93.560: Family Support Payments to States: Assistance Payments (AFDC)

This program -- AFDC -- has been replaced by the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Program under provisions of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunities Reconciliation Act of 1996, P.L. 104-193.

The next update of the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance will describe this new program.

Popular Name: AFDC Maintenance Assistance - State Aid




Applicant Eligibility: State and local welfare agencies must operate under Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)-approved State Plans and agreements must comply with all Federal regulations governing aid and assistance to needy families with dependent children, aid to needy aged, blind or permanently and totally disabled persons in Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. State Plan changes may require up to 90 days for approval.

Beneficiary Eligibility:

Credentials/Documentation: Federal funds must go to a certified State welfare agency. Individuals must meet State eligibility requirements. Cost will be determined in accordance with OMB Circular No. A-87 for State and local governments, the Social Security Act, and Federal Regulations.


Preapplication Coordination: The standard application forms, as furnished by DHHS and required by OMB Circular No. A-102 for State and local governments, must be used for this program. Applications are available from the Administration for Children and Families (OFA/ACF) Regional Offices. (See Appendix IV of the Catalog for addresses.) This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.

Application Procedure: Eligible individuals should apply directly to their State or local welfare agency. States should contact the OFA/ACF Regional Administrators for application forms. (See Appendix IV of the Catalog for addresses.) OFA/ACF Regional Administrators have authority to approve applications and amendments; disapproval authority is held by the Assistant Secretary for Children and Families. States contact HHS Regional Offices for applications for administrative funds. This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-110.

Award Procedure: Once an application is approved, States are awarded funds quarterly based on ACF-approved estimates of maintenance assistance and administrative costs. Notification of awards must be made to the designated State agency. Individuals eligible for AFDC receive monthly subsistence checks from State welfare agencies. Child care costs may be paid directly to participant or to the provider or through use of the child care disregard.

Deadlines: Individuals may apply anytime to their local welfare agencies for Aid to Families with Dependent Children.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time: State or local welfare agencies must have a time standard for notifying applicants of approval/disapproval; not over 45 days after application, except 60 days for aid to disabled.

Appeals: Individuals denied assistance must be given a fair hearing on appeal (45 CFR, Chapter 2, Section 205.10). State agencies may request a hearing before the Assistant Secretary for Family Support regarding adverse decisions (45 CFR, Chapter 2, Section 201.14; 45 CFR, Part 16).

Renewals: Persons receiving assistance must have a face-to-face interview and be reviewed for eligibility every 12 months, except that AFDC recipients must be reviewed and approved every 6 months with at least one face-to-face interview annually unless the State has an approved alternative method. State Plans once approved remain in effect but parts may be amended or revised.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals: Not applicable.

Examples of Funded Projects: Not applicable.

Range & Average of Financial Assistance: $2,612,572 to $2,387,079,973; $192,951,570.


93.560 PROGRAM ACCOMPLISHMENTS: During fiscal year 1995, ACF provided grants to States to administer the Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) program to 4.9 million families comprising 14.2 million recipients. The average monthly payment per family was $383.30. The monthly caseload for fiscal year 1997 is estimated to rise to 4.7 million families and will include 13.1 million recipients. In addition, the average monthly benefit is estimated to increase to $385 per family.



Type of Assistance: Formula Grants.

Obligations: (Grants) FY 95 $14,113,207,000; FY 96 est $14,960,407,000; and FY 97 est $13,122,158,000.

Budget Account Number: 75-1501-0-1-609.

Authorization: Social Security Act, as amended, Title I, 42 U.S.C. 301-306; Title IV, Part A, 42 U.S.C. 601-617; Title X, 42 U.S.C. 1201-1206; Title XIV, 42 U.S.C. 1351-1355; Title XVI (AABD), 42 U.S.C. 1381 note - 1385 note; Title II, 42 U.S.C. 1302 and 1313; 24 U.S.C. 321-329; Public Laws 97-35, 97-248, 97-300, 98-369, 100-485, and 103-66.

