S. 1823 (104th): Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Act of 1996

Introduced:
May 24, 1996 (104th Congress, 1995–1996)
Status:
Died (Reported by Committee)
Sponsor
Robert Dole
Senator from Kansas
Party
Republican
Text
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Last Updated
May 24, 1996
Length
775 pages
 
Status

This bill was introduced on May 24, 1996, in a previous session of Congress, but was not enacted.

Progress
Introduced May 24, 1996
Reported by Committee May 24, 1996
 
Full Title

A bill to restore the American family, enhance support and work opportunities for families with children, reduce out-of-wedlock pregnancies, reduce welfare dependence by requiring work, control welfare spending, and increase State flexibility.

Summary

No summaries available.

Cosponsors
none
 
Primary Source

THOMAS.gov (The Library of Congress)

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Notes

S. stands for Senate bill.

A bill must be passed by both the House and Senate in identical form and then be signed by the president to become law.

The bill’s title was written by its sponsor.

GovTrack’s Bill Summary

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Library of Congress Summary

The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress.


5/24/1996--Introduced.
TABLE OF CONTENTS:
Title I - Block Grants for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Title II: Supplemental Security Income Subtitle A: Eligibility Restrictions Subtitle B: Benefits for Disabled Children Subtitle C: State Supplementation Programs Subtitle D: Studies Regarding Supplemental Security Income Program Subtitle E: National Commission on the Future of Disability Subtitle F: Retirement Age Eligibility Title III: Child Support Subtitle A: Eligibility for Services; Distribution of Payments Subtitle B: Locate and Case Tracking Subtitle C: Streamlining and Uniformity of Procedures Subtitle D: Paternity Establishment Subtitle E: Program Administration and Funding Subtitle F: Establishment and Modification of Support Orders Subtitle G: Enforcement of Support Orders Subtitle H: Medical Support Subtitle I: Enhancing Responsibility and Opportunity for Non-Residential Parents Subtitle J: Effective Dates and Conforming Amendments Title IV: Restricting Welfare and Public Benefits for Aliens Subtitle A: Eligibility for Federal Benefits Subtitle B: Eligibility for State and Local Public Benefits Programs Subtitle C: Attribution of Income and Affidavits of Support Subtitle D: General Provisions Subtitle E: Conforming Amendments Subtitle F: Earned Income Credit Denied to Unauthorized Employees Title V: Reductions in Federal Government Positions Title VI: Reform of Public Housing Title VII: Child Protection Block Grant Programs and Foster Care, Adoption Assistance, and Independent Living Programs Subtitle A: Child Protection Block Grant Program and Foster Care, Adoption Assistance, and Independent Living Programs Subtitle B: Child and Family Services Block Grant Title VIII: Child Care Title IX: Child Nutrition Programs Subtitle A: National School Lunch Act Subtitle B: Child Nutrition Act of 1966 Title X: Food Stamps and Commodity Distribution Subtitle A: Food Stamp Program Subtitle B: Commodity Distribution Programs Title XI: Miscellaneous Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Act of 1996
Title I - Block Grants for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
Expresses the sense of the Congress that prevention of out-of-wedlock pregnancy and reduction in out-of-wedlock births are important Government interests.
Section 103 -
Replaces the current Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) program and the Job Opportunities and Basic Skills Training Program (JOBS) under parts A and F of title IV of the Social Security Act (SSA) with a single, combined program of block grants to the States for operating statewide temporary assistance (TEA) programs with certain mandatory work, education, and job preparation requirements for needy families either already with or expecting a child, which are designed to assist such families in becoming self-sufficient.
Limits such families generally to no more than five years of TEA cash assistance, with certain exceptions for minor children, battered family members, and hardship situations.
Denies TEA assistance in cases where an individual family member is a fugitive felon or a probation or parole violator and in certain other specified situations as well.
Requires, in addition, certain adult-supervised living arrangements for unmarried teenage parents.
Provides for the exchange of TEA program information with law enforcement agencies under certain conditions.
Establishes penalties for States and individual families for specified grant and program violations, respectively, through reduced grants and assistance payments, allowing States to terminate such payments to certain adult family members without small children needing child care who refuse to:
(1) engage in work, educational, or job preparation activities (required program activities); or
(2) cooperate with the State in establishing paternity or obtaining child support unless the member qualifies for a good cause exception.
Provides for a separate reduction in State family assistance grant payments for States failing to comply with Federal requirements under SSA title IV part D (Child Support and Establishment of Paternity) pertaining to paternity establishment and child support enforcement.
Sets forth the mechanism for State appeal of Federal adverse decisions with respect to State plans or imposition of penalties, providing for advance notification of any program violation and the opportunity for a State to correct it before any such penalty is imposed.
Limits the amount of any penalty reduction in the State's quarterly family assistance grant payment.
Expresses the sense of the Congress that State TEA programs should:
(1) assign the highest priority to requiring adults in two-parent families and in single-parent families with older preschool or school-age children to be engaged in required program activities; and
