KANSAS DEPARTMENT FOR CHILDREN
DCF Administration Building
555 S. Kansas Ave., 6th Floor
Topeka, KS 66603
Economic and Employment Services Program Administrators
Economic and Employment Services Staff
KDHE-HCF Staff, including the KanCare Clearinghouse
Prevention and Protection Services Administrators
Summary of Changes for Kansas Economic and Employment Services Manual (KEESM) Revision No. 77 effective July 1, 2016
OVERVIEW OF CHANGES
A brief overview of the major changes is described below. Other clarifications and technical corrections are also included and described in the next section. Additional technical corrections not mentioned here are being incorporated in KEESM, as needed.
All Cash, Child Care and Food Assistance Programs – Mandatory Identity verification for all adults in the assistance household is now required for eligibility purposes.
Child Care – As a result of the November 2014 reauthorization of the Child Care and Development Block Grant and the 2016 Kansas HOPE act, changes are being made in eligibility for child care assistance, effective July 1, 2016.
All child care plans will be set for 12 months duration, with few exceptions. Those child care plans will only be ended prior to the end of that 12-month period in limited circumstances.
At review, if income exceeds initial eligibility standards of 185 percent of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL), but remains below 85 percent of the State Median Income (SMI), eligibility will be extended for an additional 3 months to allow for families to make the transition to full responsibility for their child care expenses.
Priority of child care services will be extended to homeless children by adding homeless families to the list of priority codes for use if a waiting list should become necessary.
The minimum-work-hours requirement is waived for Food Assistance Education and Training (FA E&T) participants, and child care may be provided for both mandatory and voluntary FA E&T participants.
Child care will be provided for children whose parents are participating in the Kansas Early Head Start/Child Care Partnership program. Eligibility for these children will be determined by the Early Head Start grantees, with the exception of child support and fraud cooperation. Child care plans will be written for hours determined by the grantees, and no family share will be assigned to these cases. These applications, identified by the accompanying referral from the Early Head Start Grantee, will be processed within seven calendar days of receipt of the referral.
The maximum allowable non-exempt resources of all members of a child care family group will not $10,000.
Child Care Providers – As a result of the November 2014 reauthorization of the Child Care and Development Block Grant, changes are being made in the types of providers that may be enrolled by DCF to receive payment for services provided for DCF eligible children.
Food Assistance – A work registration requirement is being emphasized in KEESM 3100 and item E-26, Food Assistance Work Registration Requirements, is being added to the Appendix.
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and Child Care – When an adult fails to cooperate with a TANF or child care fraud investigation, there is ineligibility for all members included on the program being investigated until cooperation has been established in the fraud investigation.
TANF – TANF is now time-limited to 24 months. Hardship provisions allow households to remain eligible for 36 months.
The implementation memo explains how this new time limit will be rolled out for existing households with more than 18 months of TANF assistance. The completion of at least one KeyTrain module as a requirement for TANF is being removed.
The completion of the Self-Assessment and the online Employment Services orientation tutorial as requirements for TANF is being added.
DESCRIPTION, PURPOSE, AND DETAILS OF POLICY CHANGE
- All Cash, Child Care and Food Assistance Programs
- Mandatory Identity verification – KEESM 1322.1 (5) is being changed to include all adult household members will need to have their identity verified for eligibility purposes.
- Child Support Referral – KEESM 2160 is being updated to clarify that cooperation with Kansas Child Support Services is required even if the individual has child support services through a different state.
- Child Care
- How to Apply – Applicable to All Programs –This policy is being changed to require an application if a food assistance work program participant requests child care any time after the month following the month of application or after the first month of the review period. Text indicating that an application is not necessary for Food Assistance work program participants is being removed from the note at the end of KEESM 1411.1, and the note is being integrated into the list as item 5.
- Time in Which Application is to be Processed and Case Disposition – KEESM 1413 is being modified to reflect the seven-calendar-day-processing time for child care applications for children whose parents are participating in the Kansas Early Head Start/Child Care Partnership program.
- Termination of Assistance – KEESM 1424 is being modified to reflect that for child care, assistance may only be terminated prior to the end of a 12-month eligibility when one of the conditions of 7640 is met.
- General Requirements– KEESM 2810 is being modified to indicate that due to the 12 month eligibility requirements, a child turning age 13 will continue to be eligible for child care until the last month of the eligibility period in which the child reaches his/her 13th birthday.
- Personal Need – KEESM 2820 is being modified to include an additional allowable need reason to qualify for child care, adding child care for persons participating in the Kansas Early Head Start/Child Care Partnership program.
