NC Department of Health and Human Services Division

NC Department of Health and Human Services Division

NC Department of Health and Human Services Division of Social Services Economic & Family Services Division Cluster Meeting Operational Support Team October 2019 NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 1 Welcome and Introductions

NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 2 Economic and Family Services Updates and Reminders NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 3 The Work Number Usage DCD Letter issued in September concerning Work

Number Usage Administrative Letter EFS-FNSEP-11-2019 dated 2/7/2019 provided updates and guidance related to usage of The Work Number North Carolinas allowed usage for a six-month period is 625,000 billable hits Charged $3.22 overage fee for each additional hit Cost for overage passed down to individual counties Most information older than three months is not required to determine eligibility January 2019 to May 2019, 57% of the requests exceeded the three-month history selection NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

4 Energy Programs Federal Poverty Level increase for State Fiscal Year 2020 effective in NC FAST October 1, 2019 Policy sections 100, 200, 300 and 400 have been updated effective October 1, 2019 Please update the provider payments timely before entering the check number and date for federal reporting. Vendors need to be paid within thirty (30) days of information recorded Energy Program Work Group has been established. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

5 Food & Nutrition Services Updates Effective October 1, 2019, SNAP households who received $130 will decrease to $105 and households who received $70 will decrease to $65 Homeless Shelter Deduction (new policy) Census Income Exemption Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) Mass Change NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 6

Work First Updates Two-Parent Subsidized Employment Survey should have been completed in September Work First Policy Manual Sections 102 and 201 are being updated NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 7 Program Integrity

Program Integrity Timeliness Reports: Report EPI407 displays a summary of all open/ pending referrals. The EPI407 report shows each countys timeliness percentage Report EPI420 displays all open investigations without a Product Liability Case (PLC) and active PLCs assigned to an investigator. It shows all referrals ordered by program and then in order of status NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 8 Program Integrity Cont

https://policies.ncdhhs.gov/divisional/social-services/forms Workers need to make sure they are completing the DSS-1473 State Appeal Form AND the DSS 1473A (addendum) found at the above link This will always be the most current version of the form Also, county workers need to make sure they complete the location blank, so that the Hearings Officer knows the correct location to hold the

hearing NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 9 Program Integrity Cont Only check ONE block under the Program Type If an action by the county affects benefits in multiple programs and the client is appealing the action in each program, you must submit a separate State Appeal Request

form for each action NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 10 Program Integrity Cont The county workers should submit ALL necessary appeal documents (completed DSS-1473 and/or DSS-1473A along with the items listed at the bottom of page 1 of the DSS-1473) WITHIN 5 DAYS of the date of the appeal request for it to be timely The county should include copies of ALL documentation noted on page 2 of the DSS-1473A (Program Integrity) in order to allow the Hearing Officer to properly prepare for the hearing. This

documentation should also include relevant policy and an appeal summary NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 11 Program Integrity Cont Program Integrity MUST use this addendum in addition to submitting a DSS-1473 NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 12

Program Integrity Cont By Mail: Department of Health & Human Services Hearings & Appeals Section 2418 Mail Service Center Raleigh, NC 27699-2418 FAX: 919-715-1910 EMAIL: Send ALL emails through the DHHS ZixMail portal (Zix Secure Email Message Center) to: [email protected]

NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 13 Work First Participation Rates NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 14 North Carolina TANF Total Number of Recipients

March 2019 Total Recipients 22,079 December 2018 Total Recipients 23,333 December 2017 Total Recipients 27,038 OFA, Data & Reports NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

15 Two-Parent Work First Participation Rate NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 16 North Carolina TANF Total Number of Two-Parent Families March 2019

Total 20 December 2018 Total 21 December 2017 Total 55

OFA, Data & Reports NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 17 Two-Parent Work Participation Rate North Carolinas Two-Parent Participation Rate FFY 2018 29.6%

