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TANF-ACF-PA-2009-01 (The Emergency Fund for TANF Programs)

Published: April 3, 2009
Audience:
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
Topics:
Data Collection and Reporting
Types:
Policy Announcements (PA)
Tags:
TANF Emergency Fund

To:

State, Territory, and Tribal agencies administering the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Program

Subject:

The Emergency Fund for TANF Programs

Reference:

Section 403(c) of the Social Security Act.

Purpose:

To provide initial guidance regarding the newly established Emergency Fund.

Background:

On February 17, 2009, the President signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act), which establishes the Emergency Contingency Fund for State TANF Programs (Emergency Fund) as section 403(c) of the Social Security Act (the Act). This legislation provides up to $5 billion to help States, Territories, and Tribes in fiscal year (FY) 2009 and FY 2010 that have an increase in assistance caseloads or in certain types of expenditures. The Recovery Act made additional changes to TANF – extending supplemental grants through FY 2010, expanding flexibility in the use of TANF funds carried over from one fiscal year to the next, and adding a hold-harmless provision to the caseload reduction credit for States and Territories serving more TANF families. This policy announcement only addresses the Emergency Fund. 

The Emergency Fund is intended to build upon and renew the principles of work and responsibility that underlie successful welfare reform initiatives. Like other provisions of the Recovery Act, the Emergency Fund provides resources to States, Territories, and Tribes to support work and families during this difficult economic period.

The same financial and programmatic rules pertaining to the appropriate use of the jurisdiction’s Federal TANF block grant funds also apply when using the emergency funds. This also means that all TANF requirements, including work participation requirements and time limits, apply to families receiving assistance with emergency funds exactly as they do to families receiving other Federal TANF-funded assistance.

The Emergency Fund should not be confused with the TANF Contingency Fund in section 403(b) of the Act that currently provides money to qualifying States (but not Territories or Tribes) during an economic downturn.

The Recovery Act calls on the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) to implement the Emergency Fund “as quickly as possible pursuant to appropriate guidance.” In that spirit, we are issuing this policy announcement to provide preliminary guidance to help agencies administering TANF programs understand the maximum emergency funding they can receive and the information we anticipate requiring of them to determine the amounts for which they qualify. Agencies may apply for these funds immediately by submitting the information described in the statute while we work to develop specific reporting forms and instructions.

SUMMARY OF EMERGENCY FUND STATUTE:

Emergency Fund grants are available to States, Territories, and Tribes (referred to collectively in this guidance as “jurisdictions”) if they meet any of the following three conditions for a quarter during FY 2009 or FY 2010:

  1. The jurisdiction's average monthly assistance caseload in the quarter is higher than its average monthly assistance caseload for the corresponding quarter of the Emergency Fund base year, and its expenditures for basic assistance in the quarter are higher than its expenditures for such assistance in the corresponding quarter of the Emergency Fund base year.
  2. The jurisdiction's expenditures for non-recurrent short-term benefits in the quarter are higher than its expenditures for such benefits in the corresponding quarter of the Emergency Fund base year.
  3. The jurisdiction's expenditures for subsidized employment in the quarter are higher than such expenditures in the corresponding quarter of the Emergency Fund base year.

For each category above, a jurisdiction that qualifies may request 80 percent of the amount by which Federal TANF expenditures and qualified State expenditures (i.e., maintenance-of-effort (MOE)) in the quarter for which it is requesting emergency funds exceed such expenditures in the corresponding base-year quarter. Under the law, the Emergency Fund base year is the lesser of FY 2007 or FY 2008 for a category. In other words, for the first category it is the year with the lower average monthly assistance caseload; for the second, it is the year with the lower non-recurrent short-term benefit expenditures; for the third, it is the year with the lower subsidized employment expenditures. A jurisdiction may request emergency funds under any or all of the three categories.

The law imposes a cumulative cap on the amount of emergency funding that a jurisdiction can receive for the two-year period. Cumulative combined grants from the existing Contingency Fund (section 403(b)) and the Emergency Fund (section 403(c)) cannot exceed 50 percent of the jurisdiction’s annual Federal TANF family assistance grant. For example, if a State’s Federal TANF family assistance grant is $100 million, the State could receive no more than $50 million in funding from both the TANF Contingency Fund and the Emergency Fund combined during the two-year period. We have included a table (Attachment A) listing the maximum funding that each jurisdiction could receive from the Emergency Fund. Any State that receives contingency funds in FY 2009 or FY 2010 should subtract those contingency funds from the maximum listed in the table.