(2) require noncustodial, nonsupporting parents under age 18 to fulfill community work obligations and attend appropriate parenting or money management classes after school.
Specifies State TEA plan contents, including provisions for numeric goals for reducing illegitimacy in the State over a specified ten year period beginning in 1996, and certain certifications by the State that it will operate child support enforcement and protection programs, in order for it to be eligible (according to certain other criteria as well) to receive Federal grants for its TEA programs (family assistance grants).
Allows the States to decide in their TEA plans:
(1) whether or not they intend on providing TEA assistance to aliens; and
(2) how to treat families moving interstate.
Provides for:
(1) the allowable uses of quarterly family assistance grants, family planning services, and assistance to low income households in meeting home heating and cooling costs;
(2) additional grants to States as rewards for reductions in illegitimate births and for high performance under the TEA program, as well as supplemental grants to certain States for population increases; and
(3) a Contingency Fund for State Welfare Programs (Contingency Fund) in the Treasury for payments to certain eligible States. Makes appropriations for such grants and the Contingency Fund. Sets up a Federal loan program for State TEA programs for anti-fraud and other specified activities, making necessary appropriations.
Outlines specific program data collection and reporting requirements, as well as certain research, evaluation, and study requirements.
Provides for direct funding, by way of three-year tribal family assistance grants, to Indian tribes (with a special rule for Indian tribes in Alaska) with approved tribal family assistance plans.
Directs the Bureau of the Census to expand the Survey of Income and Program Participation to obtain information that will enable interested persons to evaluate the impact of the changes made by this title on a random national sample of recipients of assistance under State programs.
Provides for the treatment of existing State AFDC (welfare reform) waivers in effect on the date of enactment of this Act and those granted subsequently.
Retains the Assistant Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) for Family Support as the official responsible for administering SSA title IV part A and D programs.
Section 104 -
Allows States to contract with charitable, religious, and private organizations to provide services and administer programs established or modified under titles I, II, and VI of this Act. Prohibits the expenditure of financial assistance provided under such programs for sectarian worship, instruction, or proselytization.
Section 105 -
Directs the Secretary of Commerce to expand census data collection efforts to enable the Bureau of the Census to collect statistically significant data on grandparent caregivers.
Section 106 -
Requires an HHS report to the Congress on State automated data processing systems used in administering SSA title IV part A programs to determine what would be required to establish a system for tracking public program participants and checking case records to determine if such participants are participating in public programs of two or more States.
Section 107 -
Details requirements for a similar report, and study, on alternative outcomes measures for evaluating the success of the States in moving individuals off welfare through employment.
Section 108 -
Makes conforming amendments to SSA, the Food Stamp Act of 1977, and related provisions of other specified Federal laws.
Section 111 -
Directs the Commissioner of Social Security (Commissioner) to: (1) develop a prototype counterfeit-resistant social security card; and (2) study and issue a report to the Congress with regard to improving the social security card application process.
Section 112 -
Requires any organization accepting Federal funds under this Act to disclose that fact in any communication it makes that in any way intends to promote public support or opposition to any Federal, State, or local government policy through any broadcasting station, periodical, or other specified type of general public advertising. Makes any organization failing to make such a disclosure ineligible to receive Federal funds under this Act.
Section 113 -
Amends the Family Support Act of 1988 to remove the "demonstration" status of the Job Opportunities for Certain Low-Income Individuals (JOLI) program and give it an increased annual authorization for any fiscal year.
Title II - Supplemental Security Income
Subtitle A - Eligibility Restrictions
Amends SSA title XVI (Supplemental Security Income) (SSI) to deny SSI for ten years to individuals found to have fraudulently misrepresented residence in order to obtain benefits simultaneously in two or more States. Denies SSI for fugitive felons and probation and parole violators. Provides for exchange of SSI information with law enforcement agencies under certain conditions.
Section 203 -
Revises the treatment afforded prisoners with regard to SSI and OASDI (Old Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance) benefits under SSA title II to:
(1) deny SSI benefits for ten years to a person found to have fraudulently obtained them while in prison;
(2) eliminate the OASDI requirement that confinement stem from a crime punishable by imprisonment for more than one year; and
(3) authorize the Commissioner to contract with any interested State or local institutions used to confine prisoners for monthly reports back of certain identifying information in order to enforce SSI and OASDI benefit limitations, and pay such institution a specified fee with regard to each SSI- or OASDI-eligible inmate identified who becomes ineligible for such benefit as a result of such reporting.
Requires the Commissioner to study and report to the Congress on other specified potential improvements in the collection of information respecting public inmates.
Section 204 -
Makes certain changes respecting the effective date of applications for SSI benefits.
Subtitle B - Benefits for Disabled Children
