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NPRM: PRWORA Child Support Enforcement Program Automation

AT-98-11

Published: March 25, 1998
Information About:
State/Local Child Support Agencies
Topics:
State Systems, Advance Planning Documents (APD), Automation Initiatives, Independent Verification and Validation (IV&V)
Types:
Policy, Action Transmittals (AT)
Tags:
Location Systems, Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA)

ACTION TRANSMITTAL

OCSE-AT-98-11
March 25, 1998

TO: STATE AGENCIES ADMINISTERING CHILD SUPPORT ENFORCEMENT PLANS UNDER TITLE IV-D OF THE SOCIAL SECURITY ACT AND OTHER INTERESTED INDIVIDUALS

SUBJECT: Notice of Proposed Rulemaking - To implement provisions of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA), P.L. 104-193, related to child support enforcement program automation.

ATTACHMENT: Attached is a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, published in the Federal Register on March 25, 1998 (Volume 63, Number 57)

BACKGROUND: Under PRWORA, States must have in effect a statewide automated data processing and information retrieval system which 1) by October 1, 1997, meets all the requirements of title IV-D of the Social Security Act enacted on or before the date of enactment of the Family Support Act of 1988, and 2) by October 1, 2000, meets all the title IV-D requirements enacted under PRWORA. The law further provides that the October 1, 2000 deadline for systems enhancements will be delayed if HHS does not issue final regulations by August 22, 1998.

DATES: Consideration will be given to written comments received by May 11, 1998. We have reduced the standard 60-day comment period specified in E.O. 12866 to 45 days in recognition of the statutory deadline of August 22, 1998 for issuing final rules and the necessity of providing States with the required guidance as soon as practicable to facilitate their development or enhancement of systems.

TO COMMENT: Address comments to: Elizabeth C. Matheson, Director, Policy and Planning Division, Office of Child Support Enforcement, Department of Health and Human Services, 370 L'Enfant Promenade, S.W., Mail Stop: OCSE/DPP, Washington, D.C. 20447.

Comments may also be submitted by sending electronic mail (e-mail) to "ematheson@acf.hhs.gov" or by telefaxing to 202-401-3444. This is not a toll-free number. Comments sent electronically must be in ASCII format.

Comments will be available for public inspection Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on the fourth floor of the Department's offices at the address mentioned above.


David Gray Ross
Commissioner
Office of Child Support
Enforcement

[Federal Register: March 25, 1998 (Volume 63, Number 57)]

[Proposed Rules]

[Page 14402-14414]

From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]

[DOCID:fr25mr98-35]

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DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

Administration for Children and Families

45 CFR Parts 302, 304 and 307

RIN 0970-AB70

Computerized Support Enforcement Systems

AGENCY: Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE), ACF, HHS.

ACTION: Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.

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SUMMARY: These proposed regulations would implement provisions of the

Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996

(PRWORA), related to child support enforcement program automation.

Under PRWORA, States must have in effect a statewide automated data

processing and information retrieval system which by October 1, 1997,

meets all the requirements of title IV-D of the Social Security Act

enacted on or before the date of enactment of the Family Support Act of

1988, and by October 1, 2000, meets all the title IV-D requirements

enacted under PRWORA. The law further provides that the October 1,

2000, deadline for systems enhancements will be delayed if HHS does not

issue final regulations by August 22, 1998.

DATES: Consideration will be given to written comments received by May

11, 1998. We have reduced the standard 60-day comment period specified

in E.O. 12866 to 45 days in recognition of the statutory deadline of

August 22, 1998 for issuing final rules and the necessity of providing

States with the required guidance as soon as practicable to facilitate

their development or enhancement of systems.

ADDRESSES: Address comments to: Administration for Children and

Families, Department of Health and Human Services, 370 L'Enfant

Promenade, S.W., Washington D.C. 20447. Attention: Norman L. Thompson,

Associate Deputy Director for Automation and Special Projects, Office

of Child Support Enforcement.

Comments will be available for public inspection Monday through

Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on the fourth floor of the Department's

offices at the address mentioned above.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Betsy Matheson at (202) 401-7386.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Statutory Authority

These proposed regulations are published under the authority of

several provisions of the Social Security Act, as amended by the

Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of

1996. Sections 454(16), 454(24), 454A and 455(a)(3)(A) of the Act (42

U.S.C. 654(16), (24), 654A, and 655(a)(3)(A)), contain new requirements

for automated data processing and information retrieval systems to

carry out the State's IV-D State plan. Other sections, such as section

453 of the Act (42 U.S.C. 653) specify data that the system must

furnish or impose safeguarding and disclosure requirements that the

system must meet.

These proposed regulations are also published under the general

authority of section 1102 (42 U.S.C. 1302) of the Act which requires

the Secretary to publish regulations that may be necessary for the

efficient administration of the provisions for which she is responsible

under the Act.

Background

Full and complete automation is pivotal to improving the

performance of the nation's child support program. With a current

national caseload of 20 million, caseworkers are dependent on enhanced

technology and increased automation to keep up with the massive volume

of information and transactions critical to future success in providing

support to children.

While most States have sought some level of child support program

automation since the inception of the program, it wasn't until

enactment of the Family Support Act of 1988 (Pub. L. 100-485), that

program automation became a title IV-D State plan requirement. The

Family Support Act required that States have in operation by October 1,

1995, a certified statewide system. (This date was subsequently

extended to October 1, 1997, under Pub. L. 104-35).

These systems are to be statewide, operational, comprehensive,

integrated, efficient, and effective. They are required to provide for

case initiation; interface with other systems to obtain information to

locate parents; aid in paternity establishment efforts by tracking,

monitoring, and reporting on State efforts; monitor compliance with

support orders and initiate enforcement action; update and maintain

case records; process payments and distribute support; meet reporting

requirements and address security and privacy issues.

Under PRWORA, States must build on this comprehensive automated

foundation to implement the programmatic enhancements the law included

for strengthening child support enforcement, including new enforcement

tools and a shift in child support distribution requirements to a

family-first policy. By October 1, 2000, States must have in place an

automated statewide system that meets all the requirements and performs

all the functions specified in PRWORA. This requirement recognizes that

case processing changes and Federal and State legislative enhancements

to State IV-D programs have little impact without proper automated

support. The October 1, 2000 date is a completion date for the entire

system, however certain requirements and functions must be met prior to

that date. We have included those statutory effective dates in the

regulations.

Accordingly, this rule proposes to set forth in regulations the

framework for automation that State systems must have in place by the

October 1, 2000, deadline. Our approach in developing these proposed

rules was to adhere as closely as possible to the statute. We believe

this approach is essential to ensuring that the proposed rules are well

received, allowing the final regulation to be issued by the statutory

deadline of August 22, 1998. The State deadline for completing these

systems enhancements is delayed by one day for each day, if any, that

we miss the statutory deadline for regulating. We believe this would be

an unconscionable position--PRWORA compliant systems are intended to

have a substantial impact on States' ability to protect the support

rights of children, and it is essential that these changes are made

without delay.

In addition, we believe the statute provides a proper and straight-

forward

[[Page 14403]]

functional framework to support ACF's certification standards. These

standards are outlined in a document entitled, ``Automated Systems for

Child Support Enforcement: A Guide for States (the Guide).'' Concurrent

with publishing these rules and in partnership with State child support

agencies, we are updating the Guide to reflect the changes made by

PRWORA. In particular, we are focusing on ways to measure system

standards that support program outcomes most effectively.

The draft Guide will be disseminated to States and other interested

parties for comment through an Action Transmittal (AT). After reviewing

the comments received, we will issue an AT with final systems

functional requirements.

We have, however, proposed several changes in these regulations to

strengthen the process for approving and monitoring State activity

under Advanced Planning Documents (APDs) by codifying and building on

several existing practices and authorities relevant to systems

oversight in regulation. We believe this is necessary to ensure that

child support systems meet the critical needs of the program as

envisioned under the Family Support Act of 1988 and the Personal

Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996.

As is current practice, once ACF determines, through a

certification review, that a Computerized Support Enforcement System

(CSES) meets these standards throughout the State, the CSES is

certified by ACF. Certification may be granted in two stages. The first

stage, level 1 certification, is granted when a State system meets all

functional requirements in 45 CFR 307.10, as specified in the Guide,

and is installed and operational in a pilot or multiple pilot location

and; level 2 certification is granted when statewide installation of

the functionally comprehensive system is complete and the system is

operational.

PRWORA Automation Enhancements

As indicated above, the Family Support Act laid the foundation for

comprehensive automated systems. The PRWORA requirements build on this

base to ensure these systems support the new tools and other

programmatic enhancements the law included to strengthen child support

enforcement.