OFA, Data & Reports NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 18 Two-Parent Work Participation Rate Calculation Two-Parent Participation Rate Calculation: Numerator =The number of two-parent families receiving a Work First payment for the month in which required hours in federal work activities were completed Denominator = The number of two-parent families receiving a

Work First cash assistance payment for the month Work First Manual NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 19 Achieving the Two-Parent Work Participation Rate Both parents included in the case must be Work Eligible For a case to count in the numerator, the Work Eligible parents must participate in an average of 35 hours per week in federal countable work activities If the two-parent family is receiving federally funded

childcare, they must complete an average of 55 hours per week in federal countable work activities Counties must ensure at least 90% of all two-parent families complete the required number of hours in countable federal work activities Work First Manual NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 20 Achieving the Two-Parent Work Participation Rate Cont Case Management Best Practices

Work First application approval Help address immediate barriers Get the family into activities quickly Maintain frequent contact with the family Monitor progress Work First Manual NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

21 Knowledge Check 1. North Carolina is required to achieve a ______% Two-Parent Work Participation Rate. a. 35% b. 75% c. 90% d. 100% 2. What individuals are not considered work eligible for the purposes of the Work Participation Rates? a. Incapacitated Adults b. Individual Receiving Social Security Disability

c. Individuals Applying for Social Security d. Single Custodial Parents with Newborn Under 12 Months of Age Work First Manual NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 22 Work First and Working with Incapacitated or Disabled Individuals NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

23 Work Eligible Individuals With Physical Incapacitation or Disabled Exemption Evidence Are Not Removed From The Work Participation Rate (WPR) Work First Manual NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 24

Individuals With Disabilities ADA defines disability as a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits major life activities. Major physical or mental impairments include but are not limited to: visual, speech, and hearing impairments, mental retardation, emotional illness, specific learning disabilities, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, orthopedic conditions, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, tuberculosis, HIV Everyone with a disability must be afforded the opportunity to participate in or benefit from services in the Work First Program Agencies must take steps to ensure individuals with

disabilities can participate in all programs and services and are not limited to those designed solely for individuals with disabilities Work First Manual NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 25 Voluntary Disclosure An impairment is suspected and disclosure is voluntary; Screenings and other resources are available to identify the impairment; The benefits of identifying the impairment include

accommodations and services for those individuals with documented disabilities; If he/she chooses not to disclose a disability or cooperate with efforts to identify the disability, he/she may be required to participate with work activities without accommodations. Work First Manual NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 26 Case Scenario Susie Blank and her two children were approved for Work First. She stated she has not worked in two years

because she had back surgery and her doctor stated she cannot work. She stated she is applying for Social Security Disability. Keyed Outcome Plan activity for Susie to keep all scheduled doctors appointments and report changes to worker within ten days. Keyed Exemption Evidence Physical Incapacitation. Next appointment with worker November 9. (three months from application) NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 27 Discussion of Services & Referrals

Susie Blank and her two children were approved for Work First. She stated she has not worked in two years because she had back surgery and her doctor stated she cannot work. She stated she is applying for Social Security Disability. Keyed Outcome Plan activity for Susie to keep all scheduled doctors appointments and report changes to worker within ten days. Keyed Exemption Evidence Physical Incapacitation. Next appointment with worker November 9. (three months from application) NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 28

Summary of Services & Referrals Assessments and Screenings Purpose of Visit Screenings Available Programs and Services Work First, CIP, LIEAP, FNS, Medicaid and Adult Services Referrals Social Security Disability Verification to Show Application was Filed Report of Medical Examination (DSS 8655) and Follow-up Functional Capacity Evaluation Referral to Vocational Rehabilitation Work First Manual NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

29 Case Management Case Management is planning and directing the provision of, and/or directly providing services Includes keeping track of what has been provided and what can be provided in relation to the familys needs Work First Manual NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

30 Case Management Reminders Initial assessment and periodic reassessment of families needs and participants job readiness Examination of constructive ways to resolve workrelated and family-related issues

