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8 LONG TITLE
9 General Description:
10 This bill modifies the Employment Support Act by requiring an applicant who
11 otherwise qualifies for cash assistance under Utah's Family Employment Program to
12 complete a written drug screening questionnaire and meet other requirements in order
13 to receive cash assistance under the program.
14 Highlighted Provisions:
15 This bill:
16 . requires a parent who otherwise qualifies for cash assistance under Utah's Family
17 Employment Program to complete a written questionnaire designed to determine the
18 likelihood of the parent having a substance use disorder;
19 . requires an applicant to submit to a drug test if the written questionnaire indicates a
20 reasonable likelihood that the applicant has a substance use disorder;
21 . requires an applicant who tests positive for a controlled substance to enter into and
22 follow an employment plan that includes the following to continue to receive cash
23 assistance under the Family Employment Program:
24 . receiving treatment for a substance use disorder; and
25 . testing negative on follow-up drug tests for a controlled substance;
26 . provides that refusing to take a drug test, failing a drug test, not entering into an
27 employment plan, or failing to successfully follow an employment plan's substance
28 use disorder treatment requirements, makes an applicant ineligible for cash assistance under the
29 Family Employment Program and for reapplication for cash assistance:
30 . for 90 days after a first occurrence within one year; or
31 . for one year after a second occurrence within one year; and
32 . makes technical changes.
33 Money Appropriated in this Bill:
35 Other Special Clauses:
37 Utah Code Sections Affected:
39 35A-3-302, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2009, Chapter 55
40 35A-3-304, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2011, Chapter 297
42 35A-3-304.5, Utah Code Annotated 1953
44 Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
45 Section 1. Section 35A-3-302 is amended to read:
46 35A-3-302. Eligibility requirements.
47 (1) The program of cash assistance provided under this part is known as the Family
48 Employment Program.
49 (2) (a) The division shall submit a state plan to the Secretary of the United States
50 Department of Health and Human Services to obtain federal funding under the Temporary
51 Assistance for Needy Families Block Grant.
52 (b) The division shall make the plan consistent with this part and federal law.
53 (c) If a discrepancy arises between a provision of the state plan and this part, this part
54 supersedes the provision in the state plan.
55 (3) The services and supports under this part are for both one-parent and two-parent
57 (4) To be eligible for cash assistance under this part, a family shall:
58 (a) have at least one minor dependent child; or
59 (b) have a parent who is in the third trimester of a pregnancy.
60 (5) In accordance with Title 63G, Chapter 3, Utah Administrative Rulemaking Act, the
61 department shall make rules for eligibility and the amount of cash assistance a family is eligible
62 to receive under this part based on:
63 (a) family size;
64 (b) family income;
65 (c) income disregards; [
66 (d) other relevant factors[
67 (e) if the applicant has met the eligibility requirements under Subsections (5)(a)
68 through (d), the assessment and other requirements described in Sections 35A-3-304 and
69 35A-3-304.5 .
70 (6) The division shall disregard money on deposit in an Individual Development
71 Account established under Section 35A-3-312 in determining eligibility.
72 (7) The department shall provide for an appeal of a determination of eligibility in
73 accordance with Title 63G, Chapter 4, Administrative Procedures Act.
74 (8) (a) The department shall make a report to either the Legislature's Executive
75 Appropriations Committee or the Commerce and Workforce Services Appropriations
76 Subcommittee on any proposed rule change made under Subsection (5) that would modify the
77 eligibility requirements or the amount of cash assistance a family would be eligible to receive.
78 (b) The department shall submit the report prior to implementing the proposed rule
79 change and the report shall include:
80 (i) a description of the department's current practice or policy that it is proposing to
82 (ii) an explanation of why the department is proposing the change;
83 (iii) the effect of an increase or decrease in cash benefits on families; and
84 (iv) the fiscal impact of the proposed change.
85 (c) The department may use the Notice of Proposed Rule Amendment form filed with
86 the Division of Administrative Rules as its report so long as the notice contains all the
87 information required under Subsection (8)(b).