PRWORA added a new section 454A to the Act to house all functional

requirements that State systems must meet, both from the Family Support

Act and from PRWORA. Those emanating from PRWORA include:

• Functional requirements specified by the Secretary related

to management of the program (454A(b))

• Calculation of performance indicators (454A(c))

• Information integrity and security requirements (454A(d))

• Development of a State case registry (454A(e))

• Expanded information comparisons and other disclosures of

information (454A(f)), including to the Federal case registry of child

support orders and the Federal Parent Locator Service (FPLS) and with

other agencies in the State, agencies of other States and interstate

information networks, as necessary and appropriate.

• Collection and distribution of support payments (454A(g)),

including facilitating the State's centralized collection and

disbursement unit and modifications to meet the revised distribution

requirements.

• Expedited Administrative Procedures (454A(h))

Each of these is discussed in greater detail in the section of this

preamble entitled, Proposed Regulatory Changes.

To assist States in meeting these mandates for enhancement to their

statewide automated systems, Congress provided an additional amount of

Federal funding available at the 80 percent rate for the planning,

design, development, installation or enhancement of statewide,

automated systems. Section 344(b)(2) of PRWORA places a cap on the

Federal share of funding available at 80 percent enhanced Federal

Financial participation. This 80 percent funding is available to meet

the automation requirements of the Family Support Act as well as the

new automation requirements of PRWORA. PRWORA also revised section

455(a)(3) of the Act to restore 90 percent Federal funding for

completing Family Support Act systems on a limited basis.

Proposed Regulatory Changes

State Plan Requirements (Part 302)

To implement the statutory changes, we first propose to revise the

regulations at 45 CFR 302.85, ``Mandatory computerized support

enforcement systems.'' Current 45 CFR 302.85(a) provides that if the

State did not have in effect by October 13, 1988 a computerized support

enforcement system that meets the requirements of Sec. 307.10, the

State must submit an Advanced Planning Document (APD) for such a system

to the Secretary by October 1, 1991, and have an operational system in

effect by October 1, 1995.

Section 454(24) of the Act, as amended by PRWORA, provides that the

State must have in effect a computerized support enforcement system

which by October 1, 1997 meets all IV-D requirements in effect as of

the date of enactment (October 13, 1988) of the Family Support Act of

1988, including all IV-D requirements in PRWORA. In addition, the State

must have a CSES which by October 1, 2000 meets all IV-D requirements

in effect as of the date of enactment (August 22, 1996) of PRWORA,

including all IV-D requirements in that Act.

Thus, the proposed Sec. 302.85(a) of the regulations would

reiterate the current statutory requirements for mandatory automated

systems for support enforcement. Proposed Sec. 302.85(a)(1) would

include the requirement under existing paragraph (a) that the system be

developed in accordance with Secs. 307.5 and 307.10 of the regulations

and the OCSE guidelines entitled ``Automated Systems for Child Support

Enforcement: A Guide for States.'' In addition, the proposed

Sec. 302.85(a)(2) would require that, by October 1, 2000, a system

meeting PRWORA requirements be developed in accordance with Secs. 307.5

and 307.11 of the regulations and the OCSE guidelines referenced above.

Change in Federal Financial Participation (Part 304)

To make part 304 regulations consistent with the statute, we

propose to amend 45 CFR 304.20, ``Availability and rate of Federal

financial participation,'' at paragraph (c) to provide that FFP at the

90 percent rate for the planning, design, development, installation and

enhancement of computerized support enforcement systems that meet the

requirement of Sec. 307.30(a) is only available until September 30,

1997. (See the discussion below regarding revised Sec. 307.30(a).)

Computerized Support Enforcement Systems (Part 307)

We propose to amend 45 CFR part 307, Computerized support

enforcement systems, throughout to conform part 307 to the changes

required by sections 454, 454A, and 455(a) of the Act, as amended by

PRWORA and the proposed revisions to 45 CFR 302.85, which were

discussed earlier.

We propose to revise the title of Sec. 307.10 to read ``Functional

requirements for computerized support enforcement systems in operation

by October 1, 1997'', and add titles for two new sections,

``Sec. 307.11 Functional requirements for computerized support

enforcement systems in operation by October 1, 2000'' and ``Sec. 307.13

Security

[[Page 14404]]

and Confidentiality of computerized support enforcement systems in

operation by October 1, 2000'', to reflect these changes.

We propose to revise Sec. 307.0, ``Scope of this part'', to reflect

the new requirements of sections 454, 454A, 455(a) of the Act, as

amended, and section 344(a)(3) of PRWORA regarding statewide automated

CSESs. This would be accomplished by referencing the new statutory

language in the introductory section and by adding a new paragraph (c)

which would refer to the security and confidentiality requirements for

CSESs. Accordingly, current paragraphs (c) through (h) would be

redesignated as paragraphs (d) through (i).

In Sec. 307.1, ``Definitions'', we propose to add the definition of

``Business day'' as defined in the new section 454A(g)(2) of the Act.

Accordingly, current paragraphs (b) through (j) would be redesignated

as paragraphs (c) through (k). In addition, we propose in the

redesignated paragraphs (d) and (g) to replace the citation

``Sec. 307.10'' with the citations ``Secs. 307.10, or 307.11'' to

reflect the regulatory changes proposed below.

Mandatory Computerized Support Enforcement Systems

We propose to amend 45 CFR 307.5, Mandatory computerized support

enforcement systems, as follows:

Currently, paragraphs (a) and (b) are outdated and reflect

deadlines mandated by the Family Support Act on APD submittal

requirements and timeframes. To reflect the amended section 454(24) of

the Act, we propose to eliminate paragraphs (a) and (b) in their

entirety, to replace paragraph (a) and to renumber paragraphs (c)

through (h) as (b) through (g).

We propose adding a paragraph (a)(1) to provide that each State

must have in effect by October 1, 1997, an operational computerized

support enforcement system which meets the requirements in 45 CFR

302.85(a)(1) related to the Family Support Act of 1988 requirements and

to provide that OCSE will review the systems to certify that these

requirements are met. Under paragraph (a)(2), we propose to require

each State to have in effect, by October 1, 2000, an operational

computerized support enforcement system which meets the requirements in

45 CFR 302.85(a)(2) related to PRWORA requirements and to provide that

OCSE will review the systems to certify that these requirements are

met.

In addition, under paragraph (d), the reference to ``Sec. 307.10''

would be replaced by ``Secs. 307.10 or 307.11.''

Functional Requirements for Computerized Support Enforcement Systems

To reflect the statutory changes, the title of Sec. 307.10

``Functional requirements for computerized support enforcement

systems.'' would be revised to read ``Functional requirements for

computerized support enforcement systems in operation by October 1,

1997.'' to better reflect the content of the regulation. In the

introductory language, the citation ``Sec. 302.85(a)'' would be

replaced by the citation ``Sec. 302.85(a)(1)'' to reflect proposed

changes made earlier in the regulations. The citation ``AFDC'' would be

replaced by the citation ``TANF'' (Temporary Assistance for Needy

Families) in paragraph (b)(10). Paragraph (b)(14) would be deleted

because the requirement for electronic data exchange with the title IV-

F program (Job Opportunities and Basic Skills Training Program) is no

longer operative since under PRWORA States had to eliminate their IV-F

programs by July 1, 1997. Current paragraphs (b)(15) and (16) would be

redesignated as paragraphs (b)(14) and (15).

We propose to add a new regulation at 45 CFR 307.11, ``Functional

requirements for computerized support enforcement systems in operation

by October 1, 2000,'' which reiterates the new statutory requirements

in sections 454(16) and 454A of the Act, as discussed below.

The introductory language of proposed Sec. 307.11 would specify

that each State's computerized support enforcement system established

and operated under the title IV-D State plan at Sec. 302.85(a)(2) must

meet the requirements in this regulation. As proposed in paragraph (a),

the CSES in operation by October 1, 2000 must be planned, designed,

developed, installed or enhanced and operated in accordance with an

initial and annually updated APD approved under Sec. 307.15 of the

regulations. If the State elects to enhance its existing CSES to meet

PRWORA requirements, it has the option of submitting either a separate

APD or combining the Family Support Act and PRWORA requirements in one

APD update. If the State elects to develop a new CSES, a separate

implementation APD must be submitted.

We propose in paragraph (b) that the CSES control, account for, and

monitor all the factors in the support collection and paternity

determination process under the State plan which, at a minimum, include

the factors in the regulation. Under the proposed paragraph (b)(1), the

system must control, account for, and monitor the activities in

Sec. 307.10(b) of the regulations which a CSES in operation by October

1, 1997, must meet, except those activities in paragraphs (b)(3), (8),

and (11) of Sec. 307.10. These reporting, financial accountability, and

security activities are replaced by similar or expanded provisions

discussed later in this preamble that reflect statutory changes from

PRWORA.

We propose in paragraph (b)(2) to describe the tasks that the

computerized support enforcement system must have the capacity to

perform with the frequency and in the manner required under or by the

regulations that implement title IV-D of the Act. Paragraph (b)(2)(i)

requires the CSES to perform the functions discussed below and any

other functions the Secretary of HHS may specify related to the

management of the State IV-D program. We are not proposing to add

additional management-related functional requirements other than those

currently specified or provided in the statute.

