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AB-1604 CalWORKs: welfare-to-work: education. (2017-2018)

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Date Published: 02/18/2017 04:00 AM
AB1604:v99#DOCUMENT


CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 1604


Introduced by Assembly Member Nazarian

February 17, 2017


An act to add Section 11325.3 to the Welfare and Institutions Code, relating to CalWORKs.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1604, as introduced, Nazarian. CalWORKs: welfare-to-work: education.
Existing law establishes the California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs) program, under which each county provides cash assistance and other benefits to qualified low-income families using federal, state, and county funds. Existing law requires a recipient of CalWORKs to participate in certain welfare-to-work activities as a condition of eligibility and requires the county to assign a CalWORKs recipient who lacks a high school diploma or its equivalent to participate in adult basic education, if the recipient has completed job search activities but did not find employment and the education is needed to become employed. Existing law also requires, in order for a recipient to engage in adult basic education in satisfaction of welfare-to-work requirements, the county to perform an assessment and develop a welfare-to-work plan that includes participation in the educational activity.
This bill would instead provide that if the county determines that a CalWORKs recipient has not received his or her high school diploma or its equivalent, the recipient may participate in a high school equivalency program in order to complete a high school equivalency test recognized by the State Department of Education. The bill would authorize a recipient to participate in a high school equivalency program in lieu of participating in a job search or job club, as specified, and would prohibit a county from requiring the recipient to participate in an assessment before the recipient may engage in a high school equivalency program in satisfaction of welfare-to-work requirements.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: NO   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 11325.3 is added to the Welfare and Institutions Code, to read:

11325.3.
 (a) If, in the course of appraisal pursuant to Section 11325.2, it is determined that the recipient has not received his or her high school diploma or its equivalent, the recipient shall be eligible to participate in a high school equivalency program in order to complete the High School Equivalency Test, General Education Development Test, Test Assessing Secondary Completion, or any other high school equivalency test recognized by the State Department of Education.
(b) This section does not require a recipient to participate in a high school equivalency program. A recipient may choose to engage in a job club or a job search pursuant to Section 11325.22.
(c) Recipients eligible pursuant to this section shall not be required to participate in an assessment pursuant to Section 11325.4 prior to, or as a condition of, participation in a high school equivalency program.