The statute also specifies that this new Emergency Fund is disregarded from the limitation on total payments to Territories in sections 1108(a) and (c) of the Act. This means that Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Virgin Islands may apply for and receive emergency funds if eligible, even if the Territory has reached its payment ceiling for that fiscal year.

The Recovery Act gives HHS authority to make appropriate adjustments to caseload and expenditure data on a jurisdiction-by-jurisdiction basis to ensure that the data are comparable “with respect to the groups of families served and the types of aid provided.” It also allows us to develop a mechanism for collecting expenditure data that includes reasonable estimates and permits us to set deadlines for revising data. We discuss our expected policies concerning adjustments below.

Emergency Fund grants are Federal TANF funds, and, under the Recovery Act, a jurisdiction must use these funds in accordance with section 404 of the Act. Please note that this does not include authority to transfer emergency funds to either the Social Services Block Grant or the Child Care and Development Block Grant because that transfer authority is limited to grants made under section 403(a) of the Act. Emergency funds are available until expended. Per section 404(e) of the Act, a jurisdiction may carry over emergency funds for use in a succeeding fiscal year.

HHS IMPLEMENTATION EXPECTATIONS

Purpose of Emergency Funds

As we explained above, the Emergency Fund provides grants equal to 80 percent of a jurisdiction’s increased TANF and MOE expenditures on basic assistance, non-recurrent short-term benefits, and subsidized employment – all forms of aid that can help families unable to find jobs or with low earnings weather this difficult economic time. We would like to stress the flexibility inherent in these funds and urge you to consider carefully the best way to make use of this opportunity to help needy families. For example, a jurisdiction could: find ways to make its basic assistance programs more accessible; expand short-term emergency help to needy families facing eviction, utility shut-offs, or the need to pay a security deposit to secure housing; and expand subsidized employment programs that can provide wage-paying jobs when too few exist in the private labor market.

Definitions

Because the statute uses terminology already defined in current regulations and data collection instruments, we anticipate using these existing definitions. For your convenience, we have included these definitions as Attachment B.

Expenditure Data

We expect to ask jurisdictions to report expenditure data directly on an application form to request emergency funds. The intent is to reflect expenditures made for a quarter (as opposed to those reported in a quarter, for example on Form ACF-196). Expenditures during a quarter, whether during the base year or for a quarter for which a jurisdiction is requesting emergency funds, should reflect the amount actually expended (or estimated to be expended) for that particular quarter, irrespective of when the expenditures were claimed on the applicable financial report. For example, the expenditures for basic assistance should equal the amount that the jurisdiction paid to provide basic assistance benefits to families for the quarter. While expenditures you submit to apply for emergency funds should be consistent with those you report on your respective TANF financial reports (e.g., the ACF-196 for States), they may not be the same as the amounts reported on any given quarter’s financial report. This is because those TANF financial reports often reflect adjustments to prior data and because the timing of claims on those reports does not necessarily have to correspond to the period of expenditure.

Under the current State TANF Financial Report (ACF-196) and respective reports for Territories and Tribes, a jurisdiction may have reported similar expenditures in several different categories. For example, a jurisdiction could report “emergency cash assistance” under a category called “Other” or under “Non-recurrent short-term benefits.” When applying for emergency funds, it is important for a jurisdiction to submit expenditure data that is comparable for each quarter of the base year and for each quarter for which it is requesting emergency funds, regardless of the categories it used for those expenditures on its TANF Financial Report. We anticipate that a jurisdiction would only report this way on the form we are developing to implement the Emergency Fund; it would not have to modify past TANF Financial Data reports, as those reports are not used in awarding emergency funds.

Estimates

To facilitate the awarding of funds as quickly as possible, we anticipate that we will accept reasonable estimates for caseload and expenditure data. We intend to review these estimates and compare them to prior reported data. If a jurisdiction estimates a substantial increase in expenditures, we would expect it to explain the nature of the change it has made to its program. We expect to allow a jurisdiction to submit such estimated data up to one month before the beginning of a quarter. A jurisdiction would then revise these estimates on subsequent quarterly submissions until it has submitted final caseload and expenditure figures. The form and instructions we are developing will specify timeframes for submitting final data. As jurisdictions revise these data, we would revise the award amounts accordingly.