Under the proposed paragraph (b)(2)(i)(A), the system must control

and account for the use of Federal, State, and local funds in carrying

out the State's IV-D program either directly or through an interface

with State financial management and expenditure information systems.

Some States currently meet this requirement by maintaining and

accessing IV-D cost data on a State financial management and

expenditure system. Since the statute does not specifically address

meeting this requirement through an interface with a State financial

management and expenditure information system, we propose to continue

to allow the States to meet the financial accountability requirements

through an interface.

Paragraph (b)(2)(i)(B) would require the system to maintain the

data necessary to meet Federal reporting requirements for the IV-D

program on a timely basis as prescribed by the Office of Child Support

Enforcement. This proposal is similar to the functional requirements at

Sec. 307.10(b)(3) that a system must meet by October 1, 1997.

Paragraph (b)(2)(ii)(A), as proposed, requires the CSES to enable

the Secretary of HHS to determine State incentive payments and penalty

adjustments required by sections 452(g) and 458 of the Act through the

use of automated processes to: (1) Maintain the necessary data for

paternity establishment and child support enforcement activities in the

State, and (2) calculate the paternity establishment percentage for the

State for each fiscal year. Under this requirement, the

[[Page 14405]]

system must maintain the necessary data and calculate for each fiscal

year the State's paternity establishment percentage under section

452(g) of the Act. The system must also maintain the data necessary to

determine State incentive payments under section 458 of the Act. In

addition, under paragraph (b)(1), the State will continue to be

required to compute and distribute incentive payments to political

subdivisions in accordance with Sec. 307.10(b)(6) of the regulations.

Proposed paragraph (b)(2)(ii)(B) would require the system to enable

the Secretary to determine State incentive payments and penalty

adjustments required by sections 452(g) and 458 of the Act by having in

place system controls to ensure: (1) The completeness, and reliability

of, and ready access to, the data on State performance for paternity

establishment and child support enforcement activities in the State,

and (2) the accuracy of the paternity establishment percentage for the

State for each fiscal year. Under this provision, the system controls

apply to data related to the calculation of the State's paternity

establishment percentage, and the calculation of incentive payments.

Data regarding the paternity establishment percentage and incentive

payments is reported to the Federal government in accordance with

instructions issued by OCSE.

Proposed paragraph (b)(2)(iii) requires the system to have controls

(e.g., passwords, or blocking of fields) to ensure strict adherence to

the systems security policies described in Sec. 307.13(a) of the

regulations. Under the proposed Sec. 307.13(a) discussed later in this

preamble, the State IV-D agency must have written policies concerning

access to data by IV-D agency personnel, and sharing of data with other

persons.

Under the proposed paragraph (b)(3), the system must control,

account for, and monitor the activities described in PRWORA not

otherwise addressed in this part. As indicated previously, we plan to

address the detailed systems functional requirements related to title

IV-D program requirements modified or added by PRWORA in the Guide

which we are in the process of revising and reissuing to the States.

Proposed paragraph (c) would require that the system, to the extent

feasible, assist and facilitate the collection and disbursement of

support payments through the State disbursement unit, operated under

section 454B of the Act. Under paragraph (c)(1), the system must

transmit orders and notices to employers and other debtors for the

withholding of income: (1) Within 2 business days after the receipt of

notice of income, and the income source subject to withholding from the

court, another State, an employer, the Federal Parent Locator Service,

or another source recognized by the State, and (2) using uniform

formats prescribed by the Secretary. On January 27, 1998, OCSE issued a

model wage withholding form (Approval 0970-0154) for use in

implementing wage withholding (OCSE Action Transmittal 98-03).

The proposed paragraph (c)(2) would require the system to monitor

accounts, on an ongoing basis, to identify promptly failures to make

support payments in a timely manner. Paragraph (c)(3), as proposed,

requires the system to automatically use enforcement procedures,

including enforcement procedures under section 466(c) of the Act, if

support payments are not made in a timely manner. These procedures

include Federal and State income tax refund offset, intercepting

unemployment compensation insurance benefits, intercepting or seizing

other benefits through State or local governments, intercepting or

seizing judgments, settlements, or lottery winnings, attaching and

seizing assets of the obligor held in financial institutions, attaching

public and private retirement funds, and imposing liens in accordance

with section 466(a)(4) of the Act.

Proposed paragraph (d) requires that, to the maximum extent

feasible, the system must be used to implement the expedited

administrative procedures required by section 466(c) of the Act. These

procedures include: ordering genetic testing for the purpose of

establishing paternity under section 466(a)(5) of the Act; issuing a

subpoena of financial or other information to establish, modify, or

enforce a support order; requesting information from an employer

regarding employment, compensation, and benefits of an employee or

contractor; accessing records maintained in automated data bases such

as records maintained by other State and local government agencies

described in section 466(c)(1)(D) of the Act and certain records

maintained by private entities regarding custodial and non-custodial

parents described in section 466(c)(1)(D) of the Act; increasing the

amount of monthly support payments to include an amount for support

arrears; and changing the payee to the appropriate government entity

when support has been assigned to the State, or required to be paid

through the State disbursement unit.

The proposed paragraph (e) requires the State to establish a State

case registry (SCR) which must be a component of the computerized child

support enforcement system. This registry is essentially a directory of

electronic case records or files. Proposed paragraph (e)(1) contains

definitions which relate to terms used in this section.

Proposed paragraph (e)(2) describes the records which the registry

must contain. Under the proposed paragraph (e)(2)(i), the registry must

contain a record of every case receiving child support enforcement

services under an approved State plan. Under the proposed paragraph

(e)(2)(ii), the registry must contain a record of every support order

established or modified in the State on or after October 1, 1998. Under

the proposed paragraph (e)(3) each record must include standardized

data elements for each participant. These data elements include the

name(s), social security number(s), date of birth, case identification

number(s), data elements required under paragraph (f)(1) of this

section for the operation of the Federal case registry (FCR) and any

other data elements required by the Secretary and set forth in

instructions issued by the Office.

Under the proposed paragraph (e)(4), each record must include

payment data for every case receiving services under the IV-D State

plan that has a support order in effect. Under this proposed provision,

the payment data must include the following information: (1) Monthly

(or other frequency) support owed under the order, (2) other amounts

due or overdue under the order including arrearages, interest or late

payment penalties and fees, (3) any amount described in paragraph

(e)(4)(i) and (ii) of this section that has been collected, (4) the

distribution of such collected amounts, (5) the birth date and,

beginning no later than October 1, 1999, the name and social security

number of any child for whom the order requires the provision of

support, and (6) the amount of any lien imposed under the order in

accordance with section 466(a)(4) of the Act.

Under paragraph (e)(5), the State using the CSES must establish and

update, maintain, and regularly monitor case records in the State case

registry for cases receiving services under the State plan. We have not

defined ``regularly.'' We invite public comment as to whether

timeframes or other standards should be set for the monitoring and

updating of records and if so what timeframes and standards would be

applied. To ensure that information on an established IV-D case is up

to date, the State must regularly update the record to make changes to

the status of a case, the status of and information about the

[[Page 14406]]

participants of a case, and the other data contained in the case

record.

Under the proposal, this would include the following: (1)

Information on administrative actions and administrative and judicial

proceedings and orders related to paternity and support, (2)

information obtained from comparison with Federal, State or local

sources of information, (3) information on support collections and

distributions, and (4) any other relevant information.

Under the proposed paragraph (e)(6), the State is authorized to

meet the requirement in paragraph (e)(2)(ii) of this section which

would require the State case registry to have a record of every support

order established or modified in the State on or after October 1, 1998,

by linking local case registries of support orders through an automated

information network. However, linked local case registries established

in the State's computerized support enforcement system must meet all

other requirements in paragraph (e) of this section.

Under proposed paragraph (f), the State must use the computerized

support enforcement system to extract information, at such times, and

in such standardized format or formats, as required by the Secretary,

for the purposes of sharing and comparing information and receiving

information from other data bases and information comparison services

to obtain or provide information necessary to enable the State, other

States, the Office of Child Support Enforcement or other Federal

agencies to carry out the requirements of the Child Support Enforcement

program. The use and disclosure of certain data is subject to the

requirements of section 6103 of the Internal Revenue Code and the

system must meet the security and safeguarding requirements for such

data specified by the Internal Revenue Service. (See IRS Publication

1075 entitled ``The Information Security Guidelines for Federal, State

and Local Agencies.'') The system must also comply with safeguarding

and disclosure requirements specified in the Act. Timeframes not

specified in Federal law regarding the transmission of information will

be developed in consultation with the States and appropriate Federal

and State workgroup(s). We invite public comment on whether these

matters should be addressed in the regulation and if so, what

timeframes should be imposed. The comparisons and sharing of

information include the activities specified below.

