteran, as defined in section 101 of Title 38, United States Code, with a discharge characterized as an honorable discharge and not on account of alienage; or

(ii) On active duty, other than active duty for training, in the Armed Forces of the United States.

(d) An alien admitted to the United States as a refugee under section 207 of the Immigration and Nationality Act until five years after the date of such admission as a refugee;

(e) An alien granted asylum under section 208 of the Immigration and Nationality Act until five years after the date of granting such status; or

(f) An alien living in the United States whose deportation is withheld under section 243(h) of the Immigration and Nationality Act until five years after the date such deportation is withheld.

(4) The household shall provide verification when:

(a) Citizenship is questionable; or

(b) One or more of its members are aliens.

(i) The department shall not contact the immigration and naturalization service to obtain information without the alien's written consent.

(ii) The department shall give the household failing to provide verification the option of:

(A) Withdrawing the application; or

(B) Participating without the alien member.

(5) An applicant shall be ineligible until:

(a) Questionable citizenship is verified; or

(b) Lawful alien status is verified.

(6) The department shall accept a statement under a penalty of perjury signed by a United States citizen that the applicant is a United States citizen when:

(a) The applicant cannot produce acceptable citizenship verification; and

(b) The household can reasonably explain why the verification is not available.

(7) The department shall notify immigration and naturalization services when any household member is ineligible because that person is present in the United States in violation of a known deportation order of the Immigration and Nationality Act.

(8) Lawfully admitted aliens who are ineligible include:

(a) Alien visitors;

(b) Tourists;

(c) Diplomats;

(d) Students with temporary status; and

(e) Aliens not identified in subsection (3) of this section as eligible for participation in the food stamp program.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.510 and section 402 of HR 3734 (P.L. 104-193) (1996). 97-06-074, 388-49-310, filed 2/28/97, effective 3/31/97. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.050. 92-14-030 (Order 3409), 388-49-310, filed 6/23/92, effective 7/24/92; 91-11-019 (Order 3177), 388-49-310, filed 5/7/91, effective 6/1/91. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.510. 89-16-106 (Order 2836), 388-49-310, filed 8/2/89, effective 9/2/89; 89-07-001 (Order 2770), 388-49-310, filed 3/2/89. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.050. 88-16-085 (Order 2666), 388-49-310, filed 8/2/88; 88-02-031 (Order 2575), 388-49-310, filed 12/31/87.]

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