Revises the rules with respect to childhood eligibility, with corresponding changes to childhood SSI regulations modifying the medical criteria for evaluation of mental and emotional disorders, and discontinuing the use of individualized functional assessments for children. Modifies medical improvement review standards, specifically dividing their applicability to, and creating separate criteria for, individuals aged 18 or older, and individuals under age 18, respectively.
Section 211 -
Provides that once an eligible child meets the definition of disability, the amount of the individual's cash benefit will be based on whether or not the child meets criteria for needing personal assistance enabling the child to stay at home with his or her family.
Section 212 -
Provides that at least once every three years the Commissioner shall review the continued SSI eligibility of each individual who has not attained age 18 and is eligible for such benefits by reason of an impairment (or combination of impairments) which is likely to improve (or, at the Commissioner's option, is unlikely to improve).
Requires a representative payee of a recipient whose case is so reviewed to present, at the time of review, evidence demonstrating that the recipient is, and has been, receiving treatment, to the extent considered medically necessary and available, for the condition which was the basis for providing benefits under the SSI program.
Provides that if the representative payee refuses to comply without good cause with such requirement, the Commissioner shall, if in the individual's best interest, promptly terminate payment of benefits to the representative payee, and provide for payment of benefits to an alternative representative payee of the individual or, if the interest of the individual would be served thereby, to the individual.
Provides that if an individual is eligible for SSI benefits by reason of disability for the month preceding the month in which the individual attains age 18, the Commissioner shall redetermine such eligibility:
(1) during the one-year period beginning on the individual's 18th birthday; and
(2) by applying the criteria used in determining the initial eligibility for applicants who have attained age 18.
Specifies requirements governing continuing disability reviews for low-birth-weight babies.
Section 213 -
Revises provisions regarding the disposal of resources for less than fair market value by certain individuals and appropriate notification of Medicaid. Provides for the treatment of assets held in trust by individuals who have not attained age 18 and any earnings resulting from such trust.
Requires representative payees of eligible individuals below age 18 to establish financial institution accounts on their behalf into which SSI payments shall be paid.
Allows representative payees to use funds in the account to pay for certain allowable expenses.
Directs the Commissioner to establish a system for accountability monitoring whereby a representative payee shall report on activities respecting funds in the account.
Section 214 -
Reduces cash SSI payments to institutionalized children whose medical costs are covered by private insurance.
Section 215 -
Provides for installment payment of large amounts of past-due SSI benefits, and the recovery of SSI overpayments from social security benefits.
Subtitle C - State Supplementation Programs
Repeals maintenance of effort requirements applicable to optional State programs for supplementation of SSI benefits.
Subtitle D - Studies Regarding Supplemental Security Income Program
Requires the Commissioner to prepare an annual report for the President and the Congress on the SSI program, and make appropriate arrangements for a study of the disability determination process under SSA titles II and XVI for any needed changes.
Section 233 -
Outlines the requirements for a study and report by the General Accounting Office on the impact of this title on the SSI program and on the extra expenses incurred by families of children receiving benefits under such program that are not covered by other Federal, State, or local programs.
Subtitle E - National Commission on the Future of Disability
Establishes the National Commission on the Future of Disability to develop and carry out a comprehensive study of all matters related to the nature, purpose, and adequacy of all Federal programs serving individuals with disabilities in order to develop appropriate recommendations for any needed legislation or administrative action. Authorizes appropriations.
Subtitle F - Retirement Age Eligibility
Provides that, for purposes of determining an aged individual under SSI, the age used shall be the retirement age used under the OASDI program.
Title III - Child Support
Subtitle A - Eligibility for Services; Distribution of Payments
Amends part D (Child Support and Establishment of Paternity) of SSA title IV to require State plans for child and spousal support to provide: (1) certain services relating to paternity establishment or enforcement of child support obligations; and (2) continuation of services for families ceasing to receive assistance under Aid to Families with Dependent Children.
Section 302 -
Revises payment distribution guidelines for support obligations collected by the State on behalf of a family.
Section 303 -
Requires State plans to establish procedural guidelines for: (1) privacy safeguards regarding paternity and child support actions; and (2) notification to services applicants or recipients of all proceedings and orders affecting child support obligations.
Subtitle B - Locate and Case Tracking
Mandates that single statewide automated data systems include a State case registry containing records of: (1) each case in which services are provided by the State agency; and (2) each support order established on or after a specified date. Permits the linking of local registries.
Section 312 -
Requires State plans to include centralized, automated unit for the collection and disbursement of support payments. Permits the unit to be established by linking local disbursement units through an automated information network if the Secretary agrees that it will not cost more or take more time to establish or operate than a centralized system.
Section 313 -