Under proposed paragraph (f)(1), effective October 1, 1998, the

State must furnish information to the Federal case registry, including

updates as necessary and notices of expiration of support orders,

except that States have until October 1, 1999, to furnish child data.

We invite public comment as to whether timeframes for the submission of

data on new cases or orders and for the submission of updated

information should be specified and if so, what are appropriate

standards.

Section 453(h)(2) and (3) of the Act require the inclusion of child

data in the FCR and provides the Secretary of Treasury with access to

FCR data for the purpose of administering those sections of the

Internal Revenue Code of 1986 which grant tax benefits based on the

support or residence of children, such as the Earned Income Tax

Program. Under the proposal, the State must provide to the FCR the

following data elements on participants: (1) State Federal Information

Processing Standard (FIPS) and optionally, county code; (2) State case

identification number; (3) State member identification number; (4) case

type (IV-D, non-IV-D); (5) social security number and any necessary

alternative social security numbers; (6) name, including first, middle,

last name and any necessary alternative names; (7) sex (optional); (8)

date of birth; (9) participant (custodial party, non-custodial parent,

putative father, child); (10) family violence indicator (domestic

violence or child abuse); (11) indication of an order; (12) locate

request type (optional); (13) locate source (optional), and (14) any

other information as the Secretary may require as set forth in

instructions issued by the Office.

These data elements were developed in consultation with a workgroup

comprising individuals from the State and the Federal level. The

primary reason that only these data elements were selected for

inclusion in the FCR is that they are static in nature, thereby

requiring less update and maintenance. The intent of the FCR is to

serve as a ``pointer'' system to quickly notify States of other States

that have an interest and/or information on a participant. State

automated child support systems will have more detailed data elements

on participants. Upon receiving information from the FCR regarding

participants in another State or States, States will be expected to use

the Child Support Enforcement Network (CSENet) to ascertain any

additional information on a participant that the State may need.

The information we are proposing to require under this paragraph

implements section 453(h) requirements for establishment and

maintenance of an automated Federal Case Registry of Support Orders.

With respect to domestic violence information identified in item 10

above and addressed under paragraph (f)(1)(x) of this proposal, section

453(b)(2) of the Act states that no information in the Federal Parent

Locator Service shall be disclosed to any person if the State has

notified the Secretary that the State has reasonable evidence of

domestic violence or child abuse and the disclosure of such information

could be harmful to the custodial parent or the child of such parent.

Unless otherwise specified in section 453(b)(2), OCSE will not disclose

any information on a participant in a IV-D case or non-IV-D support

order to any person if the State has included a ``family violence''

indicator on such participant.

Under proposed paragraph (f)(2), the CSES must request and exchange

information with the Federal parent locator service for the purposes

specified in section 453 of the Act. As stipulated in statute, the

Secretary will not disclose information received under section 453 of

the Act when to do so would contravene the national policy or security

interests of the United States or the confidentiality of census data or

as indicated above if the Secretary has received notice of reasonable

evidence of domestic violence or child abuse and the disclosure of such

information could be harmful to the custodial parent or the child of

such parent.

Under proposed paragraph (f)(3), the CSES must exchange information

with State agencies, both within and outside of the State,

administering programs under title IV-A and title XIX of the Act, as

necessary to perform State agency responsibilities under the Child

Support Enforcement program.

Under the proposed paragraph (f)(4), the CSES must exchange

information with other agencies of the State, and agencies of other

States, and interstate information networks, as necessary and

appropriate, to assist the State and other States in carrying out the

Child Support Enforcement program.

Security and Confidentiality for Computerized Support Enforcement

Systems

With the mandates of the Family Support Act of 1988, and most

recently of PRWORA, State public assistance agencies have been given

additional tools to locate individuals involved in child support cases

and visitation and custody orders and their assets. These tools are

used in conjunction with or operate through the State's automated

[[Page 14407]]

data processing (ADP) system. With the use of these Automated Data

Processing (ADP) systems, and the data they maintain and manipulate,

come inevitable concerns about the security and privacy of the

sensitive and confidential personal, demographic, and financial

information resident in these systems. In order to protect this

information, our regulations require that States must have policies and

procedures in place to ensure the integrity and validity of their

automated data processing systems.

Under current rules, States must conduct reviews of automated

systems to ensure their security and assess vulnerability, and maintain

reports of those reviews for HHS to examine should circumstances

warrant. Further, Federal OCSE certification requirements for automated

child support systems likewise have specific requirements and

objectives relative to physical and operational security, and of the

privacy of the data those systems maintain. In addition, numerous

Federal and State agencies that share data with States' child support

agencies also impose varying degrees of regulatory restriction on the

availability, privacy, security and use of the data exchanged. A

primary example is the restrictions imposed by the U.S. Department of

Treasury's Internal Revenue Service on the income tax refund and 1099

program information provided to States' child support agencies.

Language in PRWORA further strengthens these security requirements,

clearly addressing the concerns all Americans have for the privacy of

personal information while recognizing the need for effective program

administration.

We are proposing to reiterate statutory requirements in section

454A(d) of the Act addressing security and privacy issues by adding new

regulations at 45 CFR 307.13, ``Security and confidentiality for

computerized support enforcement systems in operation after October 1,

1997.''

Proposed paragraph (a) would require the State IV-D agency to have

safeguards on the integrity, accuracy, completeness of, access to, and

use of data in the CSES, including written policies concerning access

to data by IV-D agency personnel and sharing of data with other

persons. Under proposed paragraph (a)(1), these policies must address

access to and use of data to the extent necessary to carry out the IV-D

program. This includes the access to and use of data by any individual

involved in the IV-D program, including personnel providing IV-D

services under a cooperative or purchase-of-service agreement or other

arrangement.

Under the proposed paragraph (a)(2), these policies must specify

the data that may be used for particular IV-D program purposes, and the

personnel permitted access to such data. This provision applies to all

personnel who have access to data on the CSES.

Under the proposed paragraph (a)(3) these policies must specify the

non-IV-D purposes for which and the non-IV-D persons to whom data may

be disclosed.

Paragraph (b), as proposed, would require the State IV-D agency to

monitor routine access and use of the computerized support enforcement

system through methods such as audit trails and feedback mechanisms to

guard against and identify unauthorized access or use. States have

flexibility in meeting this requirement, so long as the IV-D agency

monitors routine access and use of the system.

Proposed paragraph (c) would require the State IV-D agency to have

procedures to ensure that all personnel, including State and local

staff and contractors, who may have access to or be required to use

confidential program data in the CSES are: (1) Informed of applicable

requirements and penalties, including those in section 6103 of the

Internal Revenue Service Code, and (2) adequately trained in security

procedures. Under this requirement, State procedures must address

Federal and State safeguarding requirements, including the safeguarding

of information regulations at 45 CFR 303.21 and 303.70(d)(2), and the

security and safeguarding requirements for data obtained from the

Internal Revenue Service. (See IRS publication 1075, entitled ``Tax

Information Security Guidelines for Federal, State and Local

Agencies.'' This publication was sent to the IV-D agency in each State

by OCSE.)

Finally, paragraph (d) would require the IV-D agency to have

administrative penalties, including dismissal from employment, for

unauthorized access to, disclosure or use of confidential information.

The intent of Congress in PRWORA is clear with regard to systems and

data security: we must ensure that adequate safeguards are in place to

protect the privacy of those we serve. In drafting these regulations,

we have attempted to err on the side of comprehensiveness when

addressing the needs of security in our automated data processing

systems, but to do so without injecting a greater Federal presence in

the operation of States' child support enforcement systems. To that

end, we are seeking comments from all sectors of the child support

program, not just those concerned with the operation of States'

automated data processing systems. Further, we are seeking comment in

all areas of computer systems security and data privacy relative to

these proposed regulations, be it the safety and security of data

center operations and equipment, personnel security, data availability

and access within the program, and the control of data gathered from

and shared with outside agencies. We are also interested in whether

these proposed regulations should be more prescriptive in all or part,

relative to security and privacy, or whether there are other venues to

ensure and/or strengthen data and systems security, such as through

formal written guidance manuals, enhanced system certification

requirements, action transmittals, training, or a more visible Federal

presence and oversight in this area.

Approval of Advance Planning Documents

The regulations at 45 CFR 307.15 speak to certain APD requirements

specific to CSE automated system development and we are proposing in

these rules to make conforming amendments to address the changes made

by PRWORA and as indicated previously, to codify certain existing

requirements and authorities related to APD and APDU oversight.

Specifically we are proposing to revise 45 CFR 307.15, ``Approval of

advance planning documents for computerized support enforcement

systems,'' to reflect new functional requirements the State must meet

by October 1, 2000.

Currently, paragraph (b)(2) requires that the APD specify how the

objectives of the system will be carried out throughout the State,

including a projection of how the proposed single State system will

meet the functional requirements and encompass all political

subdivisions of the State by October 1, 1997.