Adjustments

The statute gives HHS the authority to adjust caseload and expenditure data to ensure that comparisons between the request year and the base year are valid – that is, that the comparison is “apples to apples.” This adjustment language is intended to ensure that a jurisdiction that has made changes to the structure of its program or funding sources has neither a disadvantage nor an advantage because of those changes. Without the adjustment provision, a jurisdiction could fail to qualify for emergency funding if, for example, it began a solely State-funded assistance program after October 1, 2006. Similarly, a jurisdiction could be awarded more emergency funds than it should reasonably receive if it were to end a solely State-funded assistance program that had been in place in the base year and did not make the appropriate adjustments.

If a jurisdiction has not changed the structure of its programs in any of the three categories since the beginning of the base year, there may be no need to adjust its caseload or expenditure data. For a jurisdiction that has made structural changes in these programs, we may need to adjust data to ensure that the two periods are comparable. In general, we expect to adjust a jurisdiction’s base-year data so that it is comparable to the program it now operates. For example, if a jurisdiction established a solely State-funded assistance program since October 1, 2006, then it would need to provide estimates of what its caseload and assistance expenditures would have been if the solely State-funded program now in place had existed in the base year. Similarly, if a jurisdiction ended a solely State-funded assistance program and those families were now served in TANF, an adjustment to the base year also would be in order. Or, suppose a jurisdiction had a non-recurrent short-term program (e.g., a front-end or “pre-TANF” program) in place in the base year but terminated that program and now provides all newly approved applicants with standard TANF/MOE assistance. In this case, we would likely adjust the jurisdiction’s base-year caseload and expenditure data – both the basic assistance expenditures and the non-recurrent short-term benefits expenditures – to account for this program change and ensure that the data in the request quarter and the base-year quarter are comparable.

Similarly, we expect to adjust data so that a jurisdiction is neither rewarded nor penalized in the amount of emergency funds it receives due to the timing of its expenditures. For example, suppose a jurisdiction paid its subsidized employment contractor in a different quarter in the request year from the base year, making it appear as though the program grew when it did not. In such a case, we would likely make adjustments to smooth out the expenditures across quarters to represent more fairly and accurately the spending in that category in the two years. It is difficult for us to anticipate every possible scenario in which we might need to adjust data, but our guiding principle is that the Emergency Fund is intended to provide jurisdictions that increase expenditures in any of these areas with additional funding; the adjustment language will help us ensure that we carry out this mandate.

For a year in which a jurisdiction requests emergency funds in any quarter, we anticipate that it will need to provide expenditure data for all four quarters in each of the categories for which it is requesting funding, although not necessarily as part of its initial request. This will help us assure that the timing of expenditures is not a factor in the award.

It is important to understand that we are only proposing to adjust data related to shifts of expenditures affecting the three funding categories, including shifts into or out of a solely State-funded program. For example, a change to a time limit or sanction policy that restricts eligibility or a change to earnings disregards or family grants that expands eligibility would not require adjustment. The Emergency Fund is intended to provide extra help where a jurisdiction faces increased costs for basic assistance, non-recurrent short term benefits, or subsidized employment. If caseloads or expenditures fall or rise because of policy changes unrelated to a funding shift, we think those policy changes are accurately reflected in basic expenditure and caseload data and do not warrant any adjustment.

Timing

HHS will work cooperatively with jurisdictions to implement the Emergency Fund provisions as quickly as possible. The Department understands that many jurisdictions need these funds to maintain and expand essential benefits and services. We will respond to questions about the provision in a timely fashion and review the data submitted for both the base year and request quarters promptly. As we indicate below, you should direct your questions to the ACF Office in your Region. Both the ACF Regional and Central Offices will be working closely together to ensure that you have the most accurate and up-to-date information possible.

We are making every effort to expedite the process of making emergency funding available. Although we expect that the application form will be approved quickly, a jurisdiction may apply for emergency funds before the form has been approved for use by submitting the information described in the statute. At this time, a jurisdiction may apply for the first three quarters of FY 2009. We expect to contact you within two weeks of receiving your request, either to inform you of the amount of your award or to request further information concerning your application.

We will issue further guidance on funding approval in the event that requests for emergency funds exceed the Emergency Fund’s appropriation.

Accountability and Oversight

Information submitted in support of a request for emergency funds will be tested for reliability and accuracy. Accordingly, jurisdictions are expected, as required by the Federal regulations at 45 CFR 92.20 and 45 CFR 92.42, to maintain pertinent documentation related to caseload and expenditure data used to support the request for funds, be able to link the information to the relevant reporting and accounting system, and make such information available in a clear and understandable form that can be validated by an auditor.