Requires State plans to: (1) provide for a State-operated and automated State Directory of New Hires containing prescribed information furnished by employers on new personnel; and (2) transmit such information to the National Directory of New Hires.
Section 314 -
Requires States to have statutorily prescribed procedures: (1) for mandatory income withholding for support payments subject to enforcement; and (2) under which wages of a person with a support obligation imposed by a child support order issued before October 1, 1996, shall become subject to withholding if arrearages occur, without the need for a judicial or administrative hearing. Revises the procedural guidelines for income withholding for child support enforcement.
Section 315 -
Requires the States to have statutorily prescribed procedures to ensure that Federal and State agencies conducting income-withholding activities have access to State locator systems for motor vehicle or law enforcement purposes.
Section 316 -
Revises the Federal Parent Locator Service to provide for additional information which may be transmitted to locate individuals and assets for purposes of:
(1) establishing parentage;
(2) establishing, setting the amount of, modifying, or enforcing child support obligations; and
(3) enforcing child custody or visitation orders.
Directs the HHS Secretary to establish in the Federal Parent Locator Service an automated Federal Case Registry of Child Support Orders and an automated National Directory of New Hires. Requires the Secretaries of Labor and HHS to jointly develop cost-effective methods of accessing information in the various State directories of new hires and the National Directory of New Hires (established under this Act), taking into account impact and cost to the States, and the need to ensure authorized use of wage record information.
Section 317 -
Requires States to have statutorily prescribed procedures requiring recordation on such documents of the Social Security number of: (1) specified driver's, marriage, and occupational, and professional license applicants; (2) individuals subject to certain domestic relations orders; and (3) deceased persons (on death records).
Subtitle C - Streamlining and Uniformity of Procedures
Requires each State to have the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act in effect as of January 1, 1998. Amends the Federal judicial code to revise the procedures for the court to apply when determining which State order to recognize for purposes of continuing, exclusive jurisdiction and enforcement for child support orders.
Section 323 -
Requires the States to have statutorily prescribed procedures requiring: (1) expedited administrative enforcement in interstate cases and support orders; and (2) expedited administrative and judicial procedures for establishing paternity and enforcing support obligations.
Subtitle D - Paternity Establishment
Revises the guidelines for State laws governing paternity establishment. Requires State procedures under which the name of the father shall be included on the birth certificate only: (1) if the mother and father have signed a voluntary acknowledgment of paternity; or (2) pursuant to a judicial or administrative order.
Section 333 -
Requires State plans for child and spousal support to provide that the State agency administering the plan will make a determination as to whether a program recipient is cooperating in good faith with State efforts to establish paternity and secure support.
Subtitle E - Program Administration and Funding
Directs the Secretary to develop a new incentive system to replace the current one. Revises the guidelines for Federal performance-based incentive payments to the States for effective child support enforcement programs.
Section 342 -
Requires a State plan for child and spousal support to include prescribed procedures for State reviews and audits. Revises the guidelines for Federal evaluation and audit of State programs governing paternity, child and spousal support, and parent location. (Sec 344) Revises the automated data processing requirements for State plans to mandate a single statewide automated data processing and information retrieval system which can perform specified tasks.
Section 345 -
Makes funds available to the Secretary for: (1) training of Federal and State staff, research and demonstration programs, and special projects of regional and national significance; and (2) operation of the Federal Parent Locator Service.
Subtitle F - Establishment and Modification of Support Orders
Revises the requirements for State plan procedures for the review and adjustment of support orders.
Section 352 -
Amends the Fair Credit Reporting Act to authorize a consumer agency to furnish a consumer report: (1) in response to a request by a governmental child support enforcement agency; or (2) to the State administrative agency which sets child support awards.
Section 353 -
Shields a depository institution from Federal or State liability for disclosing any financial record of an individual to a State child support enforcement agency. Prohibits such agency from disclosing such a financial record except for the purpose of, and to the extent necessary in, establishing, modifying, or enforcing a child support obligation. Sets forth civil penalties for knowingly or negligently violating such prohibition.
Subtitle G - Enforcement of Support Orders
Amends Internal Revenue Code procedural guidelines for the collection of arrearages to provide that no additional fee may be assessed for adjustments to a previously certified amount.
Section 362 -
Amends part D (Child Support and Establishment of Paternity) of SSA title IV to revise procedural guidelines for: (1) consent by the United States to income withholding, garnishment, and similar proceedings for enforcement of child support and alimony obligations of current and retired Federal employees; and (2) enforcement of child support obligations of members of the armed forces.
Section 364 -
Requires a State plan for child and spousal support to have in effect the Uniform Fraudulent Conveyance Act of 1981, the Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act of 1984, or a similar law, as well as certain procedures governing the voiding of fraudulent transfers by a child support debtor.
