OTDA Regulatory Agenda

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OTDA Regulatory Agenda

Pursuant to State Administrative Procedure Act (SAPA) § 202-d, the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) is required to publish a regulatory agenda for those regulations that it is considering for publication in the New York State Register. Set forth below is an agenda for 2023. SAPA § 202-d does not preclude OTDA from proposing for adoption a regulation that is not described in the agenda, nor does it require OTDA to propose for adoption a regulation that is described in the agenda.

All references are to Title 18 of the New York Codes, Rules and Regulations (NYCRR) unless otherwise noted. The agenda items are organized pursuant to the Part of Title 18 NYCRR that most likely would be amended. However, the agenda items eventually could require amendments to different Parts than those listed below and/or to more than one Part of Title 18 NYCRR.

Part 301 – Veteran Assistance

Amend regulations to replace gender-specific terms with gender-neutral terms.

Part 311 – Change of Residence

Amend regulations to repeal certain residency requirements to reflect current policies and practices.

Part 340 – Public Access to Department Records under the Freedom of Information Law

Update regulations concerning public access to records under the Freedom of Information Law to reflect the current organization of the Department of Family Assistance.

Part 346 – Support Collection

Update regulations to allow for reporting increases in the amount subject to administrative enforcement in certified cases.

Part 347 – Establishment of Paternity and Enforcement of Child Support

Revise regulations to permit electronic provision of notices and communications related to case closure and desk reviews of the distribution and disbursement of support collections.

Update regulations to allow the noncustodial parent’s copy of an electronic income withholding order (i.e., e-IWO) to be transmitted electronically, consistent with federal program rules.

Revise regulations concerning the provision of child support services in intergovernmental cases.

Update regulations to be consistent with the federal rules regarding case closure criteria, as set forth in Title 45 Code of Federal Regulations § 303.11, and to increase the options available to social services districts (districts) to close cases, if certain conditions are met.

Part 351 – Investigation and Eligibility

Amend regulations relative to eligibility interviews by telephone or other digital means at the request of a public assistance applicant or recipient.

Part 352 – Standards of Assistance

Amend regulations to make technical updates to Part 352, including updating references to “aid to dependent children” and “home relief” with “family assistance” and “safety net assistance” respectively.

Amend regulations to update and clarify standards pertaining to hotels and motels used as placements for recipients of temporary housing assistance.*

Amend regulations to implement changes to public assistance policy consistent with SSL 131-a, which provides districts the option to cap the contributions toward their monthly shelter costs to thirty percent of their monthly gross earned income, prior to applying appropriate disregards, and/or unearned income, for individuals living with HIV/AIDS. *

Update regulations to conform with SSL § 131-n(1)(k), which specifies that Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) program accounts are exempted for public assistance purposes.

Amend regulations to conform with Part U of Chapter 56 of the Laws of 2022 to increase public assistance resource limits, permit public assistance recipients to save more money over time before losing eligibility for public assistance, and allow public assistance applicants to be eligible for public assistance with a higher amount in liquid resources.

Amend regulations to conform with Part U of Chapter 56 of the Laws of 2022 to clarify public assistance earned income and work expense disregards and income tests for public assistance eligibility.

Part 358 – Fair Hearings

Update regulations to clarify that the term “hearing officer” may be used interchangeably with the term “administrative law judge.”

Amend regulations to conform with 7 Code of Federal Regulations § 273.15(c)(4) regarding Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program fair hearing adjournment.*

Part 359 – Disqualification for Intentional Program Violation

Revise regulation to clarify that certain disqualification consent agreements are reviewable at a fair hearing to ensure compliance with procedural requirements.*

Part 369 – Family Assistance

Amend regulation to address applications for or receipt of public assistance as an assignment to the State and the social services district of rights to support.

Part 385 – Public Assistance and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Employment Program Requirements

Amend the title and the regulations of Part 385 to make technical updates, including updating references from “food stamp” to “SNAP.”