- JO (TANF) Child Care and EM (Non-TANF) Child Care – KEESM 2831 and KEESM 2835 are being modified to increase the length of time a social service child care case will be authorized to 12 months, in accordance with Child Care and Development Fund requirements. Social service child care plans will be limited to one 12-month period, after which families must meet another of the qualifying reasons for child care in order to continue receiving child care assistance. KEESM 2835 is also being modified to allow child care for all (both mandatory and voluntary) food assistance work registrants to participate in the Food Assistance E&T work program.
A new reason code (EH) is being added for plans written for children whose parents/caretakers are participating in the Kansas Early Head Start/Child Care Partnership program. The code is being added to new items KEESM 2831 (4) and 2835 (6). It is also noted in 2835 (6) that there will be no family share for these cases.
- Priorities for Child Care Services – KEESM 2840 is being modified to add homeless families to the list of priorities for families receiving child care assistance.
- Kansas Early Head Start/Child Care Partnership – A new section, KEESM 2860, is being added to include policies and procedures regarding parents or caretakers participating in the Kansas Early Head Start/Child Care Partnership Program.
- Maximum Allowable Resource Limits – KEESM 5140 is being modified to change the maximum allowable resources for child care. Effective July 1, 2016, the maximum allowable non-exempt resources of a family group receiving child care is $10,000. The resource limit will apply to all child care cases except those in which the only children receiving child care assistance are also receiving TANF or SSI.
- Eligibility Period for Child Care Assistance – KEESM 7340 is being modified to indicate that child care eligibility periods will be set up for 12 months, with the only exceptions listed in KEESM 7640.
- Determining Scheduled Hours – KEESM 7620 is being modified to add a consideration in determining scheduled hours for families participating in the Kansas Early Head Start/Child Care Partnership program to indicate that all plans for the KEHS children will be written for 40 hours per week unless the referral form from the KEHS grantee indicates a need for a greater number of hours.
Hours for other children in the nuclear family who are not participating in this program but need child care are also assigned a specified number of hours, depending on the age and circumstances of the child.
- Termination of Child Care Plans – KEESM 7640 is being modified to list the situations in which child care cases may be closed prior to the end of the 12 month eligibility period, and situations in which a child care plan may be terminated.
- Households Required to Change Report – KEESM 9121 is being modified to reflect the change in the resource limit for child care, requiring households to report when their resources exceed $10,000.
- Frequency of Reviews – KEESM 9370 and 9374 are being modified to indicate that child care assistance review periods must always be set for 12 months. Section 9374 is also being modified to remove the reference to requiring a form ES-1627 every six months for SS Child Care. Also incorporated into this section is the new graduated phase out of assistance policy which allows three additional months of assistance if at review the family’s countable income exceeds 185 percent of the federal poverty level (FPL) but remains less than 85 percent of the state median income (SMI).
- Licensed Providers – KEESM 10021.1 is being modified to incorporate new requirements for authorizing child care assistance for children in Kansas Early Head Start whose parents are participating in the Kansas Early Head Start/Child Care Partnerships, and to incorporate the new requirement that child care plans be written for 12 months.
- Child Care Providers
- Licensing requirement – 10021.1 is being updated to reflect that preschools, summer camps and Head Start Programs must be licensed by KDHE to be enrolled as a DCF provider. Drop-in centers must be licensed as a Child Care Center or After School Program to be enrolled as a DCF provider. KEESM 10022 has been updated to reflect that out-of-state providers must be licensed in their state of residence to enroll as a DCF Provider. Special Purpose Centers for Sick Child Care, Extraordinary School Day Programs and Preschool-Age Programs have all been removed from the Unregulated Provider section as these programs must now be licensed by KDHE in order to be enrolled as a DCF provider.
- Food Assistance
- Work Registration Requirements – Each Food Assistance household member, ages 16-59, who is not exempt from work requirements is required to register for work. This change is being added as sub-item (2) in KEESM 3100.
- TANF and Child Care
- Failure to Cooperate with Fraud Investigation – KEESM 11221.2 is being updated to reflect that when an adult fails to cooperate with a TANF or child care fraud investigation, there is ineligibility for all members included on the program being investigated until cooperation has been established in the fraud investigation.
KEESM 3410 is being updated to reflect that there is not eligibility for work program support services for the 12 months after TANF closes due to failure to cooperate with a fraud investigation.
2165 is being updated to reflect that there is not eligibility for the mandatory filing unit when a parent fails to cooperate with CSS, even if he/she is disqualified due to failure to cooperate with a fraud investigation.
This requirement is being added as a bulleted item to the Your Responsibilities section of the ES-3100 and ES-3100r.