88 Section 2. Section 35A-3-304 is amended to read:
89 35A-3-304. Assessment -- Participation requirements and limitations -- Mentors.
90 (1) (a) Within 20 business days of the date of enrollment, a parent client shall:
91 (i) be assigned an employment counselor; and
92 (ii) complete an assessment provided by the division regarding the parent client's:
93 (A) family circumstances;
94 (B) education;
95 (C) work history;
96 (D) skills; [
97 (E) ability to become self-sufficient[
98 (F) likelihood of a substance use disorder involving the misuse of a controlled
100 (b) The assessment provided under Subsection (1)(a)(ii) shall include:
101 (i) a survey to be completed by the parent client with the assistance of the division[
103 (ii) a written questionnaire to be completed by the parent client designed to accurately
104 determine the likelihood of the parent client having a substance use disorder involving the
105 misuse of a controlled substance.
106 (c) In addition to the other requirements of this part, if the results of the written
107 questionnaire taken by a parent client indicate a reasonable likelihood that the parent client has
108 a substance use disorder involving the misuse of a controlled substance, the parent client may
109 only receive cash assistance provided under this part in accordance with the additional
110 requirements of Section 35A-3-304.5 .
111 (2) (a) Within 15 business days of a parent client completing an assessment, the
112 division and the parent client shall enter into an employment plan.
113 (b) The employment plan shall have a target date for entry into employment.
114 (c) The division shall provide a copy of the employment plan to the parent client.
115 (d) As to the parent client, the plan may include:
116 (i) job searching requirements;
117 (ii) if the parent client does not have a high school diploma, participation in an
118 educational program to obtain a high school diploma, or its equivalent;
119 (iii) education or training necessary to obtain employment;
120 (iv) a combination of work and education or training;
121 (v) assisting the Office of Recovery Services in good faith to:
122 (A) establish the paternity of a minor child; and
123 (B) establish or enforce a child support order[
127 (e) If the parent client tests positive for the unlawful use of a controlled substance after
128 taking a drug test under Section 35A-3-304.5 , the employment plan shall include an agreement
129 by the parent client to participate in treatment for a substance use disorder and meet the other
130 requirements of Section 35A-3-304.5 .
132 (i) providing cash and other types of public and employment assistance, including child
134 (ii) assisting the parent client to obtain education or training necessary for employment;
135 (iii) assisting the parent client to set up and follow a household budget; and
136 (iv) assisting the parent client to obtain employment.
138 changed circumstances.
140 parent client shall:
141 (i) promptly commence a search for a specified number of hours each week for
142 employment; and
143 (ii) regularly submit a report to the division on:
144 (A) how time was spent in search for a job;
145 (B) the number of job applications completed;
146 (C) the interviews attended;
147 (D) the offers of employment extended; and
148 (E) other related information required by the division.
150 contained in an employment plan, the parent client shall promptly undertake a full-time
151 education or training program.
152 (ii) The employment plan may describe courses, education or training goals, and
153 classroom hours.
155 shall agree to make a good faith effort to comply with the employment plan.
156 (ii) If a parent client consistently fails to show good faith in complying with the
157 employment plan, the division may seek under Subsection (2)(i)(iii) to terminate all or part of
158 the cash assistance services provided under this part.
159 (iii) The division shall establish a process to reconcile disputes between a client and the
160 division as to whether:
161 (A) the parent client has made a good faith effort to comply with the employment plan;
163 (B) the division has complied with the employment plan.
164 (3) (a) Except as provided in Subsection (3)(b), a parent client's participation in
165 education or training beyond that required to obtain a high school diploma or its equivalent is
166 limited to the lesser of:
167 (i) 24 months; or
168 (ii) the completion of the education and training requirements of the employment plan.
169 (b) A parent client may participate in education or training for up to six months beyond
170 the 24-month limit of Subsection (3)(a)(i) if:
171 (i) the parent client is employed for 80 or more hours a month; and
172 (ii) the extension is for good cause shown and approved by the director.
173 (c) A parent client who receives an extension under Subsection (3)(b) remains subject
174 to Subsection (4).
