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Title 45 Part 260

Title 45 → Subtitle B → Chapter II → Part 260

Electronic Code of Federal Regulations e-CFR

Title 45 Part 260

e-CFR data is current as of July 11, 2019

Title 45Subtitle BChapter II → Part 260


Title 45: Public Welfare


PART 260—GENERAL TEMPORARY ASSISTANCE FOR NEEDY FAMILIES (TANF) PROVISIONS


Contents

Subpart A—What Rules Generally Apply to the TANF Program?

§260.10   What does this part cover?

This part includes regulatory provisions that generally apply to the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program.

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§260.20   What is the purpose of the TANF program?

The TANF program has the following four purposes:

(a) Provide assistance to needy families so that children may be cared for in their own homes or in the homes of relatives;

(b) End the dependence of needy parents on government benefits by promoting job preparation, work, and marriage;

(c) Prevent and reduce the incidence of out-of-wedlock pregnancies and establish annual numerical goals for preventing and reducing the incidence of these pregnancies; and

(d) Encourage the formation and maintenance of two-parent families.

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§260.30   What definitions apply under the TANF regulations?

The following definitions apply under parts 260 through 265 of this chapter:

ACF means the Administration for Children and Families.

Act means Social Security Act, unless otherwise specified.

Adjusted State Family Assistance Grant, or adjusted SFAG, means the SFAG amount, minus any reductions for Tribal Family Assistance Grants paid to Tribal grantees on behalf of Indian families residing in the State and any transfers to the Social Services Block Grant or the Child Care and Development Block Grant.

Administrative costs has the meaning specified at §263.0(b) of this chapter.

Adult means an individual who is not a “minor child,” as defined elsewhere in this section.

AFDC means Aid to Families with Dependent Children.

Aid to Families with Dependent Children means the welfare program in effect under title IV-A of prior law.

Assistance has the meaning specified at §260.31.

Basic MOE means the expenditure of State funds that must be made in order to meet the MOE requirement at section 409(a)(7) of the Act.

Cash assistance, when provided to participants in the Welfare-to-Work program (WtW), has the meaning specified at §260.32.

CCDBG means the Child Care and Development Block Grant Act of 1990, as amended, 42 U.S.C. 9858 et seq.

CCDF means the Child Care and Development Fund, or those child care programs and services funded either under section 418(a) of the Act or CCDBG.

Commingled State TANF expenditures means expenditures of State funds that are made within the TANF program and commingled with Federal TANF funds.

Contingency fund means Federal TANF funds available under section 403(b) of the Act, and contingency funds means the Federal monies made available to States under that section. Neither term includes any State funds expended pursuant to section 403(b).

Contingency fund MOE means the MOE expenditures that a State must make in order to meet the MOE requirements at sections 403(b)(6) and 409(a)(10) of the Act and subpart B of part 264 of this chapter and retain contingency funds made available to the State. The only expenditures that qualify for Contingency Fund MOE are State TANF expenditures.

Control group is a term relevant to continuation of a “waiver” and has the meaning specified at §260.71.

Countable State expenditures has the meaning specified at §264.0 of this chapter.

Discretionary fund of the CCDF refers to child care funds appropriated under the CCDBG.

EA means Emergency Assistance.

Eligible State means a State that, during the 27-month period ending with the close of the first quarter of the fiscal year, has submitted a TANF plan that we have determined is complete.

Emergency assistance means the program option available to States under sections 403(a)(5) and 406(e) of prior law to provide short-term assistance to needy families with children.

Expenditure means any amount of Federal TANF or State MOE funds that a State expends, spends, pays out, or disburses consistent with the requirements of parts 260 through 265 of this chapter. It may include expenditures on the refundable portions of State or local tax credits, if they are consistent with the provisions at §260.33. It does not include any amounts that merely represent avoided costs or foregone revenue. Avoided costs include such items as contractor penalty payments for poor performance and purchase price discounts, rebates, and credits that a State receives. Foregone revenue includes State tax provisions—such as waivers, deductions, exemptions, or nonrefundable tax credits—that reduce a State's tax revenue.

Experimental group is a term relevant to continuation of a “waiver” and has the meaning specified at §260.71.

FAG has the meaning specified at §264.0(b) of this chapter.

Family Violence Option (or FVO) has the meaning specified at §260.51.

FAMIS means the automated statewide management information system under sections 402(a)(30), 402(e), and 403 of prior law.

Federal expenditures means expenditures by a State of Federal TANF funds.

Federal TANF funds means all funds provided to the State under section 403 of the Act except WtW funds awarded under section 403(a)(5), including the SFAG, any bonuses, supplemental grants, or contingency funds.

Federally recognized good cause domestic violence waiver has the meaning specified at §260.51.

Fiscal year means the 12-month period beginning on October 1 of the preceding calendar year and ending on September 30.

FY means fiscal year.

Good cause domestic violence waiver has the meaning specified at §260.51.

Governor means the Chief Executive Officer of the State. It thus includes the Governor of each of the 50 States and the Territories and the Mayor of the District of Columbia.

IEVS means the Income and Eligibility Verification System operated pursuant to the provisions in section 1137 of the Act.

Inconsistent is a term relevant to continuation of a “waiver” and has the meaning specified at §260.71.

Indian, Indian Tribe and Tribal Organization have the meaning given such terms by section 4 of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (25 U.S.C. 450b), except that the term “Indian tribe” means, with respect to the State of Alaska, only the Metlakatla Indian Community of the Annette Islands Reserve and the following Alaska Native regional nonprofit corporations:

(1) Arctic Slope Native Association;

(2) Kawerak, Inc.;

(3) Maniilaq Association;

(4) Association of Village Council Presidents;

(5) Tanana Chiefs Council;

(6) Cook Inlet Tribal Council;

(7) Bristol Bay Native Association;

(8) Aleutian and Pribilof Island Association;

(9) Chugachmuit;

(10) Tlingit Haida Central Council;

(11) Kodiak Area Native Association; and

(12) Copper River Native Association.

Individual Development Account, or IDA, has the meaning specified at §263.20 of this chapter.

Job Opportunities and Basic Skills Training Program means the program under title IV-F of prior law to provide education, training and employment services to welfare recipients.

JOBS means the Job Opportunities and Basic Skills Training Program.

Minor child means an individual who:

(1) Has not attained 18 years of age; or

(2) Has not attained 19 years of age and is a full-time student in a secondary school (or in the equivalent level of vocational or technical training).

MOE means maintenance-of-effort.

Needy State is a term that pertains to the provisions on the Contingency Fund and the penalty for failure to meet participation rates. It means, for a month, a State where:

(1)(i) The average rate of total unemployment (seasonally adjusted) for the most recent 3-month period for which data are published for all States equals or exceeds 6.5 percent; and

(ii) The average rate of total unemployment (seasonally adjusted) for such 3-month period equals or exceeds 110 percent of the average rate for either (or both) of the corresponding 3-month periods in the two preceding calendar years; or

(2) The Secretary of Agriculture has determined that the average number of individuals participating in the Food Stamp program in the State has grown at least 10 percent in the most recent 3-month period for which data are available.

Noncustodial parent means a parent of a minor child who:

(1) Lives in the State; and

(2) Does not live in the same household as the minor child.

Prior law means the provisions of title IV-A and IV-F of the Act in effect as of August 21, 1996. They include provisions related to Aid to Families with Dependent Children (or AFDC), Emergency Assistance (or EA), Job Opportunities and Basic Skills Training (or JOBS), and FAMIS.

PRWORA means the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996, or Pub. L. 104-193, 42 U.S.C. 1305 note.

Qualified Aliens has the meaning prescribed under section 431 of PRWORA, as amended, 8 U.S.C. 1641.

Qualified State Expenditures means the total amount of State funds expended during the fiscal year that count for basic MOE purposes. It includes expenditures, under any State program, for any of the following with respect to eligible families:

(1) Cash assistance;

(2) Child care assistance;

(3) Educational activities designed to increase self-sufficiency, job training, and work, excluding any expenditure for public education in the State except expenditures involving the provision of services or assistance of an eligible family that is not generally available to persons who are not members of an eligible family;

(4) Any other use of funds allowable under subpart A of part 263 of this chapter; and

(5) Administrative costs in connection with the matters described in paragraphs (1), (2), (3) and (4) of this definition, but only to the extent that such costs do not exceed 15 percent of the total amount of qualified State expenditures for the fiscal year.

Secretary means Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services or any other Department official duly authorized to act on the Secretary's behalf.

Segregated State TANF expenditures means expenditures of State funds within the TANF program that are not commingled with Federal TANF funds.

Separate State program, or SSP, means a program operated outside of TANF in which the expenditures of State funds may count for basic MOE purposes.

SFAG means State family assistance grant, as defined in this section.

SFAG payable means the SFAG amount, reduced, as appropriate, for any Tribal Family Assistance Grants made on behalf of Indian families residing in the State and any penalties imposed on a State under this chapter.

Single audit means an audit or supplementary review conducted under the authority of the Single Audit Act at 31 U.S.C. chapter 75.

Social Services Block Grant means the social services program operated under title XX of the Act, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 1397.

SSBG means the Social Services Block Grant.

State means the 50 States of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, Guam, and American Samoa, unless otherwise specified.

State agency means the agency that the Governor certifies as the administering and supervising agency for the TANF program, pursuant to section 402(a)(4) of the Act.

State family assistance grant means the amount of the basic block grant allocated to each eligible State under the formula at section 403(a)(1) of the Act.

State MOE expenditures means the expenditure of State funds that may count for purposes of the basic MOE requirements at section 409(a)(7) of the Act and the Contingency Fund MOE requirements at sections 403(b)(4) and 409(a)(10) of the Act.

State TANF expenditures means the expenditure of State funds within the TANF program.

TANF means The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Program.

TANF program means a State program of family assistance operated by an eligible State under its State TANF plan.

Territories means the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, Guam, and American Samoa.

Title IV-A refers to the title and part of the Act that now includes TANF, but previously included AFDC and EA. For the purpose of the TANF program regulations, this term does not include child care programs authorized and funded under section 418 of the Act, or their predecessors, unless we specify otherwise.

Tribal family assistance grant means a grant paid to a Tribe that has an approved Tribal family assistance plan under section 412(a)(1) of the Act.

Tribal grantee means a Tribe that receives Federal TANF funds to operate a Tribal TANF program under section 412(a) of the Act.

Tribal TANF program means a TANF program developed by an eligible Tribe, Tribal organization, or consortium and approved by us under section 412 of the Act.

Tribe means Indian Tribe or Tribal organization, as defined elsewhere in this section. The definition may include Tribal consortia (i.e., groups of federally recognized Tribes or Alaska Native entities that have banded together in a formal arrangement to develop and administer a Tribal TANF program).

Victim of domestic violence has the meaning specified at §260.51.

Waiver, when used in subpart C of this part, has the meaning specified at §260.71.

We (and any other first person plural pronouns) means the Secretary of Health and Human Services or any of the following individuals or organizations acting in an official capacity on the Secretary's behalf: the Assistant Secretary for Children and Families, the Regional Administrators for Children and Families, the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Administration for Children and Families.

Welfare-to-Work means the new program for funding work activities at section 403(a)(5) of the Act.

WtW means Welfare-to-Work.

WtW cash assistance has the meaning specified at §260.32.

[64 FR 17878, Apr. 12, 1999; 64 FR 40291, July 26, 1999]

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§260.31   What does the term “assistance” mean?

(a)(1) The term “assistance” includes cash, payments, vouchers, and other forms of benefits designed to meet a family's ongoing basic needs (i.e., for food, clothing, shelter, utilities, household goods, personal care items, and general incidental expenses).

(2) It includes such benefits even when they are:

(i) Provided in the form of payments by a TANF agency, or other agency on its behalf, to individual recipients; and

(ii) Conditioned on participation in work experience or community service (or any other work activity under §261.30 of this chapter).

(3) Except where excluded under paragraph (b) of this section, it also includes supportive services such as transportation and child care provided to families who are not employed.

(b) It excludes:

(1) Nonrecurrent, short-term benefits that:

(i) Are designed to deal with a specific crisis situation or episode of need;

(ii) Are not intended to meet recurrent or ongoing needs; and

(iii) Will not extend beyond four months.

(2) Work subsidies (i.e., payments to employers or third parties to help cover the costs of employee wages, benefits, supervision, and training);

(3) Supportive services such as child care and transportation provided to families who are employed;

(4) Refundable earned income tax credits;

(5) Contributions to, and distributions from, Individual Development Accounts;

(6) Services such as counseling, case management, peer support, child care information and referral, transitional services, job retention, job advancement, and other employment-related services that do not provide basic income support; and

(7) Transportation benefits provided under a Job Access or Reverse Commute project, pursuant to section 404(k) of the Act, to an individual who is not otherwise receiving assistance.

(c) The definition of the term assistance specified in paragraphs (a) and (b) of this section:

(1) Does not apply to the use of the term assistance at part 263, subpart A, or at part 264, subpart B, of this chapter; and

(2) Does not preclude a State from providing other types of benefits and services in support of the TANF goal at §260.20(a).

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§260.32   What does the term “WtW cash assistance” mean?