Attachments:

  • Attachment A: Maximum Grant Awards under the TANF Emergency Fund
  • Attachment B: Definitions of Terms Cited in the TANF Emergency Fund Statute

Inquiries:  

We anticipate maintaining close contact with you throughout the implementation of the Emergency Fund. Please direct any inquiries to the TANF Program Manager in your Region.

 

/s/
Ann H. Barbagallo
Acting Director
Office of Family Assistance

 

 

Attachment A

 

FY 2008 State Family Assistance Grants and Maximum Emergency Fund Eligibility as of 10/1/20081
 
State  SFAG Allocation   Tribal Allotments  Applicable SFAG Allocation 50 Percent of FY 2009 SFAG
Alabama
93,315,207
-  
93,315,207
46,657,604
Alaska
63,609,072
17,188,259
46,420,813
23,210,407
Arizona
222,419,988
22,187,291
200,232,697
100,116,349
Arkansas
56,732,858
-  
56,732,858
28,366,429
California
3,733,817,784
73,942,742
3,659,875,042
1,829,937,521
Colorado
136,056,690
-  
136,056,690
68,028,345
Connecticut
266,788,107
-  
266,788,107
133,394,054
Delaware
32,290,981
-  
32,290,981
16,145,491
District Of Columbia
92,609,815
-  
92,609,815
46,304,908
Florida
562,340,120
-  
562,340,120
281,170,060
Georgia
330,741,739
-  
330,741,739
165,370,870
Guam
3,465,478
-
3,465,478
1,732,739
Hawaii
98,904,788
-  
98,904,788
49,452,394
Idaho
31,938,052
1,525,490
30,412,562
15,206,281
Illinois
585,056,960
-  
585,056,960
292,528,480
Indiana
206,799,109
-  
206,799,109
103,399,555
Iowa
131,524,959
531,007
130,993,952
65,496,976
Kansas
101,931,061
-  
101,931,061
50,965,531
Kentucky
181,287,669
-  
181,287,669
90,643,835
Louisiana
163,971,985
-  
163,971,985
81,985,993
Maine
78,120,889
-  
78,120,889
39,060,445
Maryland
229,098,032
-  
229,098,032
114,549,016
Massachusetts
459,371,116
-  
459,371,116
229,685,558
Michigan
775,352,858
-  
775,352,858
387,676,429
Minnesota
267,984,886
4,550,816
263,434,070
131,717,035
Mississippi
86,767,578
-  
86,767,578
43,383,789
Missouri
217,051,740
-  
217,051,740
108,525,870
Montana
45,534,006
7,494,890
38,039,116
19,019,558
Nebraska
58,028,579
514,978
57,513,601
28,756,801
Nevada
43,976,750
69,233
43,907,517
21,953,759
New Hampshire
38,521,261
-  
38,521,261
19,260,631
New Jersey
404,034,823
-  
404,034,823
202,017,412
New Mexico
126,103,156
15,525,056
110,578,100
55,289,050
New York
2,442,930,602
-  
2,442,930,602
1,221,465,301
North Carolina
302,239,599
-  
302,239,599
151,119,800
North Dakota
26,399,809
-  
26,399,809
13,199,905
Ohio
727,968,260
-  
727,968,260
363,984,130
Oklahoma
148,013,558
2,732,116
145,281,442
72,640,721
Oregon
167,924,513
1,125,884
166,798,629
83,399,315
Pennsylvania
719,499,305
-  
719,499,305
359,749,653
Puerto Rico
71,562,501
-  
71,562,501
35,781,251
Rhode Island
95,021,587
-  
95,021,587
47,510,794
South Carolina
99,967,824
-  
99,967,824
49,983,912
South Dakota
21,893,519
613,868
21,279,651
10,639,826
Tennessee
191,523,797
-  
191,523,797
95,761,899
Texas
486,256,752
-  
486,256,752
243,128,376
Utah
76,829,219
  
1,219,744
75,609,475
37,804,738
Vermont
47,353,181
-  
47,353,181
23,676,591
Virgin Islands
2,846,564
-
2,846,564
1,423,282
Virginia
158,285,172
-  
158,285,172
79,142,586
Washington
404,331,754
23,377,256
380,954,498
190,477,249
West Virginia
110,176,310
-  
110,176,310
55,088,155
Wisconsin
318,188,410
3,689,056
314,499,354
157,249,677
Wyoming
21,781,446
3,280,916
18,500,530
9,250,265
1SFAG allocations and Tribal allotments (and therefore the maximum Emergency Fund eligibility) may change during the fiscal year if there are changes in funding to Tribal TANF programs in a State.