Mutually-developed strategies for self-sufficiency Identification of responsibilities of both participant and agency in facilitating the completion of plans Planning and monitoring a participants assigned activities Arranging and/or providing transportation Arranging childcare Work First Manual NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 31 Work First Monitoring

NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 32 Work First Program Monitoring Summary of Findings SFY 18-19 & Work First Program Tentative Schedule SFY 19-20 DCDL 8/7/2019 EFS-WF-07-2019

NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 33 Cash Assistance Monitoring Findings Audit/DAST-10 Screening completed at child only application and/or review DSS 8228 Application & Documentation Workbook incomplete Exemption Evidence physical incapacitation and/or disabled keyed prior to benefit issued Job Quit Penalty explained at child only application and/or review No notice issued at application to apply for Unemployment Insurance Benefits (UIB) No Child Support Enforcement referral completed One-year certification period at child only application 12-Month and/or 24-Month time Limit incorrect

NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 34 Cash Assistance Monitoring Findings Policy Sections The Audit/Dast-10 Screening is located in Work First Manual Section 104B. The substance use screening and testing does not apply to: Child only cases with a non-parent caretaker as the case head Dependent children Supplemental Security Income recipients Keying exemption evidence to adjust the 24-Month Time Limit for Incapacitation/Disabled participants:

Work First Manual Section 118, adjustments to the State 24-Month Time Limit occurs after benefit issued Job Quit Penalty Work First Manual Section 104, Job Quit Penalty. The Job Quit Penalty must be explained and documented for all work eligible adults at application NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 35 Cash Assistance Monitoring Findings Knowledge Check 1.

2. 3. 4. 5. What section of the Work First Policy Manual includes the Audit/Dast-10 Screening? Name the three categories the Audit/Dast-10 Screening does not apply to. When is exemption evidence applied to adjust the 24-Month Time Limit for an incapacitated individual? What is the appropriate certification period for a child only application? Fill in the blank. The Job Quit Penalty must be explained and documented for all ____ _____ _____ at application. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 36

Employment Services Monitoring Findings No work registration prior to beginning Job Search activity Job Search Logs incomplete DSS-6963B MRA Plan of Action not printed from NC FAST Communications Outcome Plan Activity not included on signed/printed DSS- 6963B Outcome Plan participation hours doesnt match Time Card DSS-5309 Federal Excused Absence Log not completed Fair Labor Standard Act (FLSA) calculation incorrect DSS-5298 Family Assessment of Strength & Needs not signed and/or completed timely NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

37 Employment Services Monitoring Findings Policy Sections Work First Manual Section 118, Work Registration Requirements Registration for work with NC Works is a prerequisite to participation in the Job Search component of Work First Employment Services Work First Manual Section 118, The MRA-Plan of Action (MRA-B) An MRA-B must be printed from the NC FAST Communications Tab whenever an Outcome Plan is created or revised by the caseworker Work First Manual Section 118, Work Experience FLSA Formula

WFFA payment (current IV D support orders) + FNS allotment / Federal or State Minimum Wage (whichever is greater) Work First Manual Section 118, Reporting Participation Document the dates and reasons for excused absences on the Excused Absence Log, DSS 5309, and maintain the log in the case record NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 38 Employment Services Monitoring Knowledge Check 1.

2. 3. 4. Registration for work with NC Works is a _______ to participation in the Job Search component of Work First Employment Services. An MRA-B must be _____ from the NC FAST Communication tab whenever an _____ ____ is created or revised by the caseworker. What is the formula for the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)? The DSS-5309 is used to document the reasons for _____ ______ absences. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 39 Work First Services Monitoring

Findings IEG Work First Services Application not keyed in NC FAST DSS-5027 not signed by applicant, Section C not completed, not closed in SIS, and/or not closed in NC FAST No documentation of resources at application Using outdated DSS-8225 DSS-5327 Learning Needs Screening Tool (LNST) not offered DSS-5330 Learning Needs Screening Tool Waiver not signed NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

40 Work First Services Monitoring Findings Policy Sections IEG findings, Administrative Letter 3-2016 Counties that are providing Work First Services at 200% of the Federal Poverty Level are required to process services in the NC FAST system. DSS-5027 findings, Administrative Letter 2-2016 and SIS Manual II B & III The application for WFS is the DSS-5027. Complete the appropriate sections and provide the applicant with a copy of the notice. Instructions for completing the DSS5027 are in the Services Information System Manual. DSS-5327 and 5330 findings, Administrative Letter 13-2010

Caseworkers must offer the DSS-5327, Learning Needs Screening Tool (LNST) to all Work First applicant (including child only cases). Caseworkers must explain and have the applicant or participant sign the DSS 5330, LNST waiver in the individual agrees or declines to complete the LNST. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 41 IVD Non-Cooperation Monitoring Findings Non-cooperation with Child Support Enforcement and no Sanction applied to case DSS-8110 adequate notice not sent

NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 42 IV D Non-Cooperation Monitoring Findings Policy Sections Non-Cooperation with child support enforcement and sanction, WF Manual Section 103 IV; Section 116 IX; Section 120 II and Admin Letter 7-2009 A sanction must be imposed when a caretaker fails for cooperate with Child Support Enforcement for the children for which they are receiving cash assistance. DSS-8110 adequate notice not sent, Section 116 IX, Administrative Letter 32014 Revision of the MRA-A in 2014 which included the verbiage, The statement will serve

as a familys timely notice. Generate the adequate notice (DSS-8110). The DSS8110 must state the reason for the sanction. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 43 Work First Reminders Use Updated DSS Forms to Prevent Monitoring Findings DSS-8219 Consent for Release of Confidential Information, Rev. 8-2019 DSS-8224 Referral to Qualified Professional in Substance Abuse, Rev. 8-2019 DSS-8108 Notice of Benefits, Rev. 7-2019 DSS-8109 Your Application for Benefits is Being Denied or

Withdrawn, Rev. 7-2019 DSS-8110 Your Benefits are Changing, Rev. 8-2019 Drug Testing Portal Log-in to Drug Testing Portal every 30 days to prevent being locked out and the need to be reset. Work First Manual NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 44 Work First Top Questions NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

45 Substance Use Testing Scenario: We have a client applying for Benefit Diversion who completely failed the Audit/DAST-10 and we are trying to arrange drug testing. The client states she has to do a drug test with her psychiatrist anyway, can we use that one or does it need to be through i3screen? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 46

Substance Use Testing Answer: Benefit Diversion is considered a short term service intended to divert individuals from ongoing cash assistance. Substance Use policy is only applicable for individuals who are applying for or receiving Work First cash assistance. Testing at another facility has no bearing on the Work First application. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 47

Substance Use Testing & Sanctions Scenario: Audit DAST-10 was conducted and the applicant scored a four (4) on the DAST. The client was referred to substance use testing. The client did not show for testing and withdrew the application on the same day. Is a no-show for the testing treated as a positive? Do we need to sanction the applicant? How do we do this at application? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 48

Substance Use Testing & Sanctions Answer: Being a no-show does not equate to a positive result. However, if the individual is work eligible they would continue to be work eligible If the agency is unable to determine good cause then a sanction must be imposed for the individual who failed to comply Instructions regarding keying a sanction can be found in the Creating a Sanction Job Aid NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 49

Sanction at Recertification Scenario: Child only case was due for recertification and the case head failed to provide physical forms. The case head came in before the end of the month to complete the recertification but the doctors appointment wasnt able to be scheduled, and provide verification, until after the certification period ended. Since the agency was unable to verify all aspects of the MRA-A should the agency impose a penalty month? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

