A BILL TO BE ENTITLED AN ACT REQUIRING A COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL SERVICES (DSS) TO VERIFY WHETHER AN APPLICANT FOR OR RECIPIENT OF TEMPORARY ASSISTANCE FOR NEEDY FAMILIES (TANF) BENEFITS OR FOOD AND NUTRITION SERVICES (FNS) BENEFITS IS A FLEEING FELON OR A PROBATION OR PAROLE VIOLATOR, TO DIRECT INTERAGENCY COOPERATION AND INFORMATION SHARING IN ORDER TO VERIFY THE ELIGIBILITY STATUS OF AN APPLICANT OR RECIPIENT, TO DENY TANF OR FNS BENEFITS TO AN APPLICANT OR RECIPIENT WHO IS A FLEEING FELON OR A PROBATION OR PAROLE VIOLATOR, AND TO REQUIRE DRUG SCREENING AND TESTING FOR CERTAIN APPLICANTS AND RECIPIENTS OF WORK FIRST PROGRAM ASSISTANCE.
Senate committee substitute to the 3rd edition makes the following changes.
Amends GS 108A-29.1 to delete the current requirements for identification and treatment and to instead require drug screening for each applicant or recipient of Work First Program (WFP) assistance when the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) reasonably suspects the person is engaged in the illegal use of controlled substances. Makes the person who is tested responsible for the cost of the drug screening. Directs DHHS to provide notice of drug screening to each applicant or recipient. Also specifies that the applicant or recipient be advised that the drug screening may be avoided if the applicant or recipient does not apply for WFP assistance. Provides that dependent children under the age of 18 are exempt from the requirements of this section. Lists additional requirements which DHHS is to enforce under this section.
Provides that if an individual tests negative for controlled substances, DHHS is to increase the amount of the initial WFP assistance in an amount equal to the cost the applicant or recipient paid for the drug testing. Designates a person who tested positive for controlled substances as ineligible for WFP assistance for one year from the date of the positive drug test, except permits the ineligible person to reapply for WFP if the person can document the successful completion of a substance abuse treatment program offered by area mental health authorities and licensed by DHHS. Requires that the person reapplying pass a drug test. Provides that the cost of any drug testing and substance abuse program is the responsibility of the person being tested or receiving treatment. Provides additional guidelines regarding ineligibility for persons who test positive for controlled substances more than once.
Directs the Social Services Commission to adopt rules for the testing of applicants and recipients under this section.
Deletes provision that permitted the requirements of this section under current law to the waived or modified as necessary in the case of individual applicants or recipients to the degree necessary to comply with Medicaid eligibility provisions.
Provides that a criminal record check of a WFP applicant or recipient that shows a conviction, arrest, or outstanding warrant within three years before the date the check is conducted relating to illegal controlled substances constitutes reasonable suspicion that requires drug testing.
Requires that DHHS report to the General Assembly by July 1, 2014, on the implementation of the act.
Adds a severability clause to the act.
Changes the effective date of the act from July 1, 2013, to October 1, 2013.
Amends the act's short and long titles.
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