Federal law now requires each State to have in operation by October

1, 1997, a statewide CSES that meets specified functional requirements,

and a statewide system that also meets additional functional

requirements by October 1, 2000. Therefore, the proposed paragraph

(b)(2) would require that the APD specify how the objectives of a CSES

that meets the functional requirements in Sec. 307.10 of the

regulations, or the functional requirements in Sec. 307.11 of the

regulations, will be carried out throughout the State including a

projection of how the proposed system

[[Page 14408]]

will meet the functional requirements and encompass all political

subdivisions of the State by October 1, 1997, or also meet the

additional functional requirements and encompass all political

subdivisions of the State by October 1, 2000.

Under this proposal, the State may submit a separate APD for each

group of functional requirements. The State may also update its current

APD for the development and implementation of a system to meet the

October 1, 1997, requirements in order to address the functional

requirements that must be met by October 1, 2000. We also propose to

replace the citation ``Sec. 307.10'' with the citations ``Secs. 307.10,

or 307.11'' where it appears in paragraphs (a), (b), and (c).

A number of States experienced difficulty in developing systems

that complied with Family Support Act requirements and, as a

consequence, failed to meet the October 1, 1997, deadline for having

such systems in place. As a result, OCSE has reviewed the Federal and

State experience over the past several years and based on that review,

we are putting into place administratively a number of improvements in

the Federal and State oversight process. In addition, we are proposing

several changes to these regulations that will strengthen the oversight

and management of CSE systems development projects.

Continuing a trend begun last year, we will be more aggressively

monitoring State CSE development efforts. We intend to conduct on-site

technical assistance visits and reviews in all States this year, as we

did last year. States whose system development efforts are lagging will

receive multiple visits. We are in the process of procuring the

services of one or more contractors to augment our ability to monitor

States progress and provide project assistance.

In addition, we will be more closely reviewing State APD and APDU

submissions. One area of focus will be on the resources available to:

(1) Monitor the progress of systems development efforts, (2) assess

deliverables, and (3) take corrective action if the project goes

astray. Using our current regulatory authority, we will not approve a

State's APD unless we are convinced that adequate resources and a well

conceived project management approach are available for these purposes,

as well as for the systems design and implementation processes.

Most States already retain Quality Assurance assistance, using

either contractors or State staff. We will not approve a State's APD

unless it evidences adequate quality assurance services. These services

may be procured from the private sector, or may be provided by State

staff, e.g., a State's information technology office, State auditor,

State data center, etc. States with a history of troubled systems

development efforts will have to rigorously demonstrate that such

resources are available to the project and are integrated into the

project's management. We will require that all reports prepared by a

State's quality assurance provider be submitted directly to OCSE at the

same time they are submitted to the State's project management.

Further, we intend to more systematically determine and monitor key

milestones in States' CSE systems development efforts, and to more

closely tie project funding to those milestones. Systems should be

implemented in phased, successive modules as narrow in scope and brief

in duration as practicable, each of which serves a specific part of the

overall child support mission and delivers a measurable benefit

independent of future modules. To that end, we are proposing to add

language to Sec. 307.15(b)(9) to clarify that the APD must contain an

estimated schedule of life-cycle milestones and project deliverables

(modules) related to the description of estimated expenditures by

category. We would also include in the proposed regulation a list of

milestones which must be addressed as provided in the ``DHHS State

Systems Guide'' (September 1996). These life cycle milestones should

include, where applicable, developing the general and/or detailed

system designs, preparing solicitations and awarding contracts for

contractor support services, hardware and software, developing a

conversion plan, test management plan, installation plan, facilities

management plan, training plan, user's manuals, and security and

contingency plans; converting and testing data, developing, modifying

or converting software, testing software, training staff, installing,

testing and accepting systems. Specifically, we are proposing that the

APD must include milestones relative to the size, complexity and cost

of the project and at a minimum address: Requirements analysis, program

design, procurement and project management.

We will treat seriously States' failure to meet critical milestones

and deliverables or to report promptly and fully on their progress

toward meeting those milestones. We will approach these problems in

several ways. States shall reduce risk by using, when possible, fully-

tested pilots, simulations or prototypes that accurately model the

full-scale system; establish clear measures and accountability for

project progress, and secure substantial worker involvement and buy-in

throughout the project.

With respect to funding, we will generally provide funding under an

approved APD only for the most immediate milestones and funding related

to achievement of later milestones will be contingent upon the

successful completion of antecedent milestones. For States with proven

track records in CSE systems development, we will continue our practice

of providing funding approval on an annual basis. Since current

regulations provide sufficient authority to limit funding in this way,

we are not proposing any additional regulatory changes but rather

reaffirming in this preamble management practices which we will follow

under existing authority.

In addition, we are proposing to revise Sec. 307.15(b)(10) to

expand the requirements for an implementation plan and backup

procedures. This proposed language would require certain States to

obtain independent validation and verification services (IV&V). These

States would include those: (1) That do not have in place a statewide

automated child support enforcement system that meets the requirements

of the FSA of 1988; (2) States which fail to meet a critical milestone,

as identified in their APDs; (3) States which fail to timely and

completely submit APD updates; (4) States whose APD indicates the need

for a total system redesign; (5) States developing systems under

waivers pursuant to section 452(d)(3) of the Social Security Act or,

(6) States whose system development efforts we determine are at risk of

failure, significant delay, or significant cost overrun.

With respect to this last item, we would point out that Year 2000

systems compliance is critical to State child support enforcement

program automation efforts. Accordingly, the requirement above would

apply to States which are not Year 2000 compliant and which do not have

an existing assessment and monitoring mechanism in place. We would

consider any such state at serious risk of systems failure.

OCSE will carefully review States' system development efforts,

using States' APD and APDU submissions, other documentation, on-site

reviews and monitoring, etc., relating to States' efforts to meet

PRWORA requirements. Based on this review, OCSE may

[[Page 14409]]

determine that a State must obtain Independent Validation and

Verification (IV&V) services and will so require as a condition of its

approval of the State's APD and associated funding or contract-related

documents. OCSE is in the process of hiring an Independent Validation

and Verification (IV&V) contractor to assist in making this

determination.

Independent validation and verification efforts must be conducted

by an entity that is independent from the State. We would only provide

very limited exceptions to this requirement based on a State's request.

For example, we would consider an exception in a situation where a

State has an existing IV&V provider in place which is independent of

the child support agency (or other entity responsible for systems

development), which meets all criteria set forth in these rule and

where the State's systems development efforts are on track as a result.

The independent validation and verification provider must:

• Develop a project workplan. The plan must be provided

directly to OCSE at the same time it is given to the State.

• Review and make recommendations on both the management of

the project, both State and vendor, and the technical aspects of the

project. The results of this analysis must be provided directly to OCSE

at the same time it is given to the State.

• Consult with all stakeholders and assess the user

involvement and buy-in regarding system functionality and the system's

ability to meet program needs.

• Conduct an analysis of past project performance (schedule,

budget) sufficient to identify and make recommendations for

improvement.

• Provide a risk management assessment and capacity planning

services.

• Develop performance metrics which allow tracking of

project completion against milestones set by the State.

The RFP and contract for selecting the IV&V provider must be

submitted to OCSE for prior approval and must include the experience

and skills of the key personnel proposed for the IV&V analysis. In

addition, the contract must specify by name the key personnel who

actually will work on the project.

ACF recognizes that many States already have obtained IV&V

services. OCSE will review those arrangements to determine if they meet

the criteria specified above.

The requirement that a State obtain an IV&V provider if it

significantly misses one or more milestones in their APD is intended to

assist the State in obtaining an independent assessment of their system

development project. The IV&V provider will make an independent

assessment and recommendations for addressing the systemic problems

that resulted in the missed milestones before the situation reaches the

point where suspension of the State's APD and associated Federal

funding approval is necessary. Any reports prepared by an IV&V provider

must be submitted to OCSE at the same time they are submitted to the

State's project manager.

In addition, if a State fails to meet milestones in its APD, OCSE

may fully or partially suspend the APD and associated funding. OCSE

currently has authority under 45 CFR 307.40 to suspend a State's APD if

``the system ceases to comply substantially with the criteria,

requirements, and other provision of the APD * * *'' This action may

include suspension of future systems efforts under the APD until

satisfactory corrective action is taken. In such cases, funding for

current efforts, i.e., those not affected by the suspension, would

continue to be available, although OCSE would closely monitor such

expenditures. In more serious cases, suspension would involve cessation

of all Federal funds for the project until such time as the State

completed corrective action.

We invite comments on this approach as well as suggestions for

alternative actions for addressing missed milestones.

Related to this discussion, the Department has recently been

discussing with our partners, including State staff, representatives of

the corporate community, and other Federal agencies, the need to re-

examine the processes associated with development of State systems.