(a) For the purpose of §264.1(b)(1)(iii) of this chapter, WtW cash assistance only includes benefits that:

(1) Meet the definition of assistance at §260.31; and

(2) Are directed at basic needs.

(b) Thus, it includes benefits described in paragraphs (a)(1) and (a)(2) of §260.31, but excludes benefits described in paragraph (a)(3) of §260.31.

(c) It only includes benefits identified in paragraphs (a) and (b) of this section when they are provided in the form of cash payments, checks, reimbursements, electronic funds transfers, or any other form that can legally be converted to currency.

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§260.33   When are expenditures on State or local tax credits allowable expenditures for TANF-related purposes?

(a) To be an allowable expenditure for TANF-related purposes, any tax credit program must be reasonably calculated to accomplish one of the purposes of the TANF program, as specified at §260.20.

(b)(1) In addition, pursuant to the definition of expenditure at §260.30, we would only consider the refundable portion of a State or local tax credit to be an allowable expenditure.

(2) Under a State Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) program, the refundable portion that may count as an expenditure is the amount that exceeds a family's State income tax liability prior to application of the EITC. (The family's tax liability is the amount owed prior to any adjustments for credits or payments.) In other words, we would count only the portion of a State EITC that the State refunds to a family and that is above the amount of EITC used as credit towards the family's State income tax liability.

(3) For other refundable (and allowable) State and local tax credits, such as refundable dependent care credits, the refundable portion that would count as an expenditure is the amount of the credit that exceeds the taxpayer's tax liability prior to the application of the credit. (The taxpayer's liability is the amount owed prior to any adjustments for credits or payments.) In other words, we would count only the portion of the credit that the State refunds to the taxpayer and that is above the amount of the credit applied against the taxpayer's tax bill.

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§260.34   When do the Charitable Choice provisions of TANF apply?

(a) These Charitable Choice provisions apply whenever a State or local government uses Federal TANF funds or expends State and local funds used to meet maintenance-of-effort (MOE) requirements of the TANF program to directly procure services and benefits from non-governmental organizations, or provides TANF beneficiaries with certificates, vouchers, or other forms of indirect disbursement redeemable from such organizations. For purposes of this section:

(1) Direct funding or funds provided directly means that the government or an intermediate organization with the same duties as a governmental entity under this part selects the provider and purchases the needed services straight from the provider (e.g., via a contract or cooperative agreement).

(2) Indirect funding or funds provided indirectly means placing the choice of service provider in the hands of the beneficiary, and then paying for the cost of that service through a voucher, certificate, or other similar means of payment.

(b)(1) Religious organizations are eligible, on the same basis as any other organization, to participate in TANF as long as their Federal TANF or State MOE funded services are provided consistent with the Establishment Clause and the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.

(2) Neither the Federal government nor a State or local government in its use of Federal TANF or State MOE funds shall, in the selection of service providers, discriminate for or against an organization that applies to provide, or provides TANF services or benefits on the basis of the organization's religious character or affiliation.

(c) No Federal TANF or State MOE funds provided directly to participating organizations may be expended for inherently religious activities, such as worship, religious instruction, or proselytization. If an organization conducts such activities, it must offer them separately, in time or location, from the programs or services for which it receives direct Federal TANF or State MOE funds under this part, and participation must be voluntary for the beneficiaries of those programs or services.

(d) A religious organization that participates in the TANF program will retain its independence from Federal, State, and local governments and may continue to carry out its mission, including the definition, practice and expression of its religious beliefs, provided that it does not expend Federal TANF or State MOE funds that it receives directly to support any inherently religious activities, such as worship, religious instruction, or proselytization. Among other things, faith-based organizations may use space in their facilities to provide TANF-funded services without removing religious art, icons, scriptures, or other symbols. In addition, a Federal TANF or State MOE funded religious organization retains the authority over its internal governance, and it may retain religious terms in its organization's name, select its board members on a religious basis, and include religious references in its organization's mission statements and other governing documents.

(e) The participation of a religious organization in, or its receipt of funds from, a TANF program does not affect that organization's exemption provided under 42 U.S.C. 2000e-1 regarding employment practices.

(f) A religious organization that receives Federal TANF or State MOE funds shall not, in providing program services or benefits, discriminate against a TANF applicant or recipient on the basis of religion, a religious belief, a refusal to hold a religious belief, or a refusal to actively participate in a religious practice.

