M E M O R A N D U M
TO: EES Program Administrators
FROM: Sandra Kimmons
SUBJECT: Implementation Instructions - KEESM Revision #97
This memo provides implementation instructions and information for the following January 1, 2020, policy changes in the Kansas Economic and Employment Services Manual (KEESM).
- Food Assistance
- Homeless Shelter Expense – See Summary of Changes section III, A, 1, and KEESM 7226.6.
The Homeless Shelter Expense is updated annually with October changes. USDA definition of homeless is broader than individuals living on the street or in homeless shelters. The USDA definition is intended to capture those individuals who do not have a permanent residence, including those who are temporarily residing in someone else’s home.
Households in which all members are homeless my be allowed the Homeless Shelter Expense of $152. In order to receive the deduction, the household must incur or reasonably expect to incur any shelter or utility expense. Appropriate utility expenses are allowed. Homeless households that do not have shelter expenses during the month are not allowed the Homeless Shelter Expense. The household may choose to use actual expenses instead of the Homeless Shelter Expense if they believe their expenses exceed the $152 allowed. Homeless households which have free shelter or work for their shelter do not qualify for the Homeless Shelter Expense.
The case must have documentation to support the use of the Homeless Shelter Expense. If the expense is questionable verification is required. This expense must be considered for all applications, IRs, Reviews and changes received on or after January 18, 2020.
To indicate the Homeless Shelter Expense in KEES, select a Category of Homeless Shelter Expense from the Expense List page and a Type of Homeless Shelter Expense from the Expense Detail page. Staff do not need to enter an amount on the Expense Detail page as KEES will calculate the Homeless Shelter Expense when running EDBC.
Enter all expenses in KEES if the client has Shelter Expenses in addition to Homeless Shelter Expenses. KEES will determine if the total Shelter Costs is greater than the Homeless Shelter Expense when running EDBC.
Staff can view what deductions were used by clicking on the Excess Shelter Costs hyperlink from the Food Assistance EDBC Summary page. If the Homeless Shelter Expense was allowed, the description for the Homeless Shelter Expense Type will read Meets Homeless Criteria and list the deduction Amount. If the Homeless Shelter Expense was not allowed, the description for the Homeless Shelter Expense Type will read Does Not Meet Homeless Criteria and the Amount will be 0.
- Jim and his 4 children are homeless. Jim’s only income is his SSI. Sometimes they stay at a hotel, a shelter, and sometimes they sleep on the street. Client statement is acceptable, and the household is eligible for the Homeless Shelter Expense because of the charge to temporarily stay at the hotel.
- Sam is a homeless veteran and receives $600 per month in Veterans’ benefits. During the month he sometimes stays in a shelter for adult men and sometimes stays in his car. He pays the shelter usually for the first 6 days of every month after he receives his VA check. He is charged $20 per night. He spends the remainder of the month sleeping in his car. His shelter expense is $120. He has no other expenses. Sam is eligible for the Homeless Shelter Expense.
- Janet is homeless and is temporarily staying with a friend and is paying what she can to help with rent and utilities. She can get either the Homeless Shelter Expense or rent/utility expense, whichever is more beneficial.
- Ben and his wife are living in his car and pay $25 per month for a prepaid cellphone. They do not qualify for the Homeless Shelter Expense but may be allowed the Telephone Standard.
- A homeless family turns in their review and report they have been living in their car until their church paid for them to stay in a hotel for a week. Now they reside at a homeless shelter. This family does not qualify for the Homeless Shelter Expense because none of the household’s own money was used for shelter.
- Bethany is homeless she either sleeps in the street or couch surfs. She pays for her cell phone and no other shelter expenses. Bethany is not allowed the Homeless Shelter Expense but is allowed the telephone standard.
- Taylor and her daughter are staying with a friend in a tent at a “tent camp”. Her and her daughter take free showers at the local YMCA. Taylor has no shelter expenses. No shelter expense is allowed.
- A pregnant woman is living with a friend in her camper at the local camp ground. She pays her friend $20 per week for rent and for her cell phone. These are reasonable shelter expenses and the Homeless Shelter Expense may be allowed and the Telephone standard.
- Billy is living in a half way house and on work release. He is required to pay rent on a “sliding scale”. Billy has a hard time finding work but the income he does receive from work he pays a portion to the halfway house. The Homeless Shelter Expense is allowed.
- Julie reports she is homeless. She is working part time at a diner, and temporarily sleeping on her sisters couch. Julie is expected to pay her sister $200 monthly. Part of the payment ($50) is used towards use of the utilities which includes electricity for heating and cooling. Julie is eligible to use actual Rent expense of $150 and SUA.