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Tribal Child Support Program Waiver Request

TDCL-15-01

Published: October 14, 2015

TRIBAL DEAR COLLEAGUE LETTER

TDCL-15-01

DATE:  October 14, 2015

TO:  Tribal Child Support Directors

RE:  Tribal Child Support Program Waiver Request

Dear Colleague:

We have received questions regarding the process for requesting a waiver of the non-federal share of tribal child support program expenditures.  I understand that the FY 16 budgets of several tribal programs are negatively impacted by the federal restrictions around claiming rent as a non-federal share when the tribe owns the building.  Under 45 CFR Part 309, OCSE has the authority to grant a temporary waiver of part or all of the non-federal share of expenditures.  If appropriate, I encourage you to submit a waiver request. This letter provides information to assist you in submitting a temporary waiver in accordance with 45 CFR § 309.130(e).  Approval of a waiver request is not guaranteed.

Waiver Authority
The regulation at 45 CFR § 309.130(e) provides that, under certain circumstances, OCSE may grant a temporary waiver of part or all of the non-federal share of expenditures.  The provision permits two different types of temporary waiver requests that a tribe may submit for consideration: anticipated temporary request and emergency waiver request.

Anticipated Temporary Request
Under 45 CFR § 309.130(e)(1)(i), if a tribe or tribal organization anticipates that it will be temporarily unable to contribute part or all of the non-federal share of funding under paragraph (d) of this section, it must submit a written request that this requirement be temporarily waived.  A request for a waiver of part or all of the non-federal share must be sent to ACF, included with the submission of SF 424A, no later than 60 days prior to the start of the funding period for which the waiver is being requested, except as provided in paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section.  An untimely or incomplete request will not be considered.

Emergency Waiver Request
Under 45 CFR § 309.130(e)(1)(ii), if, after the start of the funding period, an emergency situation such as a hurricane or flood occurs such that the grantee would need to request a waiver of the non-federal costs, it may do so.  The request for a waiver must be submitted in accordance with the procedures specified in paragraphs (e)(2), (3) and (4) of this section.  Any waiver request other than one submitted with the initial application must be submitted as soon as the adverse effect of the emergency situation giving rise to the request is known to the grantee.

Waiver Request Content
Pursuant to § 309.130(e)(2), the content of the waiver request must include the following information.

  • A statement of the amount of the non-federal share that the tribe is requesting be waived;
  • A narrative statement describing the circumstances and justification for the waiver request;
  • Portions of the tribal budget for the funding period sufficient to demonstrate that any funding shortfall is not limited to the tribal IV-D program and that any uncommitted tribal reserve funds are insufficient to meet the non-federal funding requirement;
  • Copies of any additional financial documents in support of the request;
  • A detailed description of the attempts made to secure the necessary funds and in-kind contributions from other sources and the results of those attempts, including copies of all relevant correspondence; and
  • Any other documentation or other information that OCSE may require to make this determination.

In accordance with § 309.130(e)(3), the tribe or tribal organization must demonstrate that it temporarily lacks resources to provide the non-federal share.  In its request for a temporary waiver, the tribe or tribal organization must be able to demonstrate that it:

  • Lacks sufficient resources to provide the required non-federal share of costs;
  • Has made reasonable, but unsuccessful, efforts to obtain non-federal share contributions; and
  • Has provided all required information requested.

Additionally, in accordance with § 309.130(e)(4), all statements in support of a waiver request must be supported by evidence including, but not limited to, a description of how the tribe or tribal organization's circumstances relate to its capacity to provide child support enforcement services.  The tribe must submit documentary evidence sufficient to support the waiver.  Standing alone, the following statements will be considered insufficient to merit a waiver under this section: 

  • Funds have been committed to other budget items;
  • A high rate of unemployment;
  • A generally poor economic condition;
  • A lack of or a decline in revenue from gaming, fishing, timber, mineral rights and other similar revenue sources;
  • A small or declining tax base; and
  • Little or no economic development.

Approval and Duration of the Waiver
In accordance with § 309.130(e)(5), if approved, a temporary waiver submitted under § 309.130(e)(1)(i) or (ii) will expire on the last day of the funding period for which it was approved and is subject to review at any time during the funding period and may be revoked, if changing circumstances warrant.

Unless the tribe receives a written approval of its waiver request, the funding requirements stated in § 309.130(d) remain in effect.  If the request for a waiver is denied, the denial is not subject to administrative appeal per § 309.130(e)(5)(iii).

Submission
A tribe should submit the required information to request a temporary waiver, either anticipated or emergency, to Paige Hausburg, OCSE Tribal Coordinator, at Paige.Hausburg@acf.hhs.gov.  Please contact her if you have any questions or concerns regarding a temporary waiver of the non-federal share of program expenditures.

Sincerely,

Vicki Turetsky
Commissioner
Office of Child Support Enforcement

Last Reviewed: October 14, 2015

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