(g)(1) If an otherwise eligible TANF applicant or recipient objects to the religious character of a TANF service provider, the recipient is entitled to receive services from an alternative provider to which the individual has no religious objection. In such cases, the State or local agency must refer the individual to an alternative provider of services within a reasonable period of time, as defined by the State or local agency. That alternative provider must be reasonably accessible and have the capacity to provide comparable services to the individual. Such services shall have a value that is not less than the value of the services that the individual would have received from the program participant to which the individual had such objection, as defined by the State or local agency.

(2) The alternative provider need not be a secular organization. It must simply be a provider to which the recipient has no religious objection. States may adopt reasonable definitions of the terms “reasonably accessible,” “a reasonable period of time,” “comparable,” “capacity,” and “ value that is not less than.” We expect States to apply these terms in a fair and consistent manner.

(3) The appropriate State or local governments that administer Federal TANF or State MOE funded programs shall ensure that notice of their right to alternative services is provided to applicants or recipients. The notice must clearly articulate the recipient's right to a referral and to services that reasonably meet the timeliness, capacity, accessibility, and equivalency requirements discussed above.

(h) Religious organizations that receive Federal TANF and State MOE funds are subject to the same regulations as other non-governmental organizations to account, in accordance with generally accepted auditing/accounting principles, for the use of such funds. Religious organizations may keep Federal TANF and State MOE funds they receive for services segregated in a separate account from non-governmental funds. If religious organizations choose to segregate their funds in this manner, only the Federal TANF and State MOE funds are subject to audit by the government under the program.

(i) This section applies whenever a State or local organization uses Federal TANF or State MOE funds to procure services and benefits from non-governmental organizations, or redeems certificates, vouchers, or other forms of disbursement from them whether with Federal funds, or State and local funds claimed to meet the MOE requirements of section 409(a)(7) of the Social Security Act. Subject to the requirements of paragraph (j), when State or local funds are used to meet the TANF MOE requirements, the provisions apply irrespective of whether the State or local funds are commingled with Federal funds, segregated, or expended in separate State programs.

(j) Preemption. Nothing in this section shall be construed to preempt any provision of a State constitution, or State statute that prohibits or restricts the expenditure of segregated or separate State funds in or by religious organizations.

(k) If a non-governmental intermediate organization, acting under a contract or other agreement with a State or local government, is given the authority under the contract or agreement to select non-governmental organizations to provide Federal TANF or MOE funded services, the intermediate organization must ensure that there is compliance with the Charitable Choice statutory provisions and these regulations. The intermediate organization retains all other rights of a non-governmental organization under the Charitable Choice statute and regulations.

(l) Any party which seeks to enforce its right under this section may assert a civil action for injunctive relief exclusively in an appropriate State court against the entity or agency that allegedly commits such violation.

[68 FR 56465, Sept. 30, 2003]

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§260.35   What other Federal laws apply to TANF?

(a) Under section 408(d) of the Act, the following provisions of law apply to any program or activity funded with Federal TANF funds:

(1) The Age Discrimination Act of 1975;

(2) Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973;

(3) The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990; and

(4) Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

(b) The limitation on Federal regulatory and enforcement authority at section 417 of the Act does not limit the effect of other Federal laws, including Federal employment laws (such as the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) and unemployment insurance (UI)) and nondiscrimination laws. These laws apply to TANF beneficiaries in the same manner as they apply to other workers.

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§260.40   When are these provisions in effect?

(a) In determining whether a State is subject to a penalty under parts 261 through 265 of this chapter, we will not apply the regulatory provisions in parts 260 through 265 of this chapter retroactively. We will judge State actions that occurred prior to the effective date of these rules and expenditures of funds received prior to the effective date only against a reasonable interpretation of the statutory provisions in title IV-A of the Act.

(b) The effective date of these rules is October 1, 1999.

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Subpart B—What Special Provisions Apply to Victims of Domestic Violence?

§260.50   What is the purpose of this subpart?

Under section 402(a)(7) of the Act, under its TANF plan, a State may elect to implement a special program to serve victims of domestic violence and to waive program requirements for such individuals. This subpart explains how adoption of these provisions affects the penalty determinations applicable if a State fails to meet its work participation rate or comply with the five-year limit on Federal assistance.

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§260.51   What definitions apply to this subpart?

Family Violence Option (or FVO) means the provision at section 402(a)(7) of the Act under which a State certifies in its State plan if it has elected the option to implement comprehensive strategies for identifying and serving victims of domestic violence.

Federally recognized good cause domestic violence waiver means a good cause domestic violence waiver that meets the requirements at §§260.52(c) and 260.55.

Good cause domestic violence waiver means a waiver of one or more program requirements granted by a State to a victim of domestic violence under the FVO, as described at §260.52(c).

Victim of domestic violence means an individual who is battered or subject to extreme cruelty under the definition at section 408(a)(7)(C)(iii) of the Act.

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§260.52   What are the basic provisions of the Family Violence Option (FVO)?

Section 402(a)(7) of the Act provides that States electing the FVO certify that they have established and are enforcing standards and procedures to:

(a) Screen and identify individuals receiving TANF and MOE assistance with a history of domestic violence, while maintaining the confidentiality of such individuals;

(b) Refer such individuals to counseling and supportive services; and

(c) Provide waivers, pursuant to a determination of good cause, of normal program requirements to such individuals for so long as necessary in cases where compliance would make it more difficult for such individuals to escape domestic violence or unfairly penalize those who are or have been victimized by such violence or who are at risk of further domestic violence.

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§260.54   Do States have flexibility to grant good cause domestic violence waivers?

(a) Yes; States have broad flexibility to grant these waivers to victims of domestic violence. For example, they may determine which program requirements to waive and decide how long each waiver might be necessary.

(b) However, if a State wants us to take the waivers that it grants into account in deciding if it has reasonable cause for failing to meet its work participation rates or comply with the five-year limit on Federal assistance, has achieved compliance or made significant progress towards achieving compliance with such requirements during a corrective compliance period, or qualifies for a reduction in its work penalty under §261.51 of this chapter, the waivers must be federally recognized good cause domestic violence waivers, within the meaning of §§260.52(c) and 260.55, and the State must submit the information specified at §265.9(b)(5) of this chapter on its strategies and procedures for serving victims of domestic violence and the number of waivers granted.

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§260.55   What are the additional requirements for Federal recognition of good cause domestic violence waivers?

To be federally recognized, good cause domestic violence waivers must:

(a) Identify the specific program requirements that are being waived;

(b) Be granted appropriately based on need, as determined by an individualized assessment by a person trained in domestic violence and redeterminations no less often than every six months;

(c) Be accompanied by an appropriate services plan that:

(1) Is developed by a person trained in domestic violence;

(2) Reflects the individualized assessment and any revisions indicated by the redetermination; and

(3) To the extent consistent with §260.52(c), is designed to lead to work.

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§260.58   What penalty relief is available to a State whose failure to meet the work participation rates is attributable to providing federally recognized good cause domestic violence waivers?

(a)(1) We will determine that a State has reasonable cause if its failure to meet the work participation rates was attributable to federally recognized good cause domestic violence waivers granted to victims of domestic violence.

(2) To receive reasonable cause under the provisions of §262.5(b) of this chapter, the State must provide evidence that it achieved the applicable rates, except with respect to any individuals who received a federally recognized good cause domestic violence waiver of work participation requirements. In other words, it must demonstrate that it met the applicable rates when such waiver cases are removed from the calculations at §§261.22(b) and 261.24(b) of this chapter.

(b)(1) We will reduce a State's penalty based on the degree of noncompliance to the extent that its failure to meet the work participation rates was attributable to federally recognized good cause domestic violence waivers.

(2) To receive a reduction based on degree of noncompliance under the provisions of §261.51 of this chapter, a State granting federally recognized good cause domestic violence waivers of work participation requirements must demonstrate that it achieved participation rates above the threshold at §261.51(b)(3) of this chapter, when such waiver cases are removed from the calculations at §§261.22(b) and 261.24(b) of this chapter.

(c) We may take federally recognized good cause domestic violence waivers of work requirements into consideration in deciding whether a State has achieved compliance or made significant progress towards achieving compliance in meeting the work participation rates during a corrective compliance period.

(d) To receive the penalty relief specified in paragraphs (a), (b), and (c) of this section, the State must submit the information specified at §265.9(b)(5) of this chapter.

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§260.59   What penalty relief is available to a State that failed to comply with the five-year limit on Federal assistance because it provided federally recognized good cause domestic violence waivers?

(a)(1) We will determine that a State has reasonable cause if it failed to comply with the five-year limit on Federal assistance because of federally recognized good cause domestic violence waivers granted to victims of domestic violence.

(2) More specifically, to receive reasonable cause under the provisions at §264.3(b) of this chapter, a State must demonstrate that:

(i) It granted federally recognized good cause domestic violence waivers to extend time limits based on the need for continued assistance due to current or past domestic violence or the risk of further domestic violence; and

(ii) When individuals and their families are excluded from the calculation, the percentage of families receiving federally funded assistance for more than 60 months did not exceed 20 percent of the total.