Many issues and concerns have been raised in these discussions,

including the contracting process and risk sharing among the partners.

There is broad consensus among the partners that a re-examination

of the processes associated with development of State systems is

necessary. DHHS is committed to moving forward with this process with

the goal of implementing changes that will facilitate and improve State

system development efforts. We would expect that this process would

build upon a recent effort, termed the ``Information Technology

Partnership,'' which resulted in changes in policies regarding system

transfers, depreciation and expensing, and increases in the thresholds

for prior Federal approval of certain APDs and contracts.

Review and Certification of Mandatory Automated Systems

We are proposing to revise 45 CFR 307.25, ``Review and

certification of computerized support enforcement systems,'' by

replacing the citation ``Sec. 307.10'' with the citations

``Secs. 307.10, or 307.11'' in the introductory language to reflect

other changes made in this document.

FFP Availability

We are proposing to revise Sec. 307.30, ``Federal financial

participation at the 90 percent rate for computerized support

enforcement systems'', to reflect changes made to section 455(a)(3) of

the Act by section 344(b)(1) of PRWORA regarding the limited extension

of 90 percent Federal financial participation.

Currently, paragraph (a) of the regulation provides that, until

September 30, 1995, Federal financial participation was available at

the 90 percent rate in expenditures for the planning, design,

development, installation or enhancement of a computerized support

enforcement system as described in Secs. 307.5 and 307.10, if specific

conditions are met. Federal law extends the availability of FFP at the

90 percent rate until September 30, 1997, for such activities included

in an approved APD or APDU submitted on or before September 30, 1995.

Therefore, proposed paragraph (a) would specify that financial

participation is available at the 90 percent rate for expenditures made

during Federal fiscal years 1996 and 1997 for the planning, design,

development, installation or enhancement of a CSES as described in

Secs. 307.5 and 307.10, but limited to the amount in an APD or APDU

submitted on or before September 30, 1995, and approved by OCSE.

Currently, paragraph (b) provides that Federal funding at the 90

percent rate is available in expenditures for the rental or purchase of

hardware and proprietary operating/vendor software during the planning,

design, development, installation, enhancement or operation of a CSES

described in Secs. 307.5 and 307.10.

To reflect the statutory changes discussed earlier, paragraph

(b)(1), as proposed, would provide Federal funding at the 90 percent

rate until September 30, 1997, on a limited basis in accordance with

paragraph (a) of this section for such expenditures.

Similarly, under proposed paragraph (b)(2), FFP is available at the

90 percent rate until September 30, 1997, for expenditures for the

rental or purchase

[[Page 14410]]

of proprietary operating/vendor software necessary for the operation of

hardware during the planning, design, development, installation or

enhancement of a computerized support enforcement system in accordance

with the limitations in paragraph (a) of this section, and the OCSE

guideline entitled ``Automated Systems for Child Support Enforcement: A

Guide for States.'' FFP at the 90 percent rate remains unavailable for

proprietary applications software developed specifically for a CSES.

(See OCSE-AT-96-10 dated December 23, 1996 regarding the procedures for

requesting and claiming 90 percent Federal funding.)

ACF has issued proposed regulations at 63 FR 10173, on March 2,

1998, to implement the provisions in section 455(a)(3)(B) of the Act,

regarding the availability and allocation of Federal funding at the 80

percent rate for Statewide systems.

With respect to regular funding, we are proposing to amend 45 CFR

307.35, ``Federal financial participation at the applicable matching

rate for computerized support enforcement systems'', by replacing the

citation ``Sec. 307.10'' with the citations ``Secs. 307.10, or 307.11''

in paragraph (a) to reflect other changes made in this document.

Suspension of APD Approval

Similar to the above, we are proposing to amend 45 CFR 307.40,

``Suspension of approval of advance planning document for computerized

support enforcement systems'', to make a conforming change to replace

the citation ``Sec. 307.10'' with the citations ``Secs. 307.10, or

307.11'' in paragraph (a) to reflect other changes made in this

document.

Executive Order 12866

Executive Order 12866 requires that regulations be drafted to

ensure that they are consistent with the priorities and principles set

forth in the Executive Order. The Department has determined that this

proposed rule is consistent with these priorities and principles. The

proposed changes in this rule, including IV-D State plan amendments,

new functional requirements for CSESs, and limited extension of 90

percent Federal funding, reiterate the language in the statute, and do

not add any non-statutory requirements.

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis

The Regulatory Flexibility Act (Pub. L. 96-354) requires the

Federal government to anticipate and reduce the impact of regulations

and paperwork requirements on small entities. The Secretary certifies

that these proposed regulations will not have a significant economic

impact on a substantial number of small entities because the primary

impact of these regulations is on State governments.

Paperwork Reduction Act

Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 104-13, all

Departments are required to submit to the Office of Management and

Budget (OMB) for review and approval any reporting or recordkeeping

requirements inherent in a proposed or final rule. Interested parties

may comment to OMB on these recordkeeping requirements as described

below. This NPRM contains information collection requirements in

Secs. 302.85(a)(1) and (2), 307.11 (e) and (f), 307.13(a) and (c), and

307.15(b)(2) which the Department has submitted to OMB for its review.

More specifically, Secs. 302.85(a)(1) and (2) include IV-D State

plan amendments; Secs. 307.11(e) and (f) include procedures for

establishing a State Case Registry (SCR) and for providing information

to the Federal Case Registry (FCR), Sec. 307.13(a) includes written

policies concerning access to data by IV-D agency personnel and sharing

of data with other persons to carry out IV-D program activities,

Sec. 307.13(c) includes procedures that all personnel with access to or

use of confidential data in the CSES be informed of applicable

requirements and penalties, and receive training in security

procedures, and Sec. 307.15 describes several requirements for an

advance planning document for a Statewide computerized support

enforcement system.

The respondents to the information collection requirements in this

rule are the State child support enforcement agencies of the 50 States,

the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands.

The respondents also include the courts that handle family, juvenile,

and/or domestic relations cases within the 50 States, the District of

Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. The Department

requires this collection of information: (1) To determine compliance

with the requirements for a Statewide computerized support enforcement

system; (2) to determine State compliance with statutory requirements

regarding informing IV-D personnel of integrity and security

requirements for data maintained in the CSES; and (3) for States to

make funding requests through advance planning documents, and APD

updates.

These information collection requirements will impose the estimated

total annual burden on the States described in the table below.

Information Collection Number of Respondents Responses per Respondent Average Burden per Response Total Annual Burden
302.85 (a)(1) and (2) 27 1 .5 13.5
307.11(f)(1) 54   114.17 6,165
307.11(f)(1) 54 1 46.27 2,499
307.11(f)(1) 54 162,963 .083 730,400
307.11(f)(1) 54 52 1.41 3,959
307.11 (e)(2)(ii) 54 25,200 .046 62,597
307.11(e)(1)(ii) 3,045 447 .029 39,472
307.13 (a) and (c) 27 1 16.7 451
307.15 (APD) 9.33 1 240 2239
307.15 (APDU) 62.33 1 60 3740
      Total 851535.5

 

The Administration for Children and Families will consider comments

by the public on the proposed information collection in:

• Evaluating whether the proposed collections are necessary

for the proper performance of the functions of ACF, including whether

the information will have practical utility;

• Evaluating the accuracy of ACF's estimate of the burden of

the proposed

[[Page 14411]]

collection of information, including the validity of the methodology

and assumptions used;

• Enhancing the quality, usefulness, and clarity of the

information to be collected; and

• Minimizing the burden of the collection of information on

those who have to respond, including the use of appropriate automated,

electronic, mechanical, or other technology to permit electronic

submission of responses.

OMB is required to make a decision concerning the collection of

information contained in these proposed regulations between 30 and 60

days after publication of this document in the Federal Register.

Therefore, a comment is best assured of having its full effect if OMB

receives it within 30 days of publication. Written comments to OMB for

the proposed information collection should be sent directly to the

following: Office of Management and Budget, Paperwork Reduction

Project, 725 17th Street, NW., Washington, DC 20503, Attn: Ms. Wendy

Taylor.

List of Subjects

45 CFR Part 302

Child support, Grant programs--social programs, Reporting and

recordkeeping requirements, Unemployment compensation.

45 CFR Part 304

Child support, Grant programs--social programs, Penalties,

Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Unemployment compensation.

45 CFR Part 307

Child support, Grant programs--social programs, Computer

technology, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

(Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Program No. 93.563, Child

Support Enforcement Program.)

Dated: March 6, 1998.

Olivia A. Golden,

Assistant Secretary for Children and Families.

Approved: March 17, 1998.

Donna E. Shalala,

Secretary, Department of Health and Human Services.

For the reasons set forth in the preamble, 45 CFR parts 302, 304

and 307 are proposed to be amended as set forth below.