Section 365 -
Requires a State plan for child and spousal support to include specified procedures:
(1) to ensure that persons owing past-due support work or participate in work activities the court deems appropriate;
(2) to report to credit bureaus the name of the parent in arrears for child support;
(3) to provide for liens against real and personal property for the support arrearages of a non-custodial parent; and
(4) to implement the restriction of driver's, professional, occupational, and recreational licenses of individuals owing support arrearages.
Section 370 -
Requires the Secretary of State to deny, revoke, or limit a passport upon certification of nonpayment of child support.
Section 371 -
Authorizes the Secretary of State to negotiate reciprocal agreements with foreign nations: (1) regarding international enforcement of child support obligations; and (2) designating the Department of Health and Human Services as the central authority for such enforcement.
Section 372 -
Requires States to have statutorily prescribed procedures under which a State agency shall enter agreements with financial institutions doing business within the State to develop and operate a data match system to provide identifying information for each non-custodial parent targeted by the State who maintains an account at the institution, and to encumber or surrender such parent's assets at the institution pursuant to a lien or levy.
Section 373 -
Requires States to have statutorily prescribed procedures under which child support orders relating to the child of minor parents, where the custodial parents are receiving assistance, are enforceable against the child's paternal or maternal grandparents.
Section 374 -
Amends Federal bankruptcy law and the Social Security Act to declare a debt for child support nondischargeable in bankruptcy.
Subtitle H - Medical Support
Amends the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) to include within the definition of medical child support order an order issued through a State administrative process.
Section 377 -
Amends part D of SSA title IV to mandate statutorily prescribed procedures under which all enforced child support orders shall include a provision for the health care coverage of the child.
Subtitle I - Enhancing Responsibility and Opportunity for Non-Residential Parents
Amends part D of SSA title IV to prescribe guidelines under which the Administration for Children and Families shall make grants to enable States to establish and administer access and visitation programs to facilitate non-custodial parents' access to their children.
Subtitle J - Effect of Enactment
Sets forth effective dates and conforming amendments.
Title IV - Restricting Welfare and Public Benefits for Aliens
Subtitle A - Eligibility for Federal Benefits
Prohibits (with exceptions) specified Federal benefits to nonqualified aliens. Limits (with exceptions) qualified alien access to other specified Federal programs. Requires the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development to provide the Immigration and Naturalization Service with information on illegal aliens.
Subtitle B - Eligibility for State and Local Public Benefits Programs
Sets forth similar prohibitions and limitations on alien access to State and local public benefits.
Subtitle C - Attribution of Income and Affidavits of Support
Attributes a sponsor's (and spouse's) income and resources to the alien sponsoree in determining eligibility for Federal means-tested public benefits.
Section 422 -
Authorizes States to make similar attributions.
Section 423 -
Amends the Immigration and Nationality Act to set forth sponsor affidavit of support requirements.
Section 424 -
Amends the Higher Education Act of 1965 to require sponsor cosignature of alien student loans.
Subtitle D - General Provisions
Directs the Attorney General to promulgate regulations for verification of Federal public benefits eligibility.
Section 435 -
Makes the determination of an alien's qualifying quarters under title II (Old Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance) of the Social Security Act dependant upon whether or not a parent or spouse received Federal means-tested assistance during such quarters.
Subtitle E - Conforming Amendments Related to Assisted Housing
Makes conforming amendments to the Housing and Community Development Act of 1980.
Subtitle F - Earned Income Credit Denied to Unauthorized Employees
Amends the Internal Revenue Code to require a taxpayer to provide his or her social security number in order to qualify for the individual earned income credit.
Title V - Reductions in Federal Government Positions
Outlines the mechanism for various specified Federal executive agency workforce reductions, requiring submission to specified congressional committees of certain determinations about the number of full-time equivalent (FTE) positions of their respective departments by the Secretaries of Agriculture, of Education, of Labor, of Housing and Urban Development, and of HHS. Requires the Secretaries to make FTE reductions, including reductions-in-force, resulting from such determinations over the ensuing 14 months.
Requires the Comptroller General to analyze and report to such committees on such determinations, with recommendations for further FTE reductions, if appropriate.
Section 502 -
Requires the HHS Secretary to reduce the Federal workforce within HHS:
(1) by 75 percent of the FTE positions relating to any direct spending program, or any program funded through discretionary spending, that has been converted into a block grant program by this Act; and
(2) by 75 percent of a proportionate number of the total FTE departmental management positions.
Requires reduction of FTE positions in HHS:
(1) by 245 FTE positions related to the program converted by this Act into TEA block grants; and
(2) by 60 FTE managerial positions.
Section 503 -
Encourages the HHS Secretary to reduce personnel in the Washington, D.C., area office (agency headquarters) before reducing field personnel.
Title VI - Reform of Public Housing
