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U.S.

Department of
Health and Human Services
Temporary Assistance for Administration for Children & Families
Office of Family Assistance
Needy Families Program Office of Planning Research and Evaluation
Washington, D.C. 20447
Program Instruction

Transmittal No. TANF-ACF-PI-2000-5 Date: September 20, 2000

TO: State Agencies Administering the Temporary Assistance for Needy


Families (TANF) Program and Other Interested Parties.

SUBJECT: Formula for Awarding the High Performance Bonus (HPB) in Fiscal
Year 2001.

PURPOSE: The purpose of this Program Instruction (PI) is to advise States and
other interested parties of the rescission of the Food Stamp and
Medicaid program certification requirements the Department of Health
and Human Services (DHHS) specified in TANF-ACF-PI-99-5 for
making FY 2001 HPB awards.

BACKGROUND: Section 403(a)(4) of the Social Security Act makes $1 billion available
over a five-year period to reward States that achieve high performance
in meeting the purposes and goals of the TANF program. The formula
and measures for the first two years of the HPB awards (FY 1999 and
FY 2000) were issued via TANF-ACF-PI-98-1, TANF-ACF-PI 98-5,
and TANF-ACF-PI-99-1.

On December 6, 1999, we issued TANF-ACF-PI 99-5, which provided


the formula specifications for awarding the FY 2001 HPB. On the
same date we published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM)
addressing the FY 2002 and FY 2003 HPB awards. The proposed rule
included two measures that supported work and self-sufficiency, i.e.,
participation by low-income working families in the Food Stamp
Program and participation in the Medicaid and State Children’s Health
Insurance program (SCHIP) by families transitioning off TANF
assistance. In order to compete for bonuses for the Food Stamp and
Medicaid/SCHIP measures, we proposed that States meet certain
qualifying conditions and qualifying options associated with statutory
and regulatory requirements. To highlight the importance of the Food
Stamp and Medicaid programs in supporting and sustaining working
families prior to incorporation of these measures into the final HPB
rule, we included certification of compliance with certain statutory and
regulatory provisions in TANF-ACF-99-5 as requirements to compete
in any of the four work measures in the third bonus year, FY 2001.

For the Food Stamp Program, States were required to certify that they
had: (1) issued policies covering the opportunity to apply; (2) issued
policies specifying that applications are available upon request; (3)
complied with application processing time frames; and (4) taken steps
to prevent inappropriate denials and terminations. For Medicaid and
SCHIP, States were required to certify that they had: (1) issued policy
instructions clearly specifying that an individual must be given the
opportunity to apply for Medicaid; (2) issued appropriate notices and
evidence of entitlement to families losing eligibility under certain
circumstances; (3) issued policy instructions or regulations clearly
specifying that eligibility for Medicaid cannot be terminated until the
family has been determined not to be eligible under any other Medicaid
group; and (4) fulfilled all data requirements under the law.

We received a number of comments, in response to the HPB NPRM,


objecting to the qualifying conditions and qualifying options as
proposed for the Food Stamp and the Medicaid/SCHIP measures.
After carefully considering all of the comments received on the
qualifying conditions and qualifying options, we decided to delete them
from the final rule published on August 30, 2000. We have concluded
that monitoring and compliance efforts undertaken by the overseeing
Federal agencies and the States themselves are more appropriate
methods of ensuring compliance with the legal and regulatory
requirements that are basic to maintaining good program access for
working families. In addition, States that fail to meet them will likely
not perform well in the bonus competition.

INSTRUCTIONS: Consistent with our decision with regard to the HPB final rule, the
Food Stamp and Medicaid/SCHIP program certification requirements
for the FY 2001 HPB awards are rescinded. The other specifications in
TANF-ACF-PI-99-5 remain unchanged; i.e., the modified job retention
measure and the quarterly submittal dates.

EFFECTIVE DATE: Immediately

INQUIRIES For further information you should contact the appropriate HUB
Director/Regional Administrator.

/S/

Alvin C. Collins
Director
Office of Family Assistance

2
/S/

Howard Rolston
Director
Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation