M E M O R A N D U M
TO: EES Program Administrators
FROM: Sandra Kimmons
SUBJECT: Implementation Instructions - KEESM Revision #94
This memo provides implementation instructions and information for the following July 1, 2019, policy changes in the Kansas Economic and Employment Services Manual (KEESM).
- All Programs – See Summary of Changes section I, B, 1 and 2, and KEESM 6200 and 6300.
Effective with the July 1 policy changes staff should use the following workaround:
Staff should use the Disability – Not Expected to return to work or the Worker’s Comp – Not Expected to return to work income types regardless of whether or not the individual is expected to return to work. This allows the income to be counted as unearned rather than earned. Staff should no longer use Worker’s Comp – Expected to return to work or Disability – Expected to return to work. Ongoing cases will be updated at next IR, Review, or reported change.
- Child Care
- Minimum work hours requirement – See Summary of Changes Overview, section II, A, 3, and KEESM 2835.
Effective July 1, 2019, for child care cases subject to the requirement, the minimum work hours requirement for adults on a child care case is being changed to 20 hours per week. Effective with all eligibility determinations made on or after July 1, 2019, if adults included on the child care case are employed an average of at least 20 hours per week, they will be considered to be meeting the minimum requirement. This will include determinations of eligibility for months prior to July 2019.
- Scenario: Mary applies for child care assistance for her two children on June 22, 2019 and is employed 25 hours per week. The application is being processed on July 2, 2019.
Action to be taken: Even though the minimum hours requirement was 28 hours per week during the month of June, if all other eligibility factors are met, child care will be approved for the month of June since the case is being processed on or after July 1st.
- Scenario: Samantha and her husband Joe apply for child care for their infant son on August 1, 2019. Samantha works 18 hours per week and Joe works 25 hours per week
Action to be taken: This application for child care would be denied, as both adults on the child care case must be employed a minimum of 20 hours per week.
- Scenario: Carol applies for child care assistance on August 15, 2019. She is a post-secondary student who expects to complete her program in 18 months. At this time she is employed 18 - 20 hours per week, so she meets the minimum work hours requirement for post-secondary students. She provides the necessary forms and documentation, and her child care case is approved for August of 2019 through July of 2020. On January 6, 2020, she reports that she has cut back her work hours to 10 to 12 hours per week, as she was feeling overwhelmed with her school work. As a result, her monthly income has decreased.
Action to be taken: Action would be taken to reflect the decrease in income, and her family share deduction would be adjusted down if appropriate. Due to 12-month eligibility policy, no action would be taken to reduce the child care hours approved. When she submits her review in July of 2020, if she remains employed less than 15 hours per week, the review application would be denied and Carol would not receive child care assistance after July.
- Child Care for post-secondary education – See Summary of Changes Overview, section II, A, 3, and KEESM 2835.
Beginning July 1, 2019, child care benefits may be provided for individuals who are pursuing a post-secondary education plan that they may not be able to complete within 24 months, if all other criteria of 2835, item (4) are met. The 24-month lifetime limit to receive child care for post-secondary education purposes remains in place, and those 24 months need not be consecutive. The ES-1640 has been revised to reflect this change, and the form has been added back to the KEESM. EES staff will need to use the form in the KEESM forms section and not the one generated by KEES.
- Child Care for Food Assistance work program and foster care – See Summary of Changes Overview, section I, A, 1, 3, 5-8, and KEESM 1423, 2835, 7401, 7600, 7620, 7640, and 9374.
Also effective July 1, 2019, child care assistance will be provided for applicants who are participating in any Food Assistance work program, and for children in licensed foster home. Adults in foster families are not considered to be included adults per statute 39-709 (16) (B).
- The FAET need reason will be used for all child care cases for Food Assistance work program participants. The actual FA E&T program will primarily be used for ABAWDS, but there will be the occasional situation of a parent with 50/50 joint custody of their child, but the child is included on the other parent’s FA case. The ABAWD may need child care for the time the child is with them. These situations will require approval from FA Work Program Administration.
Previous policy had excluded participants in the GOALS program from eligibility for child care. GOALS staff will complete a self-sufficiency agreement with program participants that includes a schedule of when child care is needed. That will serve as a referral and will go to the red team for processing. The career navigator submits the self-sufficiency agreement to the Office email box (DCF.OfficeEES@ks.gov) and in the subject line enters GOALS Child Care Request – Red Team for processing the request.
Participants in the GOALS program must meet general eligibility requirements and will have eligibility for child care determined by eligibility staff. Staff approving these child care cases need to be sure they are using the correct reason code in accordance with policy information in KEESM 2835, item #2.
If the FA E&T need reason is selected, no family share deduction is assigned to the case.
Scenario: Susie has an open Food Assistance case and is participating in a Food Assistance work program. Susie’s activity is 15 hours per week of employment as well as a training program, and she needs child care in order to participate. The career navigator and Susie complete a new self-sufficiency agreement and the career navigator then submits the self-sufficiency agreement to the Office email box and in the subject line enters GOALS Child Care Request – Red Team for processing the request. Eligibility staff will open a Child Care program block and process the request using the need reason of FAET Participation and the schedule that Employment Services provided.
Scenario: Same as above, but two months into the program, Susie decides she no longer wants to attend training, but she continues to be employed 15 hours per week. The career navigator will notify the purple team that she is no longer a GOALS participant. Since she is still doing part of the original activity plan, child care would continue with the original need reason through the remainder of the 12-month eligibility period.