Amends the United States Housing Act of 1937 to prohibit (with an exception) increased housing assistance under such Act due to reduced family income resulting from noncompliance reductions in welfare or other public assistance benefits.
Section 602 -
Prohibits an increase in federally appropriated means-tested welfare or public assistance due to reduced income resulting from fraud-caused reductions under another means-tested welfare or public assistance program.
Title VII - Child Protection Block Grant Programs and Foster Care, Adoption Assistance and Independent Living Programs
Subtitle A - Child Protection Block Grant Program and Foster Care, Adoption Assistance, and Independent Living Programs
Replaces title IV-B (Child Welfare Services) with a block grant program to the States to implement: (1) child protection programs regarding child abuse and neglect; and (2) child protection.
Section 701 -
Prescribes guidelines under which the Secretary of Health and Human Services (the Secretary) shall: (1) establish a national data collection and analysis program to coordinate existing State child abuse and neglect reports; and (2) implement a data collection system regarding adoption and foster care. Appropriates funds for child welfare studies and for assessment of State courts improvement of foster care and adoption proceedings.
Section 711 -
Makes conforming amendments to title IV-E (Foster Care and Adoption Assistance). Delineates requirements for State eligibility for Federal payments for foster care maintenance and adoption assistance. Sets forth guidelines for payments and allotments to the States for adoption assistance, foster care, and independent living programs (designed to assist children who have attained age 16 to make the transition from foster care to independent living).
Section 731 -
Instructs the Secretary to submit a legislative proposal to certain congressional committees providing for technical and conforming amendments in the law, pursuant to this Act.
Section 732 -
Expresses the sense of the Congress that States should:
(1) allocate sufficient funds for adoption and medical assistance to encourage child adoption;
(2) offer incentives to make adoption of special needs children more affordable for middle-class families;
(3) provide a child that must be removed from its biological parents with a single foster care placement and single coordinated case team, including conclusion of adoption within one year of such child's foster care placement; and
(4) participate in programs to enable maximum visibility of waiting children to potential parents.
Subtitle B - Child and Family Services Block Grant
Renames the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act as the Child and Family Services Block Grant Act of 1996. Changes the purposes of the Act to emphasize assistance to each State in improving child protective service systems. Delineates criteria governing State eligibility for Federal block grants for: (1) child and family services; and (2) research, demonstrations, training, and technical assistance.
Section 751 -
Instructs the Secretary to:
(1) establish a national child abuse and neglect data collection and analysis program, and a national clearinghouse for information relating to child abuse; and
(2) provide technical and training assistance to the States for child abuse and neglect programs and for adoption opportunities.
Mandates peer review for such grants.
Instructs the Secretary to conduct a national random sample study of children at risk of child abuse or neglect.
Authorizes appropriations for FY 1996 through 2002, including grants for demonstration projects.
Authorizes the Secretary to make grants to States to assist them in developing programs related to the investigation and prosecution of child abuse and neglect cases.
Requires any State requesting such assistance to establish a multidisciplinary task force on children's justice to study administrative, civil, and criminal judicial handling of such cases, and make recommendations which the State must adopt (or equivalent alternatives).
Title VIII - Child Care
Child Care and Development Block Grant Amendments of 1996 - Revises and extends through FY 2002 the authorization of appropriations for the Child Care and Development Block Grant Act of 1990 (the Act, for purposes of this title). Sets forth goals for State child care assistance.
Section 803 -
Amends Part A of title IV (AFDC) of the Social Security Act to entitle each State to payments for providing child care assistance.
Section 804 -
Authorizes the State lead agency to administer the financial assistance it receives through other governmental or nongovernmental agencies.
Section 805 -
Revises State application and plan requirements with respect to consumer education information, State licensing compliance, meeting the needs of AFDC or TEA recipients (especially those attempting through work activities to leave the assistance program) and those at risk of becoming dependent on assistance, and assistance for certain low-income working families.
Section 807 -
Reduces from 20 percent to three percent the minimum amount of certain funds available for State activities to improve the quality of child care, limited to: (1) comprehensive consumer education to parents and the public; (2) activities increasing parental choice; and (3) activities designed to improve child care quality and availability.
Section 808 -
Repeals a requirement that States expend a specified minimum amount of reserved funds for early childhood development and before- and after-school services.
Section 813 -
Reduces the allotment reserved for Indian tribes or tribal organizations from three percent to one percent. Prescribes guidelines for the use of such allotment for facility repair and construction.
Section 815 -
Repeals: (1) the Child Development Associate Scholarship Assistance Act of 1985; (2) the State Dependent Care Development Grants Act; (3) specified programs under title X (Programs of National Significance) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 and (4) the Native Hawaiian Family-based Education Centers program under the Native Hawaiian Education Act.
Title IX - Child Nutrition Programs
Subtitle A - National School Lunch Act