50 Sanction at Recertification Answer: Is the agency able to establish Good Cause on the behalf of the caretaker? If good cause is established the agency may make the determination to not impose a penalty month. This should be CLEARLY documented in the narrative. If good cause not established, a sanction must be applied and carried out. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

51 Who to Include in the Assistance Unit Scenario: Childs grandmother has legal custody and the biological mother has returned to the home. Since the grandmother has legal custody, do we have to add the mother to the case? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 52

Who to Include in the Assistance Unit Answer: The parent must be included in the case with the child if they live in the home. Unless the parents legal rights have been terminated. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 53 Child Support Sanctions Scenario:

The case head non-cooperated with child support on August 21st and then cooperated on August 28th. Do we enter a sanction and terminate the case or are they okay because they cooperated within a ten day notice? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 54 Child Support Sanctions Answer: If the case head non-cooperates with child support for one day in the month they have created a sanction for

their case and are required to miss one payment. For WFB cases, the sanction month is the month they non-cooperated due to pay after performance requirements. For Child only cases, the effective date is the following month because the payment for the sanction month has already been issued. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 55 Time Remaining 15

10 05 14 13 12 Time 09 08 07 is Up

04 NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 03 02 11 06 01 56 Developing Excellent

Interviewing Skills NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 57 Policy Requirement FNS Section 310 Work First Section 101-Initial Screening Section 104-Application Interview Section 117-Ongoing Interviews

Energy Section 135- Outlines Rights Section 300-Fraud prevention and supporting application processing Section 400-Various interview methods used to support the initial application NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 58 Purpose of Interviewing Allow clients to tell their story Discuss agency benefits and requirements Determine eligibility

Resolve clients questions Educate clients NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 59 Client Interactions Empathy Communication Professionalism Sensitivity Tactfulness

NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 60 Key Points People react differently Recognize barriers Attitudes towards authority Some individuals require more time Clients may not openly reveal a disability or limitation Vary communication methods NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

61 Interview Preparation Know your material Review the questions Prepare your interview space Clarify the purpose of the interview Have all necessary paperwork and forms for the interview close at hand Clear your head Dont count on your memory NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

62 Introduction and Greeting Exercise courtesy Be aware of verbal and non verbal cues Welcome and introductions Explain the process Client centered focus Privacy, confidentiality, and responsibilities for all involved NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 63

Role Play NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 64 Open-Ended Interview Questions Advantages: Encourage more client participation Provide more complete explanation of answers Gather more information Customer centered Disadvantages: Longer answers which may take more time

Rely on the clients priorities Irrelevant information NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 65 Important Reminders Active Listening Ensures understanding Restate questions Avoid jargon No assumptions

Listen NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 66 Lunch NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 67 Energy Programs Top Questions

NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 68 LIEAP Client Has Credit with Vendor Scenario: Client has a credit from LIEAP on their vendor account. They have moved from the residence. Can the credit be transferred to the new vendor who will be the primary heat source at the new residence or will these funds need to be returned to DSS?

NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 69 LIEAP Client Has Credit with Vendor Answer: Settlement of the credit is between the household and the energy provider. The provider can forward the credit balance to the new energy provider. If the provider is unable to contact the household, the DSS is responsible for trying to locate the household. If the DSS is unable to locate the household, the credit balance should be returned to the local DSS agency. The local DSS agency will return the funds to the Controllers

Office via the DSS-1571 and notify DSS Automation at 919527-6270 to credit the countys funds in NC FAST. Clients are not allowed to receive a refund from providers. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 70 CIP Invoice Different from Bill Scenario: Client applies for CIP with a Disconnect Notice from their heating vendor with $200 required to prevent disconnection. When the invoice is received, the amount listed is $213.51. How do I handle this?

NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 71 CIP Invoice Different from Bill Answer: It is not uncommon to go back and edit the CIP crisis amount especially for gas or oil vendors. When the invoice is returned with a different amount, adjust the payment amount in NC FAST to reflect the accurate payment amount. Then follow the process to put the application on a payment request once the invoice is received for the actual amount.

NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 72 Limits to CIP Funding Sources Scenario: Based on the needs of the CIP applicant, can the client receive $600 in CIP funds and an additional $600 from non-federal CIP funding sources (Progress Energy Neighbor, Duke Share the Warmth, Wake Electric Round Up or Haywood Helping Each Member Cope)? Or is it $600 per year no matter which funding source

helps the client? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 73 Limits to CIP Funding Sources Answer: Counties can use more than one funding source to alleviate the crisis. Note that the non-federal CIP funds will be pulled first before the CIP funds are used. So a client could receive $600 from the non-federal CIP funding source and $600 from CIP. Once those funds are used for

the state fiscal year, there is no more CIP assistance available to the client. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 74 Energy Programs Best Practices NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 75

FNS Top Questions NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 76 ABAWD Free and Bonus Months Scenario: Patty O Furniture reapplied for FNS on 5/2/2019 and is not working Received 3 ABAWD Free Months 1/2019-3/2019 as a Non-Compliant ABAWD Provided verification that she worked 89 hours

with a Temporary Agency in March 2019 and 10 hours in February Is the client eligible for Bonus Months? SOURCE: NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 77 ABAWD Free and Bonus Months Answer: The client is not eligible for Bonus Months Worker should recode March because the client had 80 hours of credible activity Entering Exemption Evidence for March, gives client back

one Non-Compliant ABAWD month May 2019 is a prorated month, so is not an ABAWD month June 2019 is last free ABAWD month Client may become eligible for Bonus Months after receiving the last free month if meets criteria NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 78 Calculating Child Support Income Scenario: London Bridge applies for FNS on 9/12/2019 for herself and her 2 minor children

She is employed and provides her base period check stubs She receives child support through IVD for one of the children. The base period child support is 6/15/2019 - $250, 7/15/2019 - $250, 8/15/2019 - $363 What child support income would you count? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 79 Calculating Child Support Income Answer: Evaluate the base period income for a pattern

Disregard payments that are not representative Document clearly what action is taken to determine the countable child support If the $250 payments are representative, count it ongoing and disregard the $363. Document! Document! Document! NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 80 How to Count School Employees Income Scenario: Suzy Que applies for FNS on 6/9/2019 after

school lets out for summer break stating she is out of work for the summer. She is employed by the county school system as a Teacher Assistant. She is a contract employee making $28,000 gross income annually. She does not receive any pay during the summer break. How do you count her income? SOURCE: NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 81 How to Count School Employees Income Answer:

Contract employees are generally teachers and administration, but also includes teachers assistants in some school systems. Contract income is considered annualized income, so you divide it by 12. The result is the amount that is counted each month of the year for which it is intended. $28,000 gross income/12 months = $2333.33 per month NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 82 DSS-8650 Requirement at Application Scenario:

Jack Spratt applied for FNS on 9/9/2019. He screened eligible for expedited services DSS-8650 issued for required verifications DSS-8650 expired without applicant returning any verifications Does the worker send a 2nd DSS-8650 for this application? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 83 DSS-8650 Requirement at Application Answer: No, the worker does not need to send a 2 nd

DSS-8650 for this application. Administrative Letter 07-2017 provided policy that the requirement for a 2nd DSS-8650 for applications only applies to FNS applications and reapplications that are NOT eligible for expedited services. Apply this policy to all FNS applications and reapplications that are subject to normal processing. SOURCE: NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 84 DSS-8650 Requirement at Recertification

Scenario: FNS household certification period ends 9/30/2019 Timely DSS-2435 SR returned by 9/15/2019. Worker attempts but is unable to reach household by phone for an interview DSS-8650 issued to schedule the required interview Can the worker request other required verifications on the DSS-8650? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 85