Scenario: The same situation with Susie, but rather than continue her employment, Susie quits both her training and her job. When the information is reported to the purple team, Susie will be allowed a three-month continuation of child care to get herself back into an activity (unless she specifically says that she does not intend to attempt to resume any activity). If she resumes any eligible activity (even if less than 20 hours per week), child care will continue through the 12-month eligibility period. If she does not resume an activity, child care will close at the end of the three-month period. If she states that she does not intend to resume any activity, the child care can be closed allowing for timely and adequate notice.
Scenario: Mary and John are receiving Food Assistance for themselves as well as 2 children. John is working 25 hours per week but Mary is wanting to complete a training to enhance her employability status. She wants to participate in GOALS. Child care will be needed in order for her to complete the training. Child Care will be determined under the FAET need reason overall (FAET Participation for Mary and Maintain Employment for John) and no family share will be assessed to the household (this is because at least 1 adult is participating in GOALS). When the Carrier Navigator is completing the self-sufficiency agreement including the child care request, both adults’ schedules will be included in determining the number of hours needed for care. (If John is not meeting the 20 hours per week work requirement, there would not be eligibility for child care unless he was also participating in the GOALS program).
- The Social Service Child Care need reason will be used for all child care cases that include children in foster care, whether they’re in a relative or kinship placement, or in licensed foster care. Using this need reason, these cases will not be assigned a family share deduction. A separate child care application (ES-3100-FC) has been developed for use with these cases. The applications will be completed by the foster family and will be signed off on by the Child Placing Agency (CPA) or Case Management Agency (CMA). These applications will be sent directly to the foster care child care unit whose primary duty is to process these applications and maintain the child care cases, acting on all changes including foster care placement changes. Changes will be reported to the foster care child care unit via the new FC-CC Change Form ES-1512 FC.
Conversion/authorizing child care benefits for these cases began by a team of specifically trained workers when the new application became available on May 25, 2019 and is expected to be completed for all new cases of child care assistance for children in foster care by the end of June, authorizing benefits beginning in July. Priority is being given to those not already receiving child care, so relatives or kinship placements already receiving social service child care for a child in foster care will be converted to blocks of time as soon as possible.
The hours child care is needed for the child(ren) in foster care will be calculated, and blocks of time will be authorized. If the hours needed are 25 per week or less, 25 hours per week will be authorized for the children in foster care. If the hours are over 25 per week, 50 hours per week will be authorized. No family share will be assigned. See the Process Manual for Child Care for Children in Foster Care.
In the event that there are two caregivers in the foster family, the W-13 worksheet will need to be utilized to determine the schedule to be listed in KEES by the caregiver who is assigned care and control.
Foster families who need child care for their own children in addition to children in foster care may complete both the ES-3100 and the ES-3100-FC, OR they may complete just the ES-3100 and have a ES-1627b completed and attached which will be signed off on by the CMA or the CPA. The family must meet financial and non-financial eligibility criteria to receive benefits for their own children. Benefits for their own children will be authorized using the actual hours child care is needed. If the family is not financially and non-financially eligible for their own children, child care will be denied for those children and approved for only the foster child(ren). See the Child Care Desk Aid for Foster Families with Non-Foster Care Children for details.
Again, no family share deduction is assigned to any child care case using the social service need reason, whether or not the foster family’s own children are included.
If the foster family is only receiving child care benefits for a child or children in foster care, no formal review will be required. However, if they are receiving child care for their own children as well, they will be required to complete the review process for the non-foster child(ren). The family must remain financially and non-financially eligible to continue receiving child care for their own children.
While the 3100 FC is expected to be submitted electronically by the CMA or CPA to an email box for the Foster Care Child Care unit, it is possible that applications may come in to the local service centers either on line or in person. If a 3100 FC is received in a local service center and the family is applying for child care only for children in foster care, service center staff are to scan that application and send it to the FC-CC unit email box at DCF.FosterCareCC@ks.gov. Again, refer to the Child Care Desk Aid for Foster Families with Non-Foster Care Children.
These families will most likely be receiving foster care payments for the children in foster care. If this income were coded as foster care payments, KEES would deny child care eligibility. For this reason, this income will need to be coded in KEES as Adoption Assistance Subsidy under the category Government Payments.
In the event that eligibility staff would process their part of a combo case first, the EES eligibility worker can process the case as normal for all programs except child care. EDBC would need to be checked, but not saved and accepted until the child care for the children in foster care is processed by the FC-CC unit.
- An ES-3100 FC is received through the FC-CC email box and is signed by the CPA or CMA. All needed documents are attached. The FC-CC unit will process the case to completion using the Process Manual for Child Care for Children in Foster Care.
- A foster family submits an application by mail with all necessary verifications to the local service center for child care for both children in foster care and their own children. A determination has been made that the family does not meet the income guidelines to receive child care for their own children. Those children would be denied, and the children in foster care would still be approved.
- Employment Services – See Summary of Changes Overview, section III, A, 8, and KEESM 3410.
Effective July 1, 2019, The 24-month TANF time limit is being removed from KEESM 3410 as a reason to deny transitional support services. KEES will not update the WP program block to transitional status when TANF closes due to time limits. The career navigator will be required to manually reopen the program block and place the client(s) in transitional status. Staff should enter a Begin Date for the Status so the batch run will close the WP program block after 1 year. Do not enter an End Date. If an End Date is entered, the Case Summary page will get an error and a help desk ticket will need to be logged.