 

 

FY 2009 Tribal Allotment and Maximum Emergency Fund Eligibility
 
Tribe State  Tribal
Allotment 
50 Percent of
FY 2009 Allotment
Association of Village Council Presidents, Inc
Alaska
5,420,841
2,710,421
Bad River Band of Lake Superior Tribe of Chippewa
Wisconsin
291,848
145,924
Blackfeet Nation
Montana
3,089,816
1,544,908
Bristol Bay Native Association
Alaska
1,216,441
608,221
Central Council of Tlingit & Haida Indians of Alaska1
Alaska
2,367,150
1,183,575
Chippewa Cree Tribe of the Rocky Boy's Reservation
Montana
1,258,657
629,329
Coeur d' Alene Tribe
Idaho
161,719
80,860
Confederated Salish & Kootenai Tribes1
Montana
2,139,915
1,069,958
Confederated Tribe of Siletz Indians1
Oregon
661,625
330,813
Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation
Washington
 
3,396,965
1,698,483
Cook Inlet Tribal Council, Inc.1
Alaska
5,428,077
2,714,039
Eastern Shoshone Tribe - Wind River Reservation1
Wyoming
1,640,458
820,229
Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria
California
1,570,412
785,206
Forest County Potawatomi Community
Wisconsin
115,793
57,897
Fort Belknap Community Council1
Montana
1,006,502
503,251
Hoopa Valley Tribe
California
1,212,239
606,120
Hopi Tribe
Arizona
628,740
 
314,370
Klamath Tribe
Oregon
464,259
 
232,130
Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa
Wisconsin
 
610,124
305,062
Lower Elwha S'Klallam Tribe
Washington
 
501,343
 
250,672
Lummi Nation
Washington
1,514,421
757,211
Menominee Indian Tribe of  Wisconsin
Wisconsin
 
1,267,930
633,965
Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe1
Minnesota
4,550,816
2,275,408
Morongo Band of Mission Indians
California
 
1,473,624
 
736,812
Muscogee (Creek) Nation
Oklahoma
2,312,788
1,156,394
Navajo Nation
Arizona (New Mexico, Utah)
 
31,174,026
15,587,013
Nez Perce Tribe
Idaho
 
504,990
 
252,495
Nooksack Indian Tribe
Washington
913,828
456,914
North Fork Rancheria
California
 
1,273,327
636,664
Northern Arapaho Tribe - Wind River Reservation
Wyoming
1,640,458
820,229
Oneida Tribe of Wisconsin
Wisconsin
 
835,924
417,962
Osage Tribe of Oklahoma
Oklahoma
 
419,328
 
209,664
Owens Valley Career Development Center
California
14,375,863
7,187,932
Pasqua Yaqui Tribe of Arizona
Arizona
 
1,729,965
864,983
Port Gamble S'Klallam Tribe1
Washington
516,580
258,290
Pueblo of Zuni1
New Mexico
 
801,389
400,695
Quileute Tribe
Washington
 
608,686
304,343
Quinault Indian Nation
Washington
1,695,135
847,568
Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewas
Wisconsin
347,120
 
173,560
Robinson Rancheria (California Tribal TANF Partnership)
California
 
6,296,016
3,148,008
Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community
Arizona
 
710,340
355,170
San Carlos Apache Tribe
Arizona
1,972,962
 
986,481
Scotts Valley Band of Pomo Indians
California
1,935,052
967,526
Shoshone-Bannock Tribes of the Ft. Hall Reservation1
Idaho
 
858,781
429,391
Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate of the Lake Traverse Reservation1
South Dakota
 
613,868
306,934
Soboba Band of Luiseno Indians
California
1,429,333
714,667
Sokaogon Chippewa Community - Mole Lake Band
Wisconsin
77,195
38,598
South Puget Inter-tribal Planning Agency
Washington
 
4,743,962
 
2,371,981
Southern California Tribal Chairmen's Association, Inc.
California
 
7,224,967
 
3,612,484
Spokane Tribe of Indians1
Washington
 
8,403,229
4,201,615
Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohican Indians
Wisconsin
143,122
 
71,561
Tanana Chiefs' Conference, Inc.1
Alaska
2,443,973
1,221,987
Torres Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indians
(Torres Martinez Tribal TANF Program)
California
 
20,058,817
10,029,409
Tulalip Tribes1
Washington
 
967,330
483,665
Upper Skagit Indian Tribe
Washington
 
115,777
 
57,889
Washoe Tribe of Nevada and California
California (Nevada)
14,034,049
7,017,025
White Mountain Apache Tribe
Arizona
 