(b) We may take federally recognized good cause domestic violence waivers to extend time limits into consideration in deciding whether a State has achieved compliance or made significant progress towards achieving compliance in meeting the five-year limit on Federal assistance during a corrective compliance period.

(c) To receive the penalty relief specified in paragraphs (a) and (b) of this section, the State must submit the information specified at §265.9(b)(5) of this chapter.

[64 FR 17878, Apr. 12, 1999]

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Subpart C—What Special Provisions Apply to States that Were Operating Programs Under Approved Waivers?

§260.70   What is the purpose of this subpart?

(a) Under section 415 of the Act, if a State was granted a waiver under section 1115 of the Act and that waiver was in effect on August 22, 1996, the amendments made by PRWORA do not apply for the period of the waiver, to the extent that they are inconsistent with the waiver and the State elects to continue its waiver.

(b) Identification of waiver inconsistencies is relevant for the determination of penalties in three areas:

(1) Under §261.50 of this chapter for failing to meet the work participation rates at part 261 of this chapter;

(2) Under §264.2 of this chapter for failing to comply with the five-year limit on Federal assistance at subpart A of part 264 of this chapter; and

(3) Under §261.54 of this chapter for failing to impose sanctions on individuals who fail to work.

(c) This subpart explains how we will determine waiver inconsistencies and apply them in the penalty determination process for these penalties.

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§260.71   What definitions apply to this subpart?

(a) Inconsistent means that complying with the TANF work participation or sanction requirements at section 407 of the Act or the time-limit requirement at section 408(a)(7) of the Act would necessitate that a State change a policy reflected in an approved waiver.

(b) Waiver consists of the work participation or time-limit component of the State's demonstration project under section 1115 of the Act. The component includes the revised AFDC requirements indicated in the State's waiver list, as approved by the Secretary under the authority of section 1115, and the associated AFDC provisions that did not need to be waived.

(c) Control group and experimental group have the meanings specified in the terms and conditions of the State's demonstration.

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§260.72   What basic requirements must State demonstration components meet for the purpose of determining if inconsistencies exist with respect to work requirements or time limits?

(a) The policies must be consistent with the requirements of section 415 of the Act and the requirements of this subpart.

(b) The policies must be within the scope of the approved waivers both in terms of geographical coverage and the coverage of the types of cases specified in the waiver approval package.

(c) The State must have applied its waiver policies on a continuous basis from the date that it implemented its TANF program, except that it may have adopted modifications that have the effect of making its policies more consistent with the provisions of PRWORA.

(d) An inconsistency may not apply beyond the earlier of the following dates:

(1) The expiration of waiver authority as determined in accordance with the demonstration terms and conditions; or

(2) For any specific inconsistency, the date upon which the State discontinued the applicable waiver policy.

(e) The State must submit the Governor's certification specified in §260.75.

(f) In general, the policies in this subpart do not have the effect of delaying the date when a State might be subject to the work or time-limit penalties at §§261.50, 261.54, and 264.1 of this chapter or the data collection requirements at part 265 of this chapter.

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§260.73   How do existing welfare reform waivers affect the participation rates and work rules?

(a) If a State is implementing a work participation component under a waiver, in accordance with this subpart, the provisions of section 407 of the Act will not apply in determining if a penalty should be imposed, to the extent that the provision is inconsistent with the waiver.

(b) For the purpose of determining if the State's demonstration has a work participation component, the waiver list for the demonstration must include one or more specific provisions that directly correspond to the work policies in section 407 of the Act (i.e., change allowable JOBS activities, exemptions from JOBS participation, hours of required JOBS participation, or sanctions for noncompliance with JOBS participation).

(c) Corresponding to the inconsistencies certified by the Governor under §260.75:

(1) We will calculate the State's work participation rates, by:

(i) Excluding cases exempted from participation under the demonstration component and, if applicable, experimental and control cases not otherwise exempted, in calculating the rate;

(ii) Defining work activities as defined in the demonstration component in determining the numerator; and

(iii) Including cases meeting the required number of hours of participation in work activities in accordance with demonstration component policy, in determining the numerator.

(2) We will determine whether a State is taking appropriate sanctions when an individual refuses to work based on the State's certified waiver policies.

(d) We will use the data submitted by States pursuant to §265.3 of this chapter to calculate and make public a State's work participation rates under both the TANF requirements and the State's alternative waiver requirements.

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§260.74   How do existing welfare reform waivers affect the application of the Federal time-limit provisions?

