Philip Y. Ting
Existing law provides for the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) , administered in California as CalFresh, under which each county distributes nutrition assistance benefits provided by the federal government to eligible households. Existing law requires each county human services agency to carry out the local administrative responsibilities of this program, subject to the supervision of the State Department of Social Services and to rules and regulations adopted by the department. Among other requirements, existing law requires each county welfare department to, if appropriate, exempt a household from complying with face-to-face interview requirements for purposes of determining eligibility at initial application and recertification. Existing law requires the department to implement a semiannual reporting system regarding CalFresh, as specified. This bill would require the department to establish and require the use of self-attestation by CalFresh applicants and beneficiaries to verify required information to the extent permitted by federal law and to apply for any waivers necessary to simplify verification requirements. The bill would require the department to issue guidance that prohibits a county human services agency from requesting additional documents to verify dependent care expenses, except as specified. The bill would require the department to take specified actions by January 1, 2022, in an effort to expand CalFresh program outreach and retention and improve dual enrollment between the CalFresh and Medi-Cal programs. The bill would also require county departments, no later than January 1, 2024, to provide prepopulated CalFresh applications to Medi-Cal beneficiaries who are apparently CalFresh eligible and not dually enrolled during the Medi-Cal renewal process and to utilize text messaging as a method of communication, as specified. The bill would also include a statement of legislative findings and declarations. Existing law requires the department to annually seek a federal waiver of the existing federal SNAP limitation that stipulates that an able-bodied adult without dependents participant is limited to 3 months of CalFresh benefits in a 3-year period unless that participant has met the work participation requirement or is otherwise exempt. If a county is not eligible for a countywide waiver, existing law authorizes a county to request the department to apply for the waiver for one or more eligible subareas of the county. This bill would instead require the department to apply for that waiver, except as specified. 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 law requires, to the extent permitted by federal law, the department to implement the semiannual reporting system, including the use of the semiannual report form, in the CalFresh program. This bill would require the department to convene a workgroup to consider changes to semiannual reporting and the prospective budgeting structure and would require the workgroup's recommendations to be submitted to the Legislature by October 1, 2021. The bill would also make various changes to the existing semiannual reporting requirements, including by, among other things, requiring counties to attempt to collect necessary information to complete a recipient's semiannual report form if the recipient has failed to complete the form by a specified date. By imposing a higher level of service on county welfare departments, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program. The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement. This bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.
From committee: Do pass and re-refer to Com. on APPR. with recommendation: To Consent Calendar. (Ayes 8. Noes 0.) (May 7). Re-referred to Com. on APPR.
From committee chair, with author's amendments: Amend, and re-refer to Com. on HUM. S. Read second time and amended.
In committee: Hearing postponed by committee.
From printer. May be heard in committee March 20.
Read first time. To print.
|Bill Text Versions||Format|
|02/18/20 - Introduced|
|05/04/20 - Amended Assembly|
|No related documents.|
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