1,914,669
957,335
Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska1
Nebraska (Iowa)
1,045,985
522,993
Yurok Tribe
California
1,273,264
636,632
1We will distribute Emergency Fund grants to Tribal TANF agencies operating within the P.L. 102-477 demonstration project through the Department of Interior.  All eligible Tribal TANF agencies must follow the reporting and accountability requirements governing the Emergency Fund; we will not waive those requirements because of a Tribe’s participation in the P.L. 102-477 demonstration project.  This includes quarterly, as opposed to annual, data reporting.

 

 

 

Attachment B

 

Definitions of Terms Cited in the TANF Emergency Fund Statute


The statute uses terminology already defined in regulations or various reporting instruments (i.e., the TANF Financial Report (ACF-196), the TANF Data Report (ACF-199), and the SSP-MOE Data Report (ACF-209), the Territorial Financial Report (ACF-196TR), and the Tribal Financial Reports (SF-269A, ACF-196T, or ACF-102-477 Financial Report 12g)). We anticipate that jurisdictions will submit information in accordance with these definitions.

Assistance caseload: This means the average monthly number of TANF and SSP-MOE cases receiving “assistance.” Consistent with 45 CFR 260.31(a) and 45 CFR 286.10(a), “assistance” includes cash, payments, vouchers, and other forms of benefits designed to meet a family's ongoing basic needs (i.e., for food, clothing, shelter, utilities, household goods, personal care items, and general incidental expenses). It includes such benefits even when they are provided in the form of payments by a TANF agency, or other agency on its behalf, to individual recipients and are conditioned on their participation in work experience or community service (or any other TANF work activity). It also includes supportive services such as transportation and child care provided to families who are not employed.

Basic assistance: Consistent with 45 CFR 260.31(a)(1) and (2), and with 45 CFR 286.10(a)(1), basic assistance means cash, payments, vouchers, and other forms of benefits designed to meet a family's ongoing basic needs (i.e., for food, clothing, shelter, utilities, household goods, personal care items, and general incidental expenses). It includes such benefits even when they are provided in the form of payments by a TANF agency, or other agency on its behalf, to individual recipients, and when they are conditioned on participation in work experience or community service (or any other work activity).

This is the same definition that the ACF-196 (line 5a) uses; it is not assistance that would be reported on line 5b, 5c, or 5d of the ACF-196 (child care, transportation or other supportive services, or assistance authorized solely under prior law, if it is not basic assistance.) It can include benefits regardless of whether the parent is working or the benefit is provided in what the jurisdiction considers its basic TANF program or in another program that serves a particular subgroup of families or a particular purpose (e.g., an earnings supplement program).

Non-recurrent short-term benefits: Consistent with the definition at 45 CFR 260.31(b)(1) and 45 CFR 286.10(b)(1), non-recurrent short-term benefits means benefits designed to deal with a specific crisis situation or episode of need, that are not intended to meet recurrent or ongoing needs, and that will not extend beyond four months. This is the same definition that the ACF-196 (line 6g) uses.

Note that these benefits include those provided directly to a family and those paid to others on behalf of the family, such as a payment to a landlord. Both families receiving other forms of “assistance” and families that do not otherwise receive ongoing assistance may receive non-recurrent short-term benefits.

Subsidized employment: There is no expenditure category called “subsidized employment” but subsidized employment activities are typically reported under the category “Work Subsidies” on TANF financial reports. Consistent with the definition at 45 CFR 260.31(b)(2) and at 45 CFR 286.10(b)(2), work subsidies means payments to employers or third parties to help cover the costs of employee wages, benefits, supervision, and training. This is the same definition that the ACF-196 (line 6a1) uses.

Note that some jurisdictions may in the past have reported some subsidized employment expenditures in categories other than “work subsidies” on their respective financial reports. Such a jurisdiction should nevertheless include all expenditures related to operating a subsidized employment program, including the cost of overseeing the program, developing work sites, and providing training to participants, when applying for funding.

Emergency Fund base year: FY 2007 or FY 2008, based on the fiscal year that has the lower assistance caseload (for the basic assistance category) or lower expenditures (for the non-recurrent short-term benefits and subsidized employment categories). The base year for a jurisdiction could be different for different expenditure categories. Since HHS may make adjustments to the caseload and expenditure data, the final base year for each category is the one that is the lesser after adjustments are made.