175 (4) (a) A parent client with a high school diploma or equivalent who has received 24
176 months of education or training shall participate in full-time work activities.
177 (b) The 24 months need not be continuous and the department may define "full-time
178 work activities" by rule.
179 (5) As a condition for receiving cash assistance on behalf of a minor child under this
180 part, the minor child shall be:
181 (a) enrolled in and attending school in compliance with Sections 53A-11-101.5 and
182 53A-11-101.7 ; or
183 (b) exempt from school attendance under Section 53A-11-102 .
184 (6) This section does not apply to a person who has received diversion assistance under
185 Section 35A-3-303 .
186 (7) (a) The division shall recruit and train volunteers to serve as mentors for parent
188 (b) A mentor may advocate on behalf of a parent client and help a parent client:
189 (i) develop life skills;
190 (ii) implement an employment plan; or
191 (iii) obtain services and supports from:
192 (A) the volunteer mentor;
193 (B) the division; or
194 (C) civic organizations.
195 Section 3. Section 35A-3-304.5 is enacted to read:
196 35A-3-304.5. Drug testing requirements.
197 (1) If the results of a questionnaire described in Subsection 35A-3-304 (1) indicate a
198 reasonable likelihood that a parent client may have a substance use disorder involving the
199 misuse of a controlled substance, the division shall require the parent client to take a drug test
200 at the division's expense in order to continue to receive cash assistance under this part.
201 (2) If a parent client refuses to take a drug test required under Subsection (1), the
202 department shall terminate cash assistance under this part and the parent client may not reapply
203 for cash assistance under this part for:
204 (a) 90 days after a first refusal to take a drug test within one year; or
205 (b) one year after a second refusal to take a drug test within one year.
206 (3) A drug test given under this section shall be administered with due regard to the
207 privacy and dignity of the person being tested.
208 (4) Before taking a drug test under this section, a parent client may advise the person
209 administering the test regarding any prescription or over-the-counter medication the parent
210 client is taking.
211 (5) The result of a drug test given under this section is a private record in accordance
212 with Section 63G-2-302 and disclosure to a third party is prohibited except as provided under
213 Title 63G, Chapter 2, Government Records Access and Management Act.
214 (6) If a parent client tests negative for the unlawful use of a controlled substance after
215 taking a drug test under Subsection (1), the parent client remains eligible for cash assistance,
216 subject to the other eligibility requirements of this part.
217 (7) If a parent client tests positive for the unlawful use of a controlled substance after
218 taking a drug test under Subsection (1), the parent client:
219 (a) shall be given a list of approved substance use disorder treatment providers that are
220 available in the area in which the individual resides; and
221 (b) may continue to receive benefits if the parent client enters into and follows the
222 requirements of an employment plan, including:
223 (i) receiving treatment, at the division's expense, from an approved substance use
224 disorder treatment provider for at least 60 days;
225 (ii) testing negative for the unlawful use of a controlled substance:
226 (A) in each subsequent drug test required by division rule during treatment; and
227 (B) in an additional drug test given at the conclusion of treatment; and
228 (iii) meeting the other requirements of receiving cash assistance under this part.
229 (8) If a parent client declines to enter into an employment plan required by Subsection
230 (7), or if the parent client enters into, but fails to meet, a requirement of an employment plan
231 under Subsection (7), including if the parent client refuses to take a drug test required by the
232 employment plan or tests positive for the unlawful use of a controlled substance in a drug test
233 required by the employment plan, the department shall terminate cash assistance under this part
234 and the parent client may not reapply for cash assistance under this part for:
235 (a) except as provided in Subsection (8)(b), 90 days after the day on which the
236 department determines, under this Subsection (8), that the parent client is no longer eligible for
237 cash assistance; or
238 (b) one year after the day on which the department determines, under this Subsection
239 (8), that the parent client is no longer eligible for cash assistance, if the department has
240 previously determined on at least one other occasion in the past year that the parent client is no
241 longer eligible for cash assistance under this Subsection (8).
Legislative Review Note
as of 2-10-12 12:29 PM