PART 302--STATE PLAN REQUIREMENTS

1. The authority citation for part 302 continues to read as

follows:

Authority: 42 U.S.C. 651 through 658, 660, 664, 666, 667, 1302,

1396a(a)(25), 1396b(d)(2), 1396b(o), 1396b(p) and 1396(k).

Sec. 302.85 [Amended]

2. Section 302.85 is amended by revising paragraph (a) to read as

follows:

* * * * *

(a) General. The State plan shall provide that the State will have

in effect a computerized support enforcement system:

(1) By October 1, 1997, which meets all the requirements of title

IV-D of the Act which were enacted on or before the date of enactment

of the Family Support Act of 1988 in accordance with Sec. 307.5 and

Sec. 307.10 of this chapter and the OCSE guideline entitled ``Automated

Systems for Child Support Enforcement: A Guide for States.'' This guide

is available from the Child Support Information Systems Division,

Office of State Systems, ACF, 370 L'Enfant Promenade, SW., Washington,

DC 20447; and

(2) By October 1, 2000, which meets all the requirements of title

IV-D of the Act enacted on or before the date of enactment of the

Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996

in accordance with Sec. 307.5 and Sec. 307.11 of this chapter and the

OCSE guideline referenced in paragraph (a)(1) of this section.

* * * * *

PART 304--FEDERAL FINANCIAL PARTICIPATION

1. The authority citation for part 304 continues to read as

follows:

Authority: 42 U.S.C. 651 through 655, 657, 1302, 1396a(a)(25),

1396b(d)(2), 1396b(o), 1396b(p), and 1396(k).

Sec. 304.20 [Amended]

2. In Sec. 304.20, reference to ``Until September 30, 1995'' in

paragraph (c) is revised to read ``Until September 30, 1997''.

PART 307--COMPUTERIZED SUPPORT ENFORCEMENT SYSTEMS

1. The authority citation for part 307 is revised to read as

follows:

Authority: 42 U.S.C. 652 through 658, 664, 666, through 669A,

and 1302.

Sec. 307.0 [Amended]

2. Section 307.0 is amended by revising the introductory text;

redesignating paragraphs (c) through (h) as paragraphs (d) through (i);

and adding a new paragraph (c) to read as follows:

* * * * *

This part implements sections 452(d) and (e), 454(16) and (24) and

454A, and 455(a)(1)(A) and (B), and (a)(3)(A) of the Act which

prescribe:

* * * * *

(c) Security and confidentiality requirements for computerized

support enforcement systems;

* * * * *

Sec. 307.1 [Amended]

3. Section 307.1 is amended by redesignating paragraphs (b) through

(j) as paragraphs (c) through (k); replacing the citation

``Sec. 307.10'' with the citations ``Secs. 307.10, or 307.11'' in the

newly designated paragraphs (d) and (g); and adding a new paragraph (b)

to read as follows:

* * * * *

(b) Business day means a day on which State offices are open for

business.

* * * * *

Sec. 307.5 [Amended]

4. Section 307.5 is amended by removing paragraphs (a) and (b);

redesignating paragraphs (c) through (h) as paragraphs (b) through (g);

replacing the citation ``Sec. 307.10'' with the citations

``Secs. 307.10, or 307.11'' in the newly redesignated paragraph (d);

and adding a new paragraph (a) to read as follows:

* * * * *

(a) Basic requirement.

(1) By October 1, 1997, each State must have in effect an

operational computerized support enforcement system, which meets

Federal requirements under Sec. 302.85(a)(1). OCSE will review each

system to certify that these requirements are met; and

(2) By October 1, 2000, each State must have in effect an

operational computerized support enforcement system, which meets

Federal requirements under Sec. 302.85(a)(2). OCSE will review each

system to certify that these requirements are met.

* * * * *

5. Section 307.10 is amended in the introductory text by replacing

the citation ``Sec. 302.85(a)'' with the citation

``Sec. 302.85(a)(1)''; replacing ``AFDC'' with ``TANF'' in paragraph

(b)(10); removing paragraph (b)(14); redesignating paragraphs (b)(15)

and (16) as paragraphs (b)(14) and (15); and revising the section

heading to read as follows:

Sec. 307.10 Functional requirements for computerized support

enforcement systems in operation by October 1, 1997.

* * * * *

6. Section 307.11 is added to read as follows:

[[Page 14412]]

Sec. 307.11 Functional requirements for computerized support

enforcement systems in operation by October 1, 2000.

At a minimum, each State's computerized support enforcement system

established and operated under the title IV-D State plan at

Sec. 302.85(a)(2) must:

(a) Be planned, designed, developed, installed or enhanced, and

operated in accordance with an initial and annually updated APD

approved under Sec. 307.15 of this part;

(b) Control, account for, and monitor all the factors in the

support collection and paternity determination processes under the

State plan. At a minimum, this includes the following:

(1) The activities described in Sec. 307.10, except paragraphs

(b)(3), (8) and (11); and

(2) The capability to perform the following tasks with the

frequency and in the manner required under, or by this chapter:

(i) Program Requirements. Performing such functions as the

Secretary may specify related to management of the State IV-D program

under this chapter including:

(A) Controlling and accounting for the use of Federal, State and

local funds in carrying out the program either directly or through an

interface with State financial management and expenditure information;

and

(B) Maintaining the data necessary to meet Federal reporting

requirements under this chapter in a timely basis as prescribed by the

Office;

(ii) Allocation of Performance Indicators. Enabling the Secretary

to determine the incentive payments and penalty adjustments required by

sections 452(g) and 458 of the Act by:

(A) Using automated processes to:

(1) Maintain the requisite data on State performance for paternity

establishment and child support enforcement activities in the State;

and

(2) Calculate the paternity establishment percentage for the State

for each fiscal year;

(B) Having in place system controls to ensure the completeness, and

reliability of, and ready access to, the data described in paragraph

(b)(2)(i)(A)(1) of this section, and the accuracy of the calculation

described in paragraph (b)(2)(i)(A)(2) of this section; and

(iii) System Controls: Having systems controls (e. g., passwords or

blocking of fields) to ensure strict adherence to the policies

described in Sec. 307.13(a); and

(3) Activities described in Title III of the Personal

Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 not

otherwise addressed in this part.

(c) Collection and Disbursement of Support Payments. To the maximum

extent feasible, assist and facilitate the collection and disbursement

of support payments through the State disbursement unit operated under

section 454B of the Act through the performance of functions which, at

a minimum, include the following:

(1) Transmission of orders and notices to employers and other

debtors for the withholding of income:

(i) Within 2 business days after receipt of notice of income, and

the income source subject to withholding from a court, another State,

an employer, the Federal Parent Locator Service, or another source

recognized by the State; and

(ii) Using uniform formats prescribed by the Secretary;

(2) Ongoing monitoring to promptly identify failures to make timely

payment of support; and

(3) Automatic use of enforcement procedures, including procedures

under section 466(c) of the Act if payments are not timely;

(d) Expedited Administrative Procedures. To the maximum extent

feasible, be used to implement the expedited administrative procedures

required by section 466(c) of the Act.

(e) State Case Registry. Have a State case registry that meets the

requirements of this paragraph.

(1) Definitions. When used in this paragraph and paragraph (f) of

this section, the following definitions shall apply.

(i) Participant means an individual who owes or is owed support or

with respect to or on behalf of whom a support obligation is sought to

be established or other individual connected to an order of support or

a child support case being enforced.

(ii) Participant type means the custodial party, non-custodial

parent, putative father, or child, associated with a case or support

order contained in the Federal case registry.

(iii) locate request type refers to the purpose of the request for

locate services to the Federal case registry. For example, paternity

establishment, parental kidnapping or custody and visitation.

(iv) locate source type refers to the external sources a locate

submitter desires the Federal case registry to match against.

(2) The State case registry shall contain a record of:

(i) Every case receiving child support enforcement services under

an approved State plan; and

(ii) Every support order established or modified in the State on or

after October 1, 1998.

(3) Standardized data elements shall be included for each

participant. These data elements shall include:

(i) Names;

(ii) Social security numbers;

(iii) Dates of birth;

(iv) Case identification numbers;

(v) Other uniform identification numbers;

(vi) Data elements required under paragraph (f)(1) of this section

necessary for the operation of the Federal case registry; and

(vii) Any other information that the Secretary may require as set

forth in instructions issued by the Office.

(4) The record shall include information for every case in the

State case registry receiving services under an approved State plan

that has a support order in effect. The information must include:

(i) The amount of monthly (or other frequency) support owed under

the order;

(ii) Other amounts due or overdue under the order including

arrearages, interest or late payment penalties and fees;

(iii) Any amounts described in paragraph (e)(4)(i) and (ii) of this

section that have been collected;

(iv) The distribution of such collected amounts;

(v) The birth date and, beginning no later than October 1, 1999,

the name and social security number of any child for whom the order

requires the provision of support; and

(vi) The amount of any lien imposed in accordance with section

466(a)(4) of the Act to enforce the order.