Amends the National School Lunch Act (NSLA) to repeal specified authorities and requirements for the school lunch and related programs, including:
(1) State educational authority to use resources from the nutrition and education (NET) program;
(2) prohibition of State imposition of teaching personnel and curriculum requirements at any school;
(3) certain demonstration grants to private nonprofit organizations or educational institutions for elementary school curriculum food and nutrition projects;
(4) aspects of summer food service programs, reducing payment rates and daily meals at camps, reducing the National Youth Sports Program, and revising nutritional standards compliance requirements;
(5) certain commodity distribution program requirements, including State Advisory Councils;
(6) expansion of the child care food program;
(7) adult care food aid to adult day care centers and services for persons over 60;
(8) certain pilot projects, including one for paperwork reduction; and
(9) an information clearinghouse.
Section 901 -
Includes in the definition of child any individual with one or more mental or physical disabilities, regardless of age, who attends a specified type of institution, or any nonresidential public or nonprofit private school of high school grade or under, in order to participate in a school program for such individuals.
Section 902 -
Revises nutritional requirements.
Section 905 -
Prohibits, in general, any waiver that will increase Federal costs.
Subtitle B - Child Nutrition Act of 1966
Amends the Child Nutrition Act of 1966 (CNA) to revise the school breakfast program: (1) eliminating Federal assistance for food preparation training and program expansion and start-up costs; (2) repealing certain authorities and requirements relating to State administrative expenses (SAE); (3) repealing the prohibition against State imposition of teaching personnel and curriculum requirements at any school; (4) repealing the program of cash grants for nutrition education.
Section 929 -
Revises the special supplemental nutrition program for women, infants, and children (WIC), among other things repealing specified requirements and changing from mandatory to optional: (1) drug abuse education; and (2) provision of WIC information in languages other than English.
Section 931 -
Makes the Nutrition and Education program discretionary rather than mandatory. Authorizes appropriations.
Title X - Food Stamps and Commodity Distribution
Food Stamp Reform and Commodity Distribution Act of 1996 -
Subtitle A - Food Stamp Program
Amends the Food Stamp Act of 1977 (Act) to establish a maximum 24-month food stamp program (program) authorization period for households whose adult members are elderly or disabled.
Section 1012 -
Expands the definition of "coupon."
Section 1013 -
Treats children who are themselves parents living with their children and married children living with their spouses as part of an existing household rather than as a separate household.
Section 1014 -
Authorizes States to establish additional criteria for separate household determinations.
Section 1015 -
Revises thrifty food plan adjustment requirements.
Section 1016 -
Revises the definition of "homeless individual" to limit the length of time a person may temporarily live in another person's residence.
Section 1018 -
Revises household income exclusion provisions regarding: (1) students; and (2) Federal energy assistance.
Section 1020 -
Revises household income deduction provisions regarding: (1) standard deductions; (2) earned income; (3) dependent care; (4) child support payments; (5) homeless shelter assistance; (6) excess medical expenses; and (7) excess shelter expenses.
Section 1021 -
Eliminates specified excludable auto value increases and establishes the maximum excludable auto value at $4600.
Section 1022 -
Includes as household income third party payments for transitional housing for the homeless.
Section 1023 -
Increases penalties for certain program violations.
Section 1024 -
Disqualifies permanently an individual convicted of specified coupon violations.
Section 1025 -
Revises work requirement and employment and training provisions. Extends employment and training funding authorizations.
Section 1028 -
Authorizes comparable program disqualification based upon welfare or public assistance disqualification.
Section 1029 -
Disqualifies permanently an individual who participates in the program in two or more States.
Section 1030 -
Disqualifies a fleeing felon from program participation.
Section 1031 -
Requires at State option: (1) cooperation with child support agencies in order to maintain program eligibility; and (2) program disqualification for child support arrears.
Section 1033 -
Defines "work program." Makes nonexempt persons ineligible for program benefits if during the preceding 12-month period they received food stamps for four months or more without working at least 20 hours per week, or participating in a workfare program. Sets forth exempted persons and situations.
Section 1034 -
Directs States to implement electronic benefit transfer systems.
Section 1035 -
Eliminates annual minimum allotment adjustments.
Section 1037 -
Authorizes a combined allotment for expedited households.
Section 1038 -
Authorizes program reductions for failure to comply with a public assistance reduction requirement.
Section 1039 -
Authorizes program assistance for households residing in a homeless shelter or drug or alcohol treatment center.
Section 1040 -
Provides that no food store or wholesale food concern be approved for program participation without a prior visit by a Department of Agriculture employee, or whenever possible, a designated State or local official.
Section 1041 -
Directs the Secretary of Agriculture (Secretary) to establish authorization periods for retail food stores and wholesale food concerns to redeem food stamps or benefits through an electronic benefit transfer system.
Section 1042 -
Includes income and sales tax information among the types of eligibility verification information that may be requested.
Section 1043 -
Establishes a six-month reapplication waiting period for a store that does not meet participation requirements.
Section 1044 -
