HB2020 Creates the Missouri Works Program in the Department of Social Services for welfare recipients.
Sponsor: Gunn, Russell (70) Effective Date:00/00/0000
CoSponsor: Hollingsworth, Katherine (101) LR Number: 4501L.01I
Last Action: COMMITTEE: SOCIAL SERVICES, MEDICAID AND THE ELDERLY
03/27/2000 - Reported Do Pass (H)
HB2020
Next Hearing:Hearing not scheduled
Calendar:Bill currently not on calendar
ACTIONS HEARINGS CALENDAR
BILL SUMMARIES BILL TEXT
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Available Bill Summaries for HB2020 Copyright(c)
* Committee * Introduced

Available Bill Text for HB2020
* Introduced *

BILL SUMMARIES

COMMITTEE

HB 2020 -- PUBLIC ASSISTANCE

CO-SPONSORS:  Gunn, Hollingsworth, Hilgemann, Gambaro, Thompson
(72)

COMMITTEE ACTION:  Voted "do pass" by the Committee on Social
Services, Medicaid and the Elderly by a vote of 9 to 6.

Existing law requires the Department of Social Services to
complete an individualized assessment of the skills, work
experience, and employability of each public assistance
recipient who is age 18 or older or who has not completed high
school or its equivalent and is not attending secondary school.
This bill requires the department to use the assessment to
develop a self-sufficiency pact for these recipients.  In
addition, the bill requires that individuals who are subject to
work activity requirements but who face severe or multiple
barriers to work activity participation be placed in a separate
state program which includes activities appropriate to their
circumstances and services designed to remove these barriers.
These individuals' benefits are to be funded from state
maintenance of effort (MOE) funds until completion of the
program, at which time the recipients' benefits are to be funded
from federal temporary assistance for needy families (TANF)
funds.  The bill also requires, rather than allows, the
department to promulgate reasonable and necessary rules to
implement these provisions.

The bill establishes the Missouri Works Program as a pilot
project in 3 sites throughout the state, designed to provide
community service jobs for 1,000 TANF recipients per month.  The
program's purpose is to enhance the employability of public
assistance recipients and help them secure permanent,
unsubsidized employment.  The program is to target those
recipients who are likely to reach their welfare expiration
limits without securing unsubsidized employment.  The department
is to select both urban and rural areas as pilot sites and is to
give preference to localities offering to provide welfare-to--
work funds, local funds, or grant funding for the program.  Each
site is to create at least 100 community service positions in
public and not-for-profit agencies.

Federal TANF funds, state MOE funds, federal welfare-to-work
grant moneys, and other grants are to be used to fund the
Missouri Works Program.  The department is to contract with at
least one independent not-for-profit agency in each pilot area
for services for program participants, including case
management, employability assessment, job readiness, and
placement in a community service position.

Recipients employed in community service positions are to work
20 hours per week for up to 12 months.  These positions must pay
a wage at least equal to the federal minimum wage.  The
department is to encourage recipients to take advantage of the
earned income tax credit.  In addition to their wages, program
participants will receive a stipend of $90 per month for work--
related expenses; participants are eligible to receive
subsidized child care and a TANF grant equal to the difference
between their gross wages and the grant amount they would
otherwise be eligible for, if their wages are less than the TANF
grant.  Participants are considered employees of the contracting
organization for the purposes of all state and federal
employment laws and are to receive the same level of vacation
and other benefits as similarly employed employees who are not
program participants.  The bill also requires the department to
provide, subject to available funding, bonus payments to
participants who obtain and remain employed in an unsubsidized
employment for a designated period of time following their
program participation.

FISCAL NOTE:  Estimated Net Cost to General Revenue Fund of
$3,793,967 in FY 2001, $7,838,365 in FY 2002, and $8,179,261 in
FY 2003.

PROPONENTS:  Supporters say that recipients of public assistance
can become self-reliant only when severe barriers to self--
sufficiency are addressed and minimized.

Testifying for the bill were Representative Gunn; Legal Services
of Eastern Missouri; Reform Organization of Welfare; Lutheran
Family and Children's Services; Siobhan Martin; Paraquad; and
Professor David Tuschocus.

OPPONENTS:  There was no opposition voiced to the committee.

Debra Cheshier, Senior Legislative Analyst


INTRODUCED

HB 2020 -- Public Assistance

Co-Sponsors:  Gunn, Hollingsworth, Hilgemann, Gambaro, Thompson
(72)

Existing law requires the Department of Social Services to
complete an individualized assessment of the skills, work
experience, and employability of each public assistance
recipient who is age 18 or older or who has not completed high
school or its equivalent and is not attending secondary school.
This bill requires the department to use the assessment to
develop a self-sufficiency pact for these recipients.  In
addition, the bill requires that individuals who are subject to
work activity requirements but who face severe or multiple
barriers to work activity participation be placed in a separate
state program which includes activities appropriate to their
circumstances and services designed to remove these barriers.
These individuals' benefits are to be funded from state
maintenance of effort (MOE) funds until completion of the
program, at which time the recipients' benefits are to be funded
from federal temporary assistance for needy families (TANF)
funds.  The bill also requires, rather than allows, the
department to promulgate reasonable and necessary rules to
implement these provisions.

The bill establishes the Missouri Works Program as a pilot
project in 3 sites throughout the state, designed to provide
community service jobs for 1,000 TANF recipients per month.  The
program's purpose is to enhance the employability of public
assistance recipients and help them secure permanent,
unsubsidized employment.  The program is to target those
recipients who are likely to reach their welfare expiration
limits without securing unsubsidized employment.  The department
is to select both urban and rural areas as pilot sites and is to
give preference to localities offering to provide welfare-to--
work funds, local funds, or grant funding for the program.  Each
site is to create at least 100 community service positions in
public and not-for-profit agencies.

Federal TANF funds, state MOE funds, federal welfare-to-work
grant moneys, and other grants are to be used to fund the
Missouri Works Program.  The department is to contract with at
least one independent not-for-profit agency in each pilot area
for services for program participants, including case
management, employability assessment, job readiness, and
placement in a community service position.

Recipients employed in community service positions are to work
20 hours per week for up to 12 months.  These positions must pay
a wage at least equal to the federal minimum wage.  The
department is to encourage recipients to take advantage of the
earned income tax credit.  In addition to their wages, program
participants will receive a stipend of $90 per month for work--
related expenses; participants are eligible to receive
subsidized child care and a TANF grant equal to the difference
between their gross wages and the grant amount they would
otherwise be eligible for, if their wages are less than the TANF
grant.  Participants are considered employees of the contracting
organization for the purposes of all state and federal
employment laws and are to receive the same level of vacation
and other benefits as similarly employed employees who are not
program participants.  The bill also requires the department to
provide, subject to available funding, bonus payments to
participants who obtain and remain employed in an unsubsidized
employment for a designated period of time following their
program participation.


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