WSR 06-13-089

PROPOSED RULES

DEPARTMENT OF

SOCIAL AND HEALTH SERVICES
(Economic Services Administration)

[ Filed June 20, 2006, 1:06 p.m. ]

Original Notice.

Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 06-10-044.

Title of Rule and Other Identifying Information: WAC 388-450-0045 How do we count income from employment and training programs?

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 July 25, 2006, at 10:00 a.m.

Date of Intended Adoption: No earlier than July 26, 2006.

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 fernaax@dshs.wa.gov, fax (360) 664-6185, by 5:00 p.m., July 25, 2006.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Stephanie Schiller, DSHS Rules Consultant, by July 21, 2006, TTY (360) 664-6178 or (360) 664-6097 or by e-mail at schilse@dshs.wa.gov.

Purpose of the Proposal and Its Anticipated Effects, Including Any Changes in Existing Rules: To update treatment of income from the VISTA income to meet federal requirements for the food stamp program and comply with RCW 74.04.510.

Reasons Supporting Proposal: The United States Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service has issued guidance that the department must count payments/stipends from programs under the Domestic Volunteer Services Act of 1973, Titles I and II, as amended.

Payments under these titles including VISTA and Americorps VISTA must be counted as earned income if the VISTA participant did not receive food stamp benefits at the time they entered the service program. We exclude payments under these titles as income if the person already received Washington Basic Food program benefits at the time they join the service program.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057, 74.04.510, 74.08.090.

Statute Being Implemented: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057, 74.04.510, 74.08.090.

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

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

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting, Implementation and Enforcement: John Camp, 1009 College S.E., Lacey, WA 98504, (360) 725-4616.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. These proposed rules do not have an economic impact on small businesses. The proposed amendments only affect DSHS clients by establishing eligibility rules incorporating federal requirements for how VISTA income is treated for the food stamp program administered as the Washington Basic Food program. The rule impacts whether or [not] VISTA income is used to determine a person's eligibility for Basic Food 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." These rules incorporate federal requirements for how the department counts VISTA income for the Washington Basic Food program consistent with Title 74 RCW and Title 7 C.F.R. Part 273.

June 20, 2006

Andy Fernando, Manager

Rules and Policies Assistance Unit

3774.1
AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 03-03-071, filed 1/15/03, effective 3/1/03)

WAC 388-450-0045   How do we count income from employment and training programs?   This section applies to cash assistance, Basic Food, and medical programs for families, children, and pregnant women.

(1) We treat payments issued under the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) as follows:

(a) For cash assistance and medical programs for families, children, and pregnant women, we exclude all payments.

(b) For Basic Food:

(i) We exclude OJT earnings for children who are eighteen years of age or younger and under parental control as described in WAC 388-408-0035.

(ii) We count OJT earnings as earned income for people who are:

(A) Age nineteen and older; or

(B) Age eighteen or younger and not under parental control.

(iii) We exclude all other payments.

(2) We exclude all payments issued under the National and Community Service Trust Act of 1993. This includes payments made through the AmeriCorps ((and AmeriCorps VISTA)) program((s)).

(3) We treat payments issued under Title I of the Domestic Volunteer Act of 1973, such as VISTA, AmeriCorps Vista, university year for action, and urban crime prevention program as follows:

(a) For cash assistance and medical programs for families, children, and pregnant women, we exclude all payments.

(b) For Basic Food, we count most payments as earned income. We exclude the payments if you ((got)):

(i) Received Basic Food or cash assistance at the time you joined the Title I program; or

(ii) ((You)) Were participating in the Title I program and ((got)) received an income disregard at the time of conversion to the Food Stamp Act of 1977. We ((will)) continue to exclude the payments ((you get)) even if you do not get Basic Food every month.

(4) We exclude all payments issued under Title II of the Domestic Volunteer Act of 1973. These include:

(a) Retired senior volunteer program (RSVP);

(b) Foster grandparents program; and

(c) Senior companion program.

(5) We count training allowances from vocational and rehabilitative programs as earned income when:

(a) The program is recognized by federal, state, or local governments; and

(b) The allowance is not a reimbursement.

(6) When GAU clients receive training allowances we allow:

(a) The earned income incentive and work expense deduction specified under WAC 388-450-0175, when applicable; and

(b) The actual cost of uniforms or special clothing required for the course as a deduction, if enrolled in a remedial education or vocational training course.

(7) We exclude support service payments received by or made on behalf of WorkFirst participants.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057, 74.04.510. 03-03-071, 388-450-0045, filed 1/15/03, effective 3/1/03. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.08.090 and 74.04.510. 02-03-019, 388-450-0045, filed 1/4/02, effective 2/1/02; 99-16-024, 388-450-0045, filed 7/26/99, effective 9/1/99. Statutory Authority: RCW 74.04.050, 74.04.055, 74.04.057 and 74.08.090. 98-16-044, 388-450-0045, filed 7/31/98, effective 9/1/98.]

Washington State Code Reviser's Office