3411 Support Services Specific to TANF Work Program Participation - Work program support services are available for mandatory and exempt TANF applicants and recipients. In addition to support services for work program participation, transportation and Special Services Allowances may also be available to TANF mandatory/voluntary cash eligible clients who lose cash eligibility.

TANF applicants who obtain employment while in applicant status may be eligible for transportation and Special Services Allowance if there is an identified need for employment related services (i.e., purchase of uniforms, transportation, car repair, etc.).

TANF applicants required to job search as part of their TANF eligibility may be given a transportation allowance payment using the   Job Search/Readiness (JSR) code on the KSCARES SESP screen. The payment will be based on the applicant’s need.  

 

3411.1 Transportation - Since transportation is cited by many clients as a major barrier in finding and keeping employment, ongoing communication with the client regarding transportation issues and resources is essential. Designated DCF staff are encouraged to establish and maintain communication with the Coordinated Transit District in their Region. This will assure that the public transportation providers who receive federal and state funding are made aware of the often times unique transportation needs of individuals looking for and maintaining employment. Transportation allowances for TANF clients are available to support component activity, including employment. Transportation for any activity shall be based on need. Documentation of the mode of transportation to be utilized and a back up transportation plan should be included in the case file. Documentation is also required in the event that no monthly transportation allowance is authorized.

 

More than one transportation allowance may be approved on a needs basis when a TANF client is involved in more than one approved component (including employment). For TANF clients who lose cash eligibility, the transportation allowance is available during the 12 months following the loss of cash assistance. For OJT clients, this twelve month time period begins the month following the last month of the OJT assignment.

Transportation is available for employment related needs of TANF applicants who obtain employment while in applicant status and the application for cash assistance is denied. Payment of transportation for employment related needs of these denied TANF applicants is limited to authorization in the month of TANF application and the month following the month of application.

Flexible transportation payments (FTP) are not to be used when approving applicant transportation costs. FTP is not a component and should not have scheduled hours or be used as such over extended periods of time. Vehicle purchase, repairs, insurance and registration costs shall not be authorized utilizing flexible transportation payments. Payment for these items are authorized as a Special Services Allowance, using the appropriate service code.

 

3411.2 Special Services Allowance - This allowance should be used to obtain goods and services (except transportation) needed to participate in an approved component. This allowance is also available for expenses or needs related to accepting or maintaining employment for employed individuals. For TANF clients who lose cash eligibility, the Special Services Allowance is available to cover expenses during the first twelve months following the loss of cash assistance. For OJT clients, this twelve month time period begins the month following the last month of the OJT agreement.

 

Special Services Allowances are available for employment related needs of TANF applicants who obtain employment while in applicant status and are not approved for cash assistance. Payment of this allowance for employment related needs of TANF applicants is limited to authorization in the month of TANF application or the month following the month of application.

 

NOTE: This allowance should not be used to pay fines resulting from civil and legal judgments. The Special Services Allowance shall not be used to pay for work site injury costs which are in excess of the allowed Medicaid rate. Examples of services and/or items that may be purchased with this allowance include: uniforms, eyeglasses, vehicle repairs, and the billed rate for cosmetic procedures not covered by Medicaid. An example would be dentures.

 

  1. Vehicle Purchase - The Special Services Allowance may also be used to purchase a vehicle. Vehicle purchase shall be considered only when public transportation is not available or is inadequate to meet the client's transportation needs. All available transportation options must be thoroughly explored prior to authorizing a vehicle purchase. Documentation to substantiate the need for the vehicle purchase must be included in the case file.
     
    1. All vehicle purchases must be approved by an EES Supervisor.
       
    2. Only one vehicle purchase per life time is allowed. In rare and extenuating circumstances exceptions may be approved by the EES Program Administrator.
       
    3. Only moderately priced vehicles may be purchased. The selling price of the vehicle should be equal to or lower than the Kelley Blue Book suggested retail value.

      NOTE:
      A vehicle purchased directly by the state of Kansas is exempt from Kansas sales tax(es). This would hold true even if the vehicle is not titled in the name of the state of Kansas. Prior authorization is required for vehicles with a purchase price of $5,000 or over.

      Exception:
      Vehicles purchased through the Department of Corrections, State Surplus Property Division do not require prior authorization.
       
    4. Prior to purchase vehicles must receive a vehicle repair/safety inspection conducted by a mechanic who does not represent the purchase source. The maximum payment for an inspection is limited to $50 per vehicle. Charges in excess of $50 must receive supervisory approval. A copy of the inspection report should be obtained for the case file. Suggested repair work should be negotiated in the vehicle purchase price to assure repairs are completed in a timely manner to prevent the occurrence of major breakdowns.

      Exception:
      Vehicles purchased through the Department of Corrections, State Surplus Property Division do not require an inspection.
       
    5. The client for whom vehicle purchase is being considered must possess a valid Kansas driver's license. Verification of the license validity should be obtained from Kansas Department of Revenue (KDOR) records.
       
    6. The client's driving record should be reviewed using KDOR records. If the client has been cited for a major driving violation the EES case manager shall determine with the client that the barrier has been resolved prior to vehicle purchase.
       
    7. KDOR records should be reviewed for indications of the client's insurability. Plans for a minimum of six months insurance coverage shall be in place at the time of vehicle purchase.
       
    8. The vehicle is to be titled in the client's name only or if married in the name of the client and spouse. When received, the client must provide a copy of the title for the case file.
       
    9. KDOR records should be reviewed to determine if other vehicles are registered in the client's name. If the client does own another vehicle the case file shall contain documentation to substantiate why the vehicle is not being utilized, used as a trade in or disposed of in an appropriate manner.
       
    10. A written Statement of Understanding (ES-4313) signed by the client should be maintained in the case file.
       
  2. Guidelines for Vehicle Repair - Prior to authorizing a payment for vehicle repair the following items shall be considered and documented in the case file:
     
    1. Is the vehicle registered in the client's name?
       
    2. If not, is the vehicle the only resource available to meet the client's transportation needs?
       
    3. Is the vehicle currently insured?
       
    4. Does the client have a valid driver's license?
       
  3. Relocation for Employment and/or Approved Job Skills Training, Vocational Education Allowance - TANF clients who move to accept a verified job offer or maintain full-time employment (working a minimum of 30 hours weekly, and receiving weekly earnings at least equal to the federal minimum wage multiplied by 30 hours) or to participate in approved Job Skills Training/Vocational Education may be eligible for a maximum $1,500.00 relocation allowance. This allowance may be used to pay rent, deposits (utilities and rent), moving van rentals, and mileage for moving expenses. Payments should only be made for verified expenses and that verification must be included in case file. This allowance is limited to a maximum $1,500.00 per employment relocation and $1,500.00 per approved Job Skills Training/Vocational Education relocation per client during a twelve month period.

    This allowance may be authorized during the first twelve months of cash ineligibility.
     
  1. Work Assessment Reimbursement Allowance - TANF clients may be compensated for the time at a work site to assess current skills.

    The Work Assessment Reimbursement Allowance is exempt income for all programs.

 

3411.3 Family Mentor - Family mentors may be available to visit the client and to provide a social support system. Generalized life management and parenting skills as well as work adjustment services may be offered. No payment is made for this service.

 

3411.4 Child Care - TANF clients participating in a work program activity may be eligible for JO Subtype Child Care Services. Child care plan hours authorization should correspond with expected hours of work program activity. Staff are allowed discretion when authorizing hours needed for current and/or future months.