(5) Establish and update, maintain, and regularly monitor case

records in the State case registry for cases receiving services under

the State plan. To ensure information on an established IV-D case is up

to date, the State should regularly update the system to make changes

to the status of a case, the participants of a case, and the data

contained in the case record. This includes the following:

(i) Information on administrative actions and administrative and

judicial proceedings and orders related to paternity and support;

(ii) Information obtained from comparison with Federal, State or

local sources of information;

(iii) Information on support collections and distributions; and

(iv) Any other relevant information.

(6) States may link local case registries of support orders through

an automated information network in meeting paragraph (e)(2)(ii) of

this section provided that all other requirements of this paragraph are

met.

(f) Information Comparison and other Disclosure of Information.

Extract

[[Page 14413]]

information, at such times and in such standardized format or formats,

as may be required by the Secretary, for purposes of sharing and

comparing with, and receiving information from, other data bases and

information comparison services, to obtain or provide information

necessary to enable the State, other States, the Office or other

Federal agencies to carry out this chapter. As applicable, these

comparisons and disclosures must comply with the requirements of

section 6103 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 and the requirements

of section 453 of the Act. The comparisons and sharing of information

include:

(1) Effective October 1, 1998, (or for the child data, not later

than October 1, 1999 the State furnishing the following information to

the Federal case registry, including updates as necessary and notices

of expiration of support orders, on participants in cases receiving

services under the State plan, and in non-IV-D support orders

established or modified on or after October 1, 1998:

(i) State Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) code and

optionally, county code;

(ii) State case identification number;

(iii) State member identification number;

(iv) Case type (IV-D, non-IV-D);

(v) Social security number and any necessary alternative social

security numbers;

(vi) Name, including first, middle, last name and any necessary

alternative names;

(vii) Sex (optional);

(viii) Date of birth;

(ix) Participant type (custodial party, non-custodial parent,

putative father, child);

(x) Family violence indicator (domestic violence or child abuse);

(xi) Indication of an order;

(xii) Locate request type (optional);

(xiii) Locate source (optional); and

(xiv) Any other information the Secretary may require as set forth

in instructions issued by the Office.

(2) Requesting or exchanging information with the Federal parent

locator service for the purposes specified in section 453 of the Act;

(3) Exchanging information with State agencies, both within and

outside of the State, administering programs under titles IV-A and XIX

of the Act, as necessary to perform State agency responsibilities under

this chapter and under such programs; and

(4) Exchanging information with other agencies of the State, and

agencies of other States, and interstate information networks, as

necessary and appropriate, to assist the State and other States in

carrying out the purposes of this chapter.

7. Section 307.13 is added to read as follows:

Sec. 307.13 Security and Confidentiality for computerized support

enforcement systems in operation after October 1, 1997.

The State IV-D agency shall:

(a) Information Integrity and Security. Have safeguards on the

integrity, accuracy, completeness of, access to, and use of data in the

computerized support enforcement system. These safeguards shall include

written policies concerning access to data by IV-D agency personnel,

and the sharing of data with other persons to:

(1) Permit access to and use of data to the extent necessary to

carry out the State IV-D program under this chapter; and

(2) Specify the data which may be used for particular IV-D program

purposes, and the personnel permitted access to such data;

(3) Limit access and disclosure to non-IV-D personnel or for Non-

IV-D program purposes as authorized by Federal law.

(b) Monitoring of access. Monitor routine access to and use of the

computerized support enforcement system through methods such as audit

trails and feedback mechanisms to guard against, and promptly identify

unauthorized access or use;

(c) Training and Information. Have procedures to ensure that all

personnel, including State and local staff and contractors, who may

have access to or be required to use confidential program data in the

computerized support enforcement system are:

(1) Informed of applicable requirements and penalties, including

those in section 6103 of the Internal Revenue Service Code and section

453 of the Act; and

(2) Adequately trained in security procedures; and

(d) Penalties. Have administrative penalties, including dismissal

from employment, for unauthorized access to, disclosure or use of

confidential information.

Sec. 307.15 [Amended]

8. Section 307.15 is amended by replacing the citation

``Sec. 307.10'' with the citations ``Secs. 307.10, or 307.11'' in

paragraphs (a), (b), and (c); and revising paragraph (b)(2), (b)(9) and

(b)(10) to read as follows:

* * * * *

(b) * * *

(2) The APD must specify how the objectives of the computerized

support enforcement system in Secs. 307.10, or 307.11 will be carried

out throughout the State; this includes a projection of how the

proposed system will meet the functional requirements of Secs. 307.10,

or 307.11 and how the single State system will encompass all political

subdivisions in the State by October 1, 1997, or October 1, 2000

respectively.

* * * * *

(9) The APD must contain a proposed budget and schedule of life-

cycle milestones relative to the size, complexity and cost of the

project which at a minimum address requirements analysis, program

design, procurement and project management; and, a description of

estimated expenditures by category and amount for:

(i) Items that are eligible for funding at the enhanced matching

rate, and

(ii) items related to developing and operating the system that are

eligible for Federal funding at the applicable matching rate;

(10) The APD must contain an implementation plan and backup

procedures to handle possible failures in system planning, design,

development, installation or enhancement.

(i) These backup procedures must include provision for independent

validation and verification (IV&V) analysis of a State's system

development effort in the case of States:

(A) that do not have in place a statewide automated child support

enforcement system that meets the requirements of the FSA of 1988;

(B) States which fail to meet a critical milestone, as identified

in their APDs;

(C) States which fail to timely and completely submit APD updates;

(D) States whose APD indicates the need for a total system

redesign;

(E) States developing systems under waivers pursuant to section

452(d)(3) of the Social Security Act; or,

(F) States whose system development efforts we determine are at

risk of failure, significant delay, or significant cost overrun.

(ii) Independent validation and verification efforts must be

conducted by an entity that is independent from the state (unless the

State receives an exception from OCSE) and the entity selected must:

(A) Develop a project workplan. The plan must be provided directly

to OCSE at the same time it is given to the State.

(B) Review and make recommendations on both the management of the

project, both State and vendor, and the technical aspects of the

project. The IV&V provider must provide the results of its analysis

directly to OCSE at the same time it reports to the State.

[[Page 14414]]

(C) Consult with all stakeholders and assess the user involvement

and buy-in regarding system functionality and the system's ability to

meet program needs.

(D) Conduct an analysis of past project performance sufficient to

identify and make recommendations for improvement.

(E) Provide a risk management assessment and capacity planning

services.

(F) Develop performance metrics which allow tracking project

completion against milestones set by the State.

(iii) The RFP and contract for selecting the IV&V provider (or

similar documents if IV&V services are provided by other State

agencies) must include the experience and skills of the key personnel

proposed for the IV&V analysis and specify by name the key personnel

who actually will work on the project and must be submitted to OCSE for

prior approval.

* * * * *

Sec. 307.25 [Amended]

9. Section 307.25 is amended by replacing the citation

``Sec. 307.10'' with the citations ``Secs. 307.10, or 307.11'' in the

introductory text.

10. Section 307.30 is amended by revising paragraph (a)

introductory text and paragraph (b) to read as follows:

* * * * *

(a) Conditions that must be met for FFP. During Federal fiscal

years 1996, and 1997, Federal financial participation is available at

the 90 percent rate in expenditures for the planning, design,

development, installation or enhancement of a computerized support

enforcement system as described in Secs. 307.5 and 307.10 of this

chapter limited to the amount in an advance planning document, or APDU

submitted on or before September 30, 1995, and approved by OCSE if:

* * * * *

(b) Federal financial participation in the costs of hardware and

proprietary software. (1) Until September 30, 1997, FFP at the 90

percent rate is available in expenditures for the rental or purchase of

hardware for the planning, design, development, installation or

enhancement of a computerized support enforcement system as described

in Sec. 307.10 in accordance with the limitation in paragraph (a) of

this section.

(2) Until September 30, 1997, FFP at the 90 percent rate is

available for expenditures for the rental or purchase of proprietary

operating/vendor software necessary for the operation of hardware

during the planning, design, development, installation or enhancement

of a computerized support enforcement system in accordance with the

limitation in paragraph (a) of this section, and the OCSE guideline

entitled ``Automated Systems for Child Support Enforcement: A Guide for

States.'' FFP at the 90 percent rate is not available for proprietary

application software developed specifically for a computerized support

enforcement system. (See Sec. 307.35 of this part regarding

reimbursement at the applicable matching rate.)

* * * * *

Sec. 307.35 [Amended]

11. Section 307.35 is amended by replacing the citation

``Sec. 307.10'' with the citations ``Secs. 307.10, or 307.11'' in

paragraph (a).

Sec. 307.40 [Amended]

12. Section 307.40 is amended by replacing the citation

``Sec. 307.10'' with the citations ``Secs. 307.10, or 307.11'' in

paragraph (a).

[FR Doc. 98-7714 Filed 3-24-98; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4150-04-P