SS Update - January 2018
Key Highlights This Month:
The Super Bowl is coming to downtown Minneapolis and the festivities will impact where we serve our clients. Walk-in services for human services clients, including financial assistance and child support services, will not be generally available in our downtown service center and family justice center the week of January 29 through February 2, but they are available in all other service locations and can be accessed in person or by phone. Other service location addresses are available on our website www.hennepin.us
Economic Assistance and Employment Supports Division:
Software upgrades to two DHS platforms:
PolicyQuest is now on a new platform. Counties will now be able to look up questions where answers are still pending and can attachment documents to the questions you submit. Programs are under three different categories: Disability Services, Aging Programs and CFS Programs. Public assistance programs are under the category CFS programs. https://policyquest.dhs.state.mn.us/
SIR has been upgraded to a new version. Functions are the same, but the look is cleaner and a little more modern.
Child Care Assistance Program/CCAP:
- On 12/8/17 DHS CCAP finished the last in-person training on new CCAP policies. Trainings included policy changes as well as case examples. DHS CCAP received positive feedback from training participants.
- On 12/11/17 the Federal and State Changes to the Child Care Assistance Program - Phase 3 Bulletin was published.
- On 12/13/17 Information about Phase 3 changes was presented at the MEC2 Mentor Meeting.
- On 12/18/17 Phase 3 changes became effective. The CCAP Policy Manual was published to include Phase 3 changes and Phase 3 changes were successfully installed in MEC2. The MEC2 User Manual is not yet updated to reflect new changes and functionality.
- On 12/22/17 a memo about the Phase 3 changes and MEC2 functionality was emailed to CCAP administrative and client access contacts. The memo focused on guidance to counties related to families who experienced changes before Phase 3 policies were implemented and announced the delay to implementing high-risk medical enrolled provider category for Schedule Reporters.
- On 12/26/2017 an updated version of the FAQ was published with answers to questions about Phase 3. This was posted on the SIR resource page. DHS plans to continue posting updated versions on a regular basis.
- DHS CCAP staff are working on several worker tip sheets related to policy changes.
- DHS CCAP staff continue to work on reviewing County Child Care Fund Plans. Correction letters have been sent to many counties. Two-thirds of plans have been approved.
Child Support Division (CSD)
- The next Child Support Advisory Board meeting is on March 7, 2018
- Child Support Director Jeff Jorgenson has accepted a new position at DHS. Beginning in January Jeff will be Business Integrations Director. In this capacity, he will provide strategic direction, leadership toward the development of programs and initiatives that support integrated service delivery. The director position is posted for applicants.
Ongoing Program Work
- Abandoned Funds project. Every year thousands of child support dollars that have been collected do not get used by families due to uncashed checks, Reliacard funds not accessed, or unidentified payments. Funds are considered abandoned if not used within 3 years and are turned over to the MN Department of Commerce and/or the federal Office of Child Support Enforcement. Funds can still be recovered by the owner if they are turned over. CSD has created a new process and improved reports that will help counties and the state partner to reach out to families who have funds they have not accessed.
- Point of Sale project. PayNearMe is a way for non-custodial parents to make cash payments at CVS, Family Dollar and Casey’s General stores. This will make it easier for people to make payments, especially the unbanked, or those who are not in jobs where income withholding is in place. Counties should see fewer walk-in and a reduction in cash payments receipted at county offices.
Requested Actions Needed From MACSSA:
New Trends in This Area:
Issues/Concerns Regarding This Topic:
Child Care Assistance Program/CCAP
See Bulletin # 17-68-19 for changes that took effect September 25, 2017: Federal and State Changes to the Child Care Assistance Program – Phase 1
See Bulletin # 17-68-22 for changes that took effect October 23, 2017: Federal and State Changes to the Child Care Assistance Program - Phase 2
See Bulletin # 17-68-26 for changes that took effect December 18, 2017: Federal and State Changes to the Child Care Assistance Program - Phase 3
Contact(s): Barb Dahl and Brad Thiel; Casey White, Tris Skophammer, Debra Schlick, Nicole Fethem