Clarify that support services may be provided to individuals assigned to work activities by the social services district.*

Revise assessment regulations to clarify that the requirements for exempt individuals in households without dependent children to comply with an assessment are consistent with those for exempt individuals in households with dependent children.*

Amend regulations to implement changes to the work activities that may be made available to individuals to include financial literacy.*

Establish additional guidelines regarding work activity definitions and work documentation and verification procedures to make them consistent with standards required by federal regulations.*

Implement changes to participation rate regulations to conform to amendments to the SSL which require districts to expand the countable work activities available to SNA participants without children to include community service programs, the provision of child care services to an individual participating in community service and time limited vocational education training, job search and job readiness assistance.*

Revise SNAP employment and training regulations to conform to federal regulations.*

Modify provisions that permit foster care parents and individuals who are caring for a disabled household member to be deemed as community service participants to only apply to public assistance households without dependent children. Federal regulations do not permit an individual who is caring for a disabled family member or a foster parent to be reported as participating in community service or any other work activity reported toward the federal work participation rate.

Part 387 – Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program

Amend regulations to make technical updates to Part 387.

Revise regulations to raise the level of the minimum annual Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) or other energy assistance benefit required to confer eligibility for the SNAP Heating and Cooling Standard Utility Allowance (HCSUA) from $1.00 to $21.00.*

Update regulations to reflect the current policy that standard allowances for heating/air conditioning, utility and telephone costs are used in calculating shelter expenses for SNAP.*

Update regulations to reflect the current policy that households in shared living arrangements are entitled to the full applicable level of the standard utility allowance.*

Revise SNAP regulations concerning the special definition of the “head of the household.”*

Delete SNAP monthly reporting/retrospective budgeting references and add provisions for change reporting.*

Conform regulations concerning in-office interviews for SNAP applicants to federal requirements.*

Generally update SNAP regulations to conform to changes in federal regulations and law.*

Part 393 – Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP)

Amend HEAP regulations to reflect current practices and the provisions of the federally accepted HEAP State Plan, including the confidentiality requirements contained therein.*

Amend regulations to articulate rules for protection of HEAP data and data sharing.

Part 800 – Homeless Housing and Assistance Program (HHAP)

Amend regulations regarding the conflict of interest rules for HHAP to address all ownership entities involved in HHAP projects. Revise and update certain definitions and terminology, clarify funding processes, and provide for the role of the Homeless Housing and Assistance Corporation Board as established in Private Housing Finance Law § 45-c.

Part 902 – Hotels and Motels Used as Emergency Placements for Persons and Families Experiencing Homelessness

Amend regulations to add a new Part 902: (1) setting forth the responsibilities of districts with respect to hotels and motels that are used to provide temporary emergency housing to persons and families experiencing homelessness; (2) update and clarify the standards applicable to these hotels/motels; (3) require that Temporary Housing Assistance (THA) recipients placed in hotels/motels are provided with supportive services that are currently available to THA recipients placed in shelters; and (4) clarify OTDA's oversight and enforcement authorities with respect to hotel/motels used by districts to place THA recipients.*

It is not anticipated that small business regulation guides will need to be developed for the proposals set forth in this agenda.

* The asterisks identify rules for which a regulatory flexibility analysis or a rural area flexibility analysis may be required.

At this time, OTDA cannot specify the dates for publication in the New York State Register of the items listed above. OTDA would welcome comments related to this regulatory agenda at the address listed below, and each published Notice of Proposed Rule Making will provide a public comment period and a contact person to whom comments may be sent.

Any questions, comments, or requests for information concerning the items listed in this agenda may be referred to Richard P. Rhodes, Jr., Associate Attorney, New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, 40 North Pearl Street 16C, Albany, New York 12243. Telephone: 518-486-7503. E-mail: richard.rhodesjr@otda.ny.gov. The regulatory agenda may be accessed on OTDA's website at http://otda.ny.gov/policy/regulatory-agenda/.

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