Legislature(1993 - 1994)

01/19/1994 01:34 PM HES

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
 PROGRAMS) as the next order of business before the committee.                 
 ELMER LINDSTROM, Special Assistant in the Department of Health and            
 Social Services (DHSS), stated that the department, specifically              
 the Division of Public Assistance, supports HJR 36 in its current             
 form.  He noted that HJR 36 is consistent with other activities               
 that DHSS and the Governor have undertaken in support of                      
 eliminating the 100-Hour Rule.                                                
 REPRESENTATIVE BRICE, the primary sponsor, cited welfare reform as            
 a savings of state money.  He expressed the need to find ways to              
 humanely transfer people off AFDC to become self-sufficient.  In              
 answer to Senator Leman, Representative Brice clarified that                  
 "remaining eligible" means remaining eligible for benefits for                
 participation at the appropriate level.                                       
 Number 466                                                                    
 SENATOR LEMAN referred to page 2 line 10 of the bill when asking if           
 the program has an offsetting scale which would partially decrease            
 the welfare benefit if the recipient is working a certain number of           
 ELMER LINDSTROM explained that this is a problem only for AFDC when           
 both parents in the family are present, the AFDC Unemployed Parent            
 portion.  The one parent family situation is not covered in this              
 bill.  Currently, if one works more than 100 hours they receive no            
 AFDC support. Elimination of the 100-Hour Program would allow                 
 people to take a lower paying job with the expectation of moving              
 off welfare eventually while maintaining a reduced level of AFDC              
 support.  He said this could result in savings for the program.               
 Mr. Lindstrom, in response to Senator Sharp, stated that AFDC is an           
 income-needs based program, therefore assistance is dependent upon            
 income and other resources of the recipient.                                  
 SENATOR ELLIS referred to the welfare reform of three years ago;              
 the federal law did not allow a one for one scheme working the                
 person off public assistance.  A one for one scheme reduces public            
 assistance according to earnings, dollar for dollar.  He cited the            
 prohibition of persons with accumulated resources from public                 
 assistance as another disincentive of getting off welfare.  He                
 emphasized that the greatest disincentive of getting off welfare is           
 the lack of health insurance in entry level jobs.                             
 Number 530                                                                    
 SENATOR MILLER moved that CSHJR 36 (HESS) be moved out of the                 
 Senate HESS committee with individual recommendations.  Hearing no            
 objections, it was so ordered.                                                

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