Regulations, Guidelines, & Literature: ACF regulations are published in the Federal Register, 45 CFR 200 et seq.


Regional or Local Office: Individuals needing assistance should contact the local welfare agency. States should contact OFA/ACF Regional Offices. (See Appendix IV of the Catalog.)

Headquarters Office: Office of the Director, Office of Family Assistance, Administration for Children and Families, Department of Health and Human Services, 5th Floor, Aerospace Bldg., 370 L'Enfant Promenade, SW., Washington, DC 20447. Phone: (202) 401-9275. FTS is not available.


Formula & Matching Requirements: States have two options for matching rates. If a State does not have an approved medical plan, the statistical factors used for Federal sharing in assistance payments are: Grant funds pay five-sixths of the first $18 of the average paid monthly per person on AFDC and then 50% to 65% of the balance within the Federal average per person maximum of $32.00. The maximum is $100 per recipient for AFDC children in foster care.

If the State has an approved Medicaid Plan, it may elect to use the Medicaid formula with no maximum (provided the State has an approved Medicaid Plan) which may range from 50 to 83% Federal funds for total benefits paid, depending upon State per capita income levels. Under the Medicaid formula, the Federal share of payments for AFDC and the adult categories in Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands, is 75% (subject to statutory ceilings).

The Federal matching rate for State and local administration and training costs is 50%. The Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993 (P.L. 103-66) eliminated enhanced Federal matching for management information systems, certain fraud control activities, and certain activities to verify the legal status of resident aliens. These activities are matched at the 50% rate. Child care costs are funded under Title IV-A and are matched at the FMAP rate, with the exception of child care costs in Puerto Rico, Guam, the Virgin Islands, and American Samoa. Costs in Territories are matched at 75% under their funding caps. States are subject to fiscal disallowances for exceeding the national average error rate for all States in a given year.

Length & Time Phasing of Assistance: Individuals receive support from the State or local welfare agency until they no longer meet the eligibility requirements of the State. Eligibility for transitional child care is limited to 12 consecutive months, beginning with the month in which AFDC eligibility is lost due to either an increase in hours of work or earned income, or expiration of time-limited earned income disregards. Grant funds are awarded to States quarterly. The Electronic Transfer System will be used by States for monthly cash draws on the Federal Reserve Bank.

Uses & Use Restrictions: Cash payments are made directly to eligible needy families with dependent children and to needy aged, blind, or disabled persons in Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. These payments are to cover costs for food, shelter, clothing, and other daily living needs recognized as necessary by each State's program. Payments in the form of cash or vendor payments assist needy families or individuals for monthly income maintenance and child care or, for certain families with children in emergency or crisis situations, to prevent destitution. Funds for State and local administration of programs are for costs of interviewing public assistance applicants for eligibility determination and validation of eligibility; costs of providing child care; costs of State and local personnel engaged in program direction and management; and other on-going costs and activities related to administering the programs.


Reports: State must submit fiscal FSA-231 and statistical reports as required by the Secretary of HHS to ACF. A Treasury Report, TUS-5104, is required from the States each time funds are drawn and no less frequently than monthly.

Audits: States must have a quality control system to check on eligibility, overpayments and underpayments to recipients on a sampling basis. In addition, States must have a control system to assure that funds are paid in accordance with Public Law 100-485 and ACF Regulations. Audits are performed by the HHS Office of Inspector General. In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A-128, "Audits of State and Local Governments," State and local governments that receive financial assistance of $100,000 or more within the State's fiscal year shall have an audit made for that year. State and local governments that receive between $25,000 and $100,000 within the State's fiscal year shall have an audit made in accordance with Circular No. A-128, or in accordance with Federal laws and regulations governing the programs in which they participate.

Records: States must maintain records which substantiate eligibility determination and grants that are made.

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