DSS-8650 Requirement at Recertification Answer: Yes, the worker can request other required verifications on the DSS-8650? USDA has recently provided updated guidance that other required verification can be requested on the DSS-8650 when requesting an interview for FNS recertifications. This does not apply to applications or reapplications. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 86 Time Remaining

15 10 05 14 13 12 Time 09 08

07 is Up 04 NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 03 02 11 06 01 87

Reducing FNS Errors NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 88 Case and Procedural Error Rate (CAPER) Quality Control (QC) reviews negative actions Reflects negatively on program access and the States participation rate Current reported CAPER Error Rate is 44.19% for Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 2019

NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 89 CAPER Cont Incorrect Notice Notice Not Provided Incomplete/Incorrect 8650 Unnecessary Info Req App Denied Before 30th Day Interview Appt Not Scheduled Misapplication of ABAWD Policy

Incomplete Notice Unclear Notice Verification Provided HH Not Given 10 Days Case Closure Time Standard Incorrect Denial No Supporting Documentation Notice Mailed to Wrong Address 8650 Not Provided Unclear 8650 App Denied After 30th Day Incorrect Denial

Misapplication of Policy Incomplete Notice SOURCE: Quality Control Summary Report March 2019 NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 90 Alternative to Checking DSS-8551 Next Day Step 1 Worker processes case in NC FAST Step 2 Go to the Income Support Details Tab NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

91 Alternative to Checking DSS-8551 Next Day Cont Step 3 Go to Communications Tab and Select New Pro Forma to generate the DSS-8551 NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 92 Alternative to Checking DSS-8551 Next Day Cont Step 4 Review Pro Forma for accuracy If Pro Forma is correct, print, mark sent in NC FAST

and mail the DSS-8551 If Pro Forma is incorrect, review evidence on the Evidence Dashboard and correct If evidence is corrected, cancel incorrect Pro Forma and generate a new notice. Review for accuracy. If the evidence is correct and notice is incorrect, cancel the notice, submit a Help Desk Ticket and complete a manual notice. Document in NC FAST and mail to household NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

93 Categorical Eligible Categorically eligible (CE) refers to Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) households who are exempt from meeting the resource and gross and net income limits. Verification of residency and enumeration not required after a case is CE. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 94

Categorical Eligible (CE) Five Types of CE cases: Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and/or Work First Family Assistance (WFFA) Households Work First Employment Services Households SSI Households At least one member of the FNS unit receives 200% Services 200% Expanded Categorically Eligible Households NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 95

Categorical Eligible (CE) Cont 200% Expanded Categorically Eligible Households must meet ALL three of the following criteria: 1. Household income under 200% of the Federal Poverty Income Limit 2. FNS unit doesnt contain any disqualified individuals 3. Notice of TANF funded services is provided to the FNS unit NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 96

Categorical Eligible (CE) Evidence at Application Important!!!! Remove the CE indicator when denying FNS applications Quality Control (QC) must go by what has been entered in NC FAST NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 97 Small Group Activity

NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 98 Application Example 1 DOA 4/9/2019. Not eligible for Expedited Services DSS-8650 issued requesting verification of rent, residency and income Application denied on 30th day for failure to provide information with CE indicator remaining Is this notice invalid or incorrect? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

99 Application Example 1 Answer: Invalid This is an invalid notice because proof of income was not included The procedure would be cited as invalid rather than incorrect because unnecessary information was requested (verification of residency for CE households) The action is also invalid because unnecessary information was requested NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019

100 Application Example 2 DOA 4/9/2019. Not eligible for Expedited Services DSS-8650 issued requesting verification of income Application denied on 30th day for failure to provide information with CE indicator remaining Is this notice invalid or incorrect? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 101

Application Example 2 Answer: Correct While this application is showing CE incorrectly, QC would not call the notice or action invalid because it did not include proof of residency NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 102 Application Example 3 Scenario: DOA 3/11/2019. Applicant quit job to care for sick parent in

