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AB-167 CalWORKs: CalFresh: semiannual reporting.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 03/09/2017 09:00 PM
AB167:v97#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  March 09, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  February 27, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 167


Introduced by Assembly Member Lackey
(Coauthors: Assembly Members Acosta, Baker, Gallagher, Cristina Garcia, Mathis, Voepel, and Waldron)
(Coauthors: Senators Anderson, Hertzberg, Nielsen, and Wilk)

January 17, 2017


An act to amend Section 11265 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, relating to public social services.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 167, as amended, Lackey. CalWORKs: CalFresh: semiannual reporting.
Existing law requires each county to provide cash assistance and other social services to needy families through the California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs) program using federal Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) block grant program, state, and county funds.
Under existing law, the county is required to annually redetermine eligibility for CalWORKs benefits and, at the time of redetermination, require the family to complete a certificate of eligibility. Existing law additionally requires the county to redetermine recipient eligibility and grant amounts on a semiannual basis and requires the recipient to submit a semiannual report form during the first semiannual reporting period following the application or annual redetermination of eligibility.
Existing federal law provides for the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, known in California as CalFresh, under which food assistance benefits are distributed to eligible individuals by the counties. Existing law requires, to the extent permitted by federal law, the department to implement the semiannual reporting system, including use of the semiannual report form, in the CalFresh program
This bill would require the county to use either a prepopulated renewal form or a blank semiannual report form as the certificate of eligibility for the purposes of CalWORKs and CalFresh.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 Section 11265 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:

11265.
 (a) The county shall redetermine eligibility annually. The county shall at the time of the redetermination, and may at other intervals as may be deemed necessary, require the family to complete a certificate of eligibility containing a written declaration of the information that may be required to establish the continuing eligibility and amount of grant pursuant to Section 11004.
(b) (1) Notwithstanding any other provision of this division, the county shall use either a prepopulated renewal form or a blank semiannual report form described in Section 11265.1 as the certificate of eligibility for the purposes of CalWORKs and CalFresh. The department shall ensure that the semiannual report form contains all information required by federal law and regulation for purposes of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and State Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) eligibility.
(2) Each adult member of the family shall provide, under penalty of perjury, the information necessary to complete the certificate, or, if a prepopulated renewal form is used as the certificate, shall mark any changes to the information provided by the county.
(c) (1) If the certificate is mailed to the family, it shall be mailed no later than the end of the month prior to the month it is due and shall be accompanied by a postage-paid envelope for its return. If a complete certificate is not received by the 15th day of the month in which the certificate is due, the county shall provide the recipient with a notice that the county will terminate benefits at the end of the month. Prior to terminating benefits, the county shall attempt to make personal contact by a county worker to remind the recipient that a completed certificate is due. The certificate shall be completed with the assistance of the eligibility worker, if needed. For recipients also receiving CalFresh benefits, the certificate shall be completed pursuant to the timeframes required by federal and state law for the CalFresh program.
(2) The department may adopt regulations providing for waiver of the deadline for returning the completed certificate when the recipient is considered to be mentally or physically unable to meet the deadline.
(d) (1) This section shall become operative on April 1, 2013. A county shall implement the requirements of this section no later than October 1, 2013.
(2) Upon implementation described in paragraph (1), each county shall provide a certificate to the director certifying that semiannual reporting has been implemented in the county.
(3) Upon filing the certificate described in paragraph (2), a county shall comply with this section.