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Welfare Benefit Report

Welfare Benefit Report

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Published by Vicki McKenna
LFB audit of WI welfare benefits
LFB audit of WI welfare benefits

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Published by: Vicki McKenna on Aug 06, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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08/06/2012

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LegislativeFiscalBureau
OneEastMain,Suite301Madison,WI53703'(608)266-3847Fax:(608)267-6873Email:fiscal.bureau@legis.wisconsin.goWebsite:http://!egis.wisconsin.govllfb
July26,2012TO:SenatorAlbertaDarlingRoom19South,StateCapitolFROM:BobLang,DirectorSUBJECT:ValueofPublicAssistanceBenefitsandTaxCreditsAvailabletoHypotheticalFamily
In
responsetoyourrequest,thismemorandumprovidesestimatesofthevalueofprogrambenefitsand
tax
benefitsthatareavailabletoatwo-personfamilythatincludesoneadultandonechildwithwageincomeequaltothefederalpovertylevel(FPL).
In
2012,thefederalpovertylevelis$15,130foratwo-person
family,
In
ordertoidentifyprogramsand
tax
benefitsforwhichthefamilywouldbeeligibleandtoestimatethevaluetothesefamilies,severalassumptionsaremade.First,itisassumedthatthefamily'sincomeisearnedincalendaryear2012.Consequently,taxcreditsavailabletothefamilywouldbeclaimed
in
2013.Second,
it
isassumedthatthechildisfouryearsoldandisenrolledinchildcareintheCityofMilwaukee.Third,itisassumedthatthefamilydoesnotreceivechildsupport.Finally,
it
isassumedthefamilylivesinaone-bedroomapartment,andpaysout-of-pocketcostsforrent,includingutilities(heat,electricity,andwater)of$339permonth.
1.BadgerCarePlus
Aspartofthestate'smedicalassistance(MA)program,BadgerCarePlusreimburseshealthcareprovidersfortheservicestheyprovidetolow-incomefamilieswithdependentchildren.Theprogramhasavarietyofeligibilityandcost-sharingrequirementsthatdepend,inpart,ontheindividual'sfamilyincomeandwhethertheindividualisachildoranadult.'
In
thisexample;boththemotherandthechildwouldbeeligibleforcoverageunderBadgerCarePlus.Moreover,duetotheirincomelevel,theywouldnotbesubjecttomonthlypremiumsundertheprogram'scurrentrules,norwouldtheybedisqualifiedfromBadgerCarePlusiftheyalsohadaccesstocoverageunderemployer-sponsoredinsurance.
 