February. Not eligible for Expedited Services Non CE household of applicant, minor child and elderly parent DSS-8650 issued on DOA requesting proof of residency, verification of last day worked and last pay and proof of rent DSS-8650 second request issued 3/22/2019 Application denied 4/10/2019 Is this an incorrect or invalid notice? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 103 Application Example 3 Answer: Incorrect

The notice is incorrect because it lists information that was not requested. The DSS8650 does not request information regarding Voluntary Quit. In this example, the worker failed to update voluntary quit in NCFAST on the evidence dashboard, therefore it was included on the notice. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 104 Recertification Example 1 Recertification DOA 3/6/2019 Case is 5 person CE household

DSS-8650 issued requesting verification of residency and earned income Is this notice invalid or incorrect? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 105 Recertification Example 1 Answer: Correct The denial reason on the notice is correct because it matches the workers reason for denial However, this notice is incorrect because it

states FNS unit has until the 60th day to provide verification for a reopen Case would be cited invalid because unnecessary verification of residency was requested. Residency is not required for CE households at recertification NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 106 Recertification Example 2 Timely recertification 3/6/2019 Case is 3 person CE household DSS-8650 issued requesting interview and earned

income Denied recert on 3/29/2019 for failure to provide verification Is this notice invalid or incorrect? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 107 Recertification Example 2 Answer: Incorrect This is an incorrect notice because a Notice of Missed Interview (NOMI) was not provided.

When denying a recertification for failure to interview, the reason must be included on the notice in order for the FNS household to receive a NOMI This notice is also incorrect because it states FNS unit has until the 60th day to provide verification for a reopen NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 108 Recertification Example 3 Timely Recertification received 3/13/2019 1 person CE FNS unit

ABAWD free months 1/2019-3/2019 New Hire Match for Bojangles in February 2019 DSS-8650 issued requesting earned income Automatic Hold in NCFAST 3/29/2019 Is this notice invalid or incorrect? NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 109 Recertification Example 3 Answer: Invalid This notice is invalid. It is an incomplete notice because it does not provide a reason for the

recertification denial. While the worker requested the correct information and the policy procedures were followed, the failure to remove the Automatic Hold in NCFAST resulted in an unclear notice. NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 110 Active Error Rate QC reviews sample of active cases participating in the FNS program QC verifies:

Was the correct allotment amount issued? Was the application processed timely (APT)? Was the recertification processed timely (RPT)? Data is provided to Federal QC to calculate the States Payment Error, APT and RPT rates NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 111 Active Error Rate Cont Failure to Act on Reported or Known Information

Data Entry and Math Errors Misapplication of Policy Failure to Verify Information SOURCE: FNS QC Summary Report March 2019 NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 112 Reportable Changes FNS households subject to Simplified Reporting (SR) are required to report if one of the following changes occurs during the certification period:

1. ABAWD stops working an average of 80 hours per month 2. Households whose income is at or below the 130% maximum allowable gross income limit are required to report an increase in income that causes it to exceed the 130% maximum limit NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 113 Reportable Changes Cont FNS unit is required to report changes by the 10th of the month following the month of change

For applications, changes must be reported by the 10th of the month, following the month in which the Notice of Eligibility is received NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 114 Reportable Changes Cont County DSS agencies are required to react to all changes recorded in NCFAST County DSS agencies are required to react to all changes reported to the FNS worker from all programs/units within DSS regardless of the

impact to the FNS allotment NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 115 Known to the Agency Changes are Considered Known to the Agency on the: Date the Change Report is Received Date the change is reported by phone, email, or fax Date of the office visit to report the change

NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 116 Known to the Agency Cont Date the change is reported to Work First Date the changed information is entered in NC FAST and a task is originated Date the change is reported from a third party NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 117

Questions & Answers NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 118 [email protected] NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 119 Thank you!

Safe travels! NCDHHS, Division | OST Cluster Meeting | October 2019 120

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