- CSS Failure to Cooperate– KEESM 2165 is being updated to clarify that the personal contact, which is required to be attempted before a child support non-cooperation penalty may be applied, may be completed by CSS as long as a form verifying this attempt is placed in the case file.
- TANF and Employment Services
- 24-Month Time Limit – The time limit is being changed from 36 to 24 months in the following KEESM sections: 1111, 1412.3, 2240, 2241, 2242, 2243, 2243.1, 2243.2, 2260.12, 3130.2, 3310.4, and 3410.
The ES-3100 and ES-3100r are being updated with this change in the Information About TANF Cash and Food Assistance Benefits section.
- Possible 36-month extention – KEESM sections 3310.4, and 3410 are being revised to reflect the possible TANF time limit extension to 36 months if a hardship is allowed.
- TANF Only Work Related Exemption for child under 2 months – KEESM section 3220 (4) is being updated to reflect that the child under two-month exemption may be used regardless of the number of TANF months received.
E-4 and forms ES-4305 and ES-4308 are also being updated to reflect the new time limits.
- Removal of KANSASWORKS Registration Requirement – Applicants are no longer required to register on KANSASWORKS and complete at least one KeyTrain module as a condition of eligibility for TANF.
The following KEESM sections are being updated to reflect this change: 2121, 2251, 3100, 3100.1, and 3130 .
- Completion of Self-Assessment Form – All TANF-mandatory work program clients are now required to complete the Self-Assessment form (E-6) as an eligibility criteria prior to the approval of TANF, unless the client is enrolled in Job Corps.
The following KEESM sections are being updated to reflect this change: 2121, 2251, 3100, 3100.1, 3130, and 3130.2.
- Completion of Online Employment Services Orientation Tutorial – All TANF mandatory work program clients are now required to complete the online Employment Services orientation tutorial prior to the approval of TANF unless they are enrolled in Job Corps or they require a translator to communicate in English. Clients who require a translator will be presented the information from the orientation individually as part of their work requirement after TANF approval.
The following KEESM sections are being updated to reflect this change: 2121, 2251, 3100, 3100.1, 3120, and 3130.
- School Enrollment – KEESM 1322.1 (13) and 2210 are being changed to clarify situations when verification of school enrollment may be postponed.
- Living with a Caregiver – KEESM 2220 has been changed to clarify that a relative within the fifth degree of kinship to the dependent child by marriage may be a qualifying caretaker.
- TANF Included Members – KEESM 4111 is being changed to clarify that any children of cohabiting boyfriends/girlfriends are mandated in the filing unit when living in the home.
- Job Search/Readiness (JSR) – Job Search/Readiness (JSR) is to be used when clients are participating in job search, not Applicant Job Search (AJS), as AJS in no longer a valid component.
KEESM section 3411 is being updated to reflect this change
FORMS (Explanation provided if not mentioned previously in this summary.)
ES-1610, Kansas Early Head Start Child Care Partnerships Referral for Child Care Assistance. This new form is being added for use by Kansas Early Head Start Grantees in referring families who are participating in the Kansas Early Head Start/Child Care Partnerships for child care assistance.
ES-4305, TANF Sample Cases Review Guides
ES-4308, Hardship Exemption Calculator
TANF and Child Care
ES-3100, Application for Benefits
ES-3100r, Review Form
APPENDIX (Explanation provided if not mentioned previously in this summary.)
C-27, EHS/Child Care Partnership Checklist, is being developed for staff to use as a guide for processing the EHS/Child Care Partnership cases.
F-1, Monthly Family Income and Family Share Deduction Schedule, is being updated to include a 12th level, 85 percent of the State Median Income (SMI), for use with graduated phase out provisions.
Child Care Providers
C-10, Child Care Provider Handbook, is being updated with the changes related to child care provider licensure changes in this revision.
E-26, Food Assistance Work Registration Requirements, is being added for food assistance clients who are not exempt from work requirements.
E-4, TANF 36-Month Limit Questions
MISCELLANEOUS FORMS (Explanation provided if not mentioned previously in this summary.)
All changes are effective July 1, 2016, unless specified otherwise in the implementation memo.
EFFECT ON LOCAL STAFF (No significant effect if not explained below.)
The child care changes listed will have a significant effect on local staff, as some eligibility requirements, processes and procedures are being changed with this revision. Staff will need to be vigilant in determining if reported household changes result in case closure, or if a case will need to remain open. Staff will also need to make certain that alerts are set in cases in which eligibility is extended for three months.
MATERIALS OBSOLETED BY THIS REVISION
This change was coordinated with staff in Economic and Employment Services, Executive leadership, and the EES Program Administrators.
Sandra Kimmons, EES Director
Economic and Employment Services