Forthepurposeofthisexercise,thevalueofBadgerCarePluscoverageforthefamilyisassumedtoequalthe(allfunds)costtothestatetoprovideBadgerCarePluscoveragetothefamily.Thetotalestimatedannualizedbenefitcostforthefamilyinthis.example($4,740)reflectstheaveragecostofprovidingcoverageforchildren($1,500)andadults($3,240)intheprogramwhodonothaveaccesstootherformsofmajormedicalinsurance.
EstimatedAnnualizedValue
of
Benefit$4,740
2.FoodShareWisconsin
FoodShareprovidesfederally-fundedbenefitstoindividualsandfamiliestopurchasefoodfromparticipatinggrocerystoresandotherretailers.ThisisWisconsin'sversionofthefederalsupplementalnutritionassistanceprogram(SNAP),formerlycalledthefoodstampprogram.
In
Wisconsin,householdswithincomesupto200%ofthefederalpovertylevelqualifyforbenefits.Todeterminethebenefitamount,30%ofahousehold'snetincome(aftercertaindeductions)issubtractedfromthemaximumbenefitamountfora,householdofthatsize.Currently,themaximumbenefitforafamilyoftwois$4,404peryear.
EstimatedAnnualizedValueofBenefit
$3,285
3.
(WIC)
SpecialSupplementalNutritionProgramforWomen,InfantsandChildren
WICprovidescertainpregnantorpost-partumwomen,infants,andchildrenunderagefive,withvoucherstopurchasedesignatedfoods.FamiliesparticipatinginWICalsoreceivenutritioneducationandcounseling.Incomelimitsfortheprogramare185%ofthefederal,povertylevel($27,991forafamilyoftwoin2012).UnlikeFoodShare,wherefamiliesmaypurchaseawiderangeoffoods,WIClimitspurchasestofoodsincludedinthe\VIC"foodpackage."Forthefamilyspecified
in
thisrequest,the4-year-oldchildwouldqualifyfor
\VIC,
andthefamilywouldreceivemonthlyvouchersforsetamountsofthefollowingfoods:milk,juice,cereal,eggs,fruitsandvegetables,wholewheatbread,andachoiceoflegumesorpeanutbutter.ThedollarvalueofthefoodpackagewasestimatedusingaveragefoodpricedatafromtheBureauofLaborStatistics,andtheU.S.DepartmentofAgriculture.
EstimatedAnnualizedValueofBenefit
$477
4.WisconsinShares
WisconsinSharesisthestate'schildcaresubsidyprogram.Undertheprogram,thestatesubsidizesthecostofchildcareforqualifiedfamiliesbymakingpaymentstothechildcareproviderchosenbytheparent.Theamountofthesubsidypaymentvariesbasedonthetypeofchildcareprovided(licensedgroup,licensedfamily,regularlycertified,orprovisionallycertified),theratingofthechildcareprovider(two-starthroughfive-star),thenumberof
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childrenincare,andthecountyortribeinwhichthecareisprovided.Theparentisalsorequiredtocontributetothecostofchildcare.Thecopaymentamountisbasedonincome,familysize,andthenumberofchildrenincare.Thefamilywouldbeeligibleforachildcaresubsidyinorderfortheparenttoworkfull-timeinanunsubsidizedjob.Thefollowingassumptionsaremadetocalculatetheestimatedsubsidypaymentamount:(a)childcareisprovidedbyalicensedgroupchildcarecenter;(b)thechildcareproviderhasathree-starrating;and(c)thechildisreceivingfull-timecare.Basedontheseassumptions,theannualchildcaresubsidywouldtotal$10,972($211perweek)andthefamily'sannualrequiredcopaymentwouldtotal$1,092($21perweek).
EstimatedAnnualizedValueofBenefits$10,972
5.FederalSection8HousingAssistance
TheWisconsinHousingandEconomicDevelopmentAuthority(WHEDA)provideshousingassistancetolow-incomepersonsthrough
the
federalSection8.programs.Section8assistancemaybeintheformof:(a)project-basedassistance,inwhichpaymentismadetopropertymanagersonthebasisofeligibleresidentsoccupyingtheproperty;or(b)housingchoicevouchers,whicharecipientcanus~atanypropertiesthatwillacceptthatformofrentpayment.Section8project-basedandvoucherassistancegenerallyislimitedtohouseholdswithgrossincomeatorbelow50%ofareamedianincome
(A1v:1I).
Afour-personhouseholdisabasefordeterminingincomeasapercentageofAMI,withone-tothree-personhouseholdssubjecttoalowerincomelimitandhouseholdsoffivepersonsormoresubjecttohigherlimits.ThemedianhouseholdincomefortheMilwaukeemetropolitanarea,asdeterminedbytheU.S.DepartmentofHousingandUrbanDevelopment(HUD)forfederalfiscalyear2012,is$73,200.RentpaymentsforSection8recipientsarethegreaterof:(a)30%ofadjustedmonthlyincome,asdescribedbelow;(b)10%ofgrossmonthlyincome;(c)anydesignatedhousingallowanceunderanywelfareprograms;or(d)aminimumrentofupto$25or$50,dependingonthetypeofSection8assistanceinvolved.WHEDAreportsthemostcommonpaymentis30%ofadjustedmonthlyincome.Severaladjustmentstomonthlyincomearerequiredbyfederallaw,mostnotablyinthisinstance:(a)a$480annualdeductioneachforachildunder18,afull-timestudent,oradisabledperson;and(b)childcareexpensesthatallowadultsinthehouseholdtoattendwork.,Atwo-personhouseholdwithincomeof$15~130wouldbeat20.6%ofareamedianincome.Thefamily'Sannualadjustedincomewouldbe$13,558,afterapplyingdeductionsof$480forthechildand$1,092inestimatedannualchildcareco-paymentsunderWisconsinShares.Thefamily'sexpectedrentpayment,equalto30%ofadjustedmonthlyincome,wouldbe$339.TheSection8assistancetothefamilywouldbethedifferencebetween'thetenant'sincome-basedmonthlypaymentandthepredeterminedrentfortheunit.Rentamountsareestablishedonthebasisofthearea'sfairmarketrentandmayvarysomewhatbasedonlocalconditions,andareinclusiveof
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I thought it was supposed to be a safty net, not a safty hammock.

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