Revises: (1) food stamp office operating provisions; and (2) expedited coupon service requirements.
Section 1045 -
Eliminates certain certification personnel training requirements.
Section 1046 -
Provides for the exchange of information with law enforcement or Immigration and Naturalization Service personnel.
Section 1048 -
Authorizes a family to withdraw a fair hearing request.
Section 1049 -
Permits States to use income, and immigration eligibility verification systems other than the system used in part A (General Provisions) of title XI (General Provisions and Peer Review) of the Social Security Act.
Section 1050 -
Provides for disqualification of a store: (1) that knowingly submits a falsified application; and (2) that is disqualified from the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC).
Section 1052 -
Directs program overissuances to be collected by: (1) allotment reduction; (2) unemployment compensation withholding; or (3) Federal pay or Federal income tax refund recovery.
Section 1053 -
Authorizes suspension of a store pending administrative and judicial review. (States that the Secretary shall not be liable for lost sales during such period.)
Section 1054 -
Establishes criminal forfeiture penalties for specified program violations.
Section 1055 -
Terminates Federal matching requirements for program recruitment activities.
Section 1057 -
Authorizes States to use funds otherwise available to a participating household for a work supplementation or support program. Sets forth program provisions.
Section 1058 -
Authorizes waiver of program requirements as necessary to conduct related pilot projects. Authorizes appropriations.
Section 1061 -
Authorizes States to carry out private sector employment initiatives. Sets forth program provisions.
Section 1062 -
Authorizes appropriations for program operations.
Section 1063 -
Authorizes States to carry out a Simplified Food Stamp Program in lieu of existing program requirements. Sets forth program provisions.
Section 1064 -
Establishes an optional State food assistance block grant program in lieu of the food stamp program. Sets forth program provisions.
Subtitle B - Commodity Distribution Programs
Amends the Emergency Food Assistance Act of 1983 to combine the emergency food assistance program with the soup kitchen-food bank program. Amends the Act to direct the Secretary to purchase commodities for such combined programs.
Section 1072 -
Amends the Charitable Assistance and Food Bank Act of 1987 to repeal the food bank demonstration project.
Section 1073 -
Makes conforming amendments to the Hunger Prevention Act of 1988.
Title XI - Miscellaneous
Requires any funds received by a State under the TEA program, the optional State food assistance block grant program under the Food Stamp Act of 1977, or the child care block grant program under the Child Care and Development Block Grant Act of 1990, to be expended only in accordance with the laws and procedures applicable to expenditures of the State's own revenues, including appropriation by the State legislature, consistent with the terms and conditions required under such provisions of law.
Section 1102 -
Amends the United States Housing Act of 1937 to eliminate housing assistance with respect to fugitive felons and probation and parole violators, and provide for the exchange of certain housing information with law enforcement agencies upon request for specified official purposes.
Section 1103 -
Expresses the sense of the Senate that the Congress should adopt enterprise zone legislation in the 104th Congress, and that such legislation provide various specified incentives and provisions, such as Federal tax incentives that expand access to capital, increase the formation and expansion of small businesses, and promote commercial revitalization.
Section 1104 -
Expresses the sense of the Senate that:
(1) States should diligently continue their efforts to enforce child support payments by the non-custodial parent to the custodial parent, regardless of the employment status or location of the non-custodial parent; and
(2) States are encouraged to pursue pilot programs in which the parents of a non-adult, non-custodial parent who refuses to or is unable to pay child support must pay or contribute to the child support owed by the non-custodial parent or otherwise fulfill all financial obligations and meet all conditions imposed on the non-custodial parent, such as participation in a work program or other related activity.
Section 1105 -
Amends the Food Stamp Act of 1977 to modify the eligibility disqualifications for aliens to give State agencies the option of considering either all income and financial resources of the individual rendered ineligible to participate in the food stamp program, or such income, less a pro rata share, and the financial resources of the ineligible individual, to determine the eligibility and the value of the allotment of the household of which such individual is a member.
Section 1106 -
Directs the HHS Secretary to establish and implement a certain strategy for: (1) preventing out-of-wedlock teenage pregnancies; and (2) assuring that at least 25 percent of the communities in the United States have teenage pregnancy prevention programs in place.
Section 1107 -
Expresses the sense of the Senate that States and local jurisdictions should aggressively enforce statutory rape laws.
Section 1108 -
Provides that States shall not be prohibited by the Federal Government from sanctioning welfare recipients who test positive for the use of controlled substances.
Section 1109 -
Amends SSA title V (Maternal and Child Health Services) to provide for an increase in funding under such title and authorize the provision of abstinence education, along with a separate funding set-aside for it.
Section 1110 -
Amends the Electronic Fund Transfer Act to make certain amendments in order to encourage electronic benefit transfer systems for the distribution of needs-tested benefits by a government agency.
Section 1111 -
Amends SSA title XX (Block Grants to States for Social Services) to provide for a reduction in block grants to States for social services.

House Republican Conference Summary

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