This rule finalizes the proposed rule of the same name which was published Dec. 17, 1999. It implements 13 provisions of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA).
Upon implementation, this rule will:
- Prohibit an increase in food stamp benefits when a household's income is reduced because of either a penalty imposed under a Federal, State, or local means-tested public assistance program for failure to perform a required action or for an act of fraud;
- allow State agencies to disqualify an individual from participation in the Food Stamp Program (Program) if the individual is disqualified from another means-tested program for failure to perform an action required by that program;
- specify that State agencies may not apply a food stamp sanction to Program households for failure to ensure their minor children attend school, or if the adults do not have (or are not working toward attaining) a secondary school diploma or its equivalent; make individuals convicted of drug-related felonies ineligible for food stamps;
- make fleeing felons and probation and parole violators ineligible for food stamps; require States to provide households' addresses, Social Security Numbers, or photographs to law enforcement officers to assist them in locating fugitive felons or probation or parole violators; allow States to require food stamp recipients to cooperate with child support agencies as a condition of food stamp eligibility;
- allow states to disqualify individuals who are in arrears in court-ordered child support payments; double the penalties for violating Program requirements; permanently disqualify individuals convicted of trafficking in food stamp benefits of $500 or more; make individuals ineligible for 10 years if they misrepresent their identity or residence in order to receive multiple Program benefits;
- and limit the Program participation of most able-bodied adults without dependents to three months in a three-year period during times the individual is not working or participating in a work program.