(a)(1) If a State is implementing a time-limit component under a waiver, in accordance with this subpart, the provisions of section 408(a)(7) of the Act will not apply in determining if a penalty should be imposed, to the extent that they are inconsistent with the waiver.

(2) For the purpose of determining if the State's demonstration has a time-limit component, the waiver list for the demonstration must include provisions that directly correspond to the time-limit policies enumerated in section 408(a)(7) of the Act (i.e., address which individuals or families are subject to, or exempt from, terminations of assistance based solely on the passage of time or who qualifies for extensions to the time limit).

(b)(1) Generally, under an approved waiver, except as provided in paragraph (b)(3) of this section, a State will count, toward the Federal five-year limit, all months for which the head-of-household or spouse of the head-of-household subject to the State time limit receives assistance with Federal TANF funds, just as it would if it did not have an approved waiver.

(2) The State need not count, toward the Federal five-year limit, any months for which a head-of-household or spouse of the head-of-household receives assistance with Federal TANF funds while that individual is exempt from the State's time limit under the State's approved waiver.

(3) Where a State has continued a time limit under waivers that only terminates assistance for adults, the State need not count, toward the Federal five-year limit, any months for which an adult subject to the State time limit receives assistance with Federal TANF funds.

(4) The State may continue to provide assistance with Federal TANF funds for more than 60 months, without a numerical limit, to families provided extensions to the State time limit, under the provisions of the terms and conditions of the approved waiver.

(c) Corresponding to the inconsistencies certified by the Governor under §260.75, we will calculate the State's time-limit exceptions by:

(1) Excluding, from the determination of the number of months of Federal assistance received by a family:

(i) Any month in which the adult(s) were exempt from the State's time limit under the terms of an approved waiver or any months in which the children received assistance under a waiver that only terminated assistance to adults; and

(ii) If applicable, experimental and control group cases not otherwise exempted; and

(2) Applying the State's waiver policies with respect to the availability of extensions to the time limit.

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§260.75   If a State is claiming a waiver inconsistency for work requirements or time limits, what must the Governor certify?

(a) The Governor of the State must certify in writing to the Secretary that:

(1) The applicable policies have been continually applied in operating the TANF program, as described in §260.72(c);

(2) The inconsistencies claimed by the State are within the scope of the approved waivers, as described in §260.72(b);

(b) The certification must identify the specific inconsistencies that the State chooses to continue with respect to work and time limits.

(1) If the waiver inconsistency claim includes work provisions, the certification must specify the standards that will apply, in lieu of the provisions in subparts B and C of part 261 of this chapter, to determine:

(i) The number of two-parent and all-parent cases that are exempt from participation, if any, for the purpose of determining the denominator of the work participation rate;

(ii) The number of nonexempt two-parent and all-parent cases that are participating in work activities for the purpose of determining the numerator of the work participation rate, including standards applicable to;

(A) Countable work activities; and

(B) Required hours of work for participation for individual participants; and

(iii) The penalty against an individual or family when an individual refuses to work.

(2) If the waiver inconsistency claim includes time-limit provisions, the certification must include the standards that will apply, in lieu of the provisions in §264.1 of this chapter, in determining:

(i) Which families are counted toward the Federal time limit; and

(ii) Whether a family is eligible for an extension of its time limit on federally funded assistance.

(3) If the State is continuing policies for evaluation purposes in accordance with §260.76:

(i) The certification must specify any special work or time-limit standards that apply to the control group and experimental group cases; and

(ii) The State may choose to exclude cases assigned to the experimental and control groups, which are not otherwise exempt, for the purpose of calculating the work participation rate or determining State compliance related to limiting assistance to families including adults who have received 60 months of Federal TANF assistance. In doing so, the State may effectively exclude all experimental group cases and/or control group cases, not otherwise exempt, but may not exclude individual cases on a selective basis.

(c) The certification may include a claim of inconsistency with respect to hours of required participation in work activities only if the State has written evidence that, when implemented, the waiver policies established specific requirements related to hours of work for nonexempt individuals.

(d)(1) The Governor's certification must be provided no later than October 1, 1999.

(2) If a State modifies its waiver policies in a way that has a substantive effect on the determination of its work sanctions, or the calculation of its work participation rates or its time-limit exceptions, it must submit an amended certification no later than the end of the fiscal quarter in which the modifications take effect.

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§260.76   What special rules apply to States that are continuing evaluations of their waiver demonstrations?

If a State is continuing research that employs an experimental design in order to complete an impact evaluation of a waiver demonstration, the experimental and control groups may continue to be subject to prior AFDC law, except as modified by the waiver.

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