Title: Section 370.4 - Determination and payment of the grant.

370.4 Determination and payment of the grant. (a) General. Determination of initial and continuing eligibility and the amount of the grant must be based upon the State-established standards of assistance. Needs must be determined, resources explored and utilized, and the budgetary method applied, as required by Part 352 of this Subchapter. The form and frequency of the grant must be appropriate to individual case circumstances.

(b) Payment of grants. (1) Cash assistance. Except as provided in subparagraph (i) of this paragraph, safety net assistance must be granted in cash except when the granting of cash may be deemed inappropriate by the social services district because of an inability to manage funds, or because less expensive or more easily controlled alternative methods of payment are available, or when vendor payments are made to landlords on behalf of individuals residing in public housing, or for similar other reasons as established by Part 381 of this Chapter. However, where an individual has so requested, safety net assistance may be granted in whole or in part by restricted payment. Safety net cash assistance is limited as follows:

(i) Cash assistance cannot be provided to:

(a) families in which the head of household or an adult household member is determined to be unable to work by reason of his or her need for treatment for alcohol or substance abuse in accordance with section 351.2(i) of this Title;

(b) members of a household in which the head of household or an adult household member refused to comply with screening or formal assessment for alcohol or substance abuse in accordance with section 351.2(i) of this Title;

(c) members of a household in which the head of household or an adult household member fails to comply with an alcohol or substance abuse rehabilitation program in accordance with section 351.2(i) of this Title;

(d) families which are ineligible for FA because an adult in the family has exceeded the maximum durational limit in accordance with section 369.4(d) of this Title, unless the adult is exempt from employment requirements or is HIV positive and not determined to be unable to work by reason of his or her need for treatment for alcohol or substance abuse in accordance with section 351.2(i) of this Title; and

(e) persons who have received safety net cash assistance for a twoyear (twenty-four month) cumulative total in a lifetime, including the receipt of recurring emergency safety net cash assistance, unless an adult head of household is exempt from work requirements or is HIV positive and not determined to be unable to work by reason of his or her need for treatment for alcohol or substance abuse in accordance with section 351.2(i) of this Title.

Persons eligible for safety net assistance who cannot receive cash assistance pursuant to this subparagraph, must be provided with safety net non-cash assistance.

(ii) Safety net cash assistance must be limited to a two-year (twentyfour month) cumulative total for eligible persons not exempt from employment requirements or not HIV positive and not determined to be unable to work by reason of his or her need for treatment for alcohol or substance abuse in accordance with section 351.2(i) of this Title. The month in which a safety net cash assistance benefit is issued, by any method of payment, counts against the two-year (twenty-four month) limit. This limitation applies to individuals in receipt of safety net assistance or Home Relief on or after August 4, 1997. An individual or head of household who is exempt from employment requirements or HIV positive and not determined to be unable to work by reason of his or her need for treatment for alcohol or substance abuse in accordance with section 351.2(i) of this Title, continues to be eligible for cash assistance indefinitely.

(iii) The months in which any individual receives recurring emergency safety net assistance must count against the two-year (twenty-four month) cumulative total of safety net cash assistance.

(iv) The cumulative total of months in which an individual received safety net cash assistance benefits is applied against the cumulative 60 month limit on the receipt of FA in accordance with section 369.4(d) of this Title.

(2) Non-cash assistance. Safety net assistance paid as non-cash assistance must be paid in the following manner and in the following order:

(i) Shelter assistance. A district must make a payment for shelter by direct payment, two-party check or other form of restricted payment up to the maximum amount established by Part 352 of this Title. The district may make a payment for a recipient's shelter in excess of such maximum, at the request of the recipient, limited by a sufficient budget deficit amount. Payments for shelter are subject to the provisions of Social Services Law, section 143-b. A district must make payment for shelter by two-party check upon the request of the recipient, provided that the recipient has not demonstrated persistent failure to make shelter payments as defined in section 381.3 of this Title. The district must provide the recipient promptly with proof of payment, upon request of the recipient.

(ii) Utility assistance. A district must make a direct payment, payment by two-party check or other form of restricted payment on behalf of recipients of safety net assistance who pay separately for utilities. Payment for utilities must include payment for fuel for heating on behalf of recipients who are eligible for a fuel for heating allowance pursuant to section 352.5 of this Title. Payments for fuel for heating may not exceed the fuel for heating allowance except that a district may make a payment in excess of such amount at the request of the recipient. The district must provide the recipient promptly with proof of payment, upon request of the recipient.

(iii) Personal needs allowance. A district must provide each household with a personal needs allowance, limited by a sufficient budget deficit amount, equal to 20 percent of the sum of the statewide standard of need, statewide home energy allowance and the statewide supplemental home energy allowance, for the appropriate household size, in accordance with sections 352.2 and 352.29 of this Title.

(iv) Other assistance. Any remaining budget deficit amount must be provided on a non-cash basis, provided that an electronic benefit transfer system is operating in the district in which the recipient resides. Districts which do not have an electronic benefit transfer system operating, must provide any remaining deficit amount as a cash benefit to the recipient.

(3) Persons not residing in their own homes. Persons residing in certain residential settings set forth in this paragraph have living arrangements different from those of persons residing in their own apartments or homes. Persons living in those living arrangements have a higher standard of need than the maximum public assistance standards of need for persons who maintain their own homes. Payments for persons in such residential settings do not fit in the ordinary payment methods for safety net non-cash assistance. For persons receiving non-cash safety net assistance in accordance with paragraph (2) of this subdivision who are residing in room and board, approved residential programs for victims of domestic violence operated in accordance with Parts 452, 453, 454 or 455 of this Title, maternity homes, family care, residential care, drug abuse control facilities, or family shelters operated in accordance with Part 900 of this Title the standards of assistance and the amounts of the personal needs allowances are set forth in section 352.8 and Parts 408 and 900 of this Title. Payments to such facilities or providers of room and board for persons who receive non-cash safety net assistance and personal needs allowances paid to such persons shall be in the amounts set forth in section 352.8 and Parts 408 and 900 of this Title.

 

Volume

VOLUME A-1 (Title 18)

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