Montana Code Annotated 2023



Part 2. Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) -- General Provisions

Department To Adopt Rules

53-4-212. Department to adopt rules. (1) The department shall adopt rules and take action as necessary or desirable for the administration of public assistance programs.

(2) Subject to subsection (3), the department shall adopt rules that may include but are not limited to rules concerning:

(a) eligibility requirements, including gross and net income limitations, resource limitations, and income and resource exclusions;

(b) amounts of assistance, methods for computing benefit amounts, and the length of time for which benefits may be granted;

(c) the degree of kinship required for a person to qualify as a specified caretaker relative in order to be eligible for assistance;

(d) procedures and policies for employment and training programs, requirements for participation in employment and training programs, and exemptions, if any, from participation requirements;

(e) requirements for specified caretaker relatives, including cooperation with assessments, the number of hours of participation required for each month, specific activities required to address employment barriers, and other terms of performance;

(f) eligibility for and terms and conditions of child-care assistance for cash assistance recipients, including maximum amounts of assistance payable and amounts of copayments required by specified caretaker relatives;

(g) eligibility criteria and participation requirements for nonfinancial assistance recipients;

(h) terms of ineligibility or sanctions against a specified caretaker relative or other family member who fails to enter into an individual responsibility plan or to comply with the individual's obligations under the plan;

(i) requirements, if any, for participation in a temporary assistance to needy families employment and training program;

(j) reporting requirements;

(k) sanctions, disqualification, or other penalties for failure or refusal to comply with the rules or requirements of a public assistance program;

(l) exemptions from the 60-month limitation on assistance provided in 53-4-231 based on hardship or for families that include an individual who has been battered or subjected to extreme cruelty, as defined in section 103 of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996, 42 U.S.C. 608, including but not limited to the duration of the exemption;

(m) individuals who must be included as members of an assistance unit;

(n) categories of aliens who may receive assistance, if any;

(o) requirements relating to the assignment of child support rights and cooperation in establishing paternity and obtaining child support;

(p) requirements for eligibility and other terms and conditions of other programs to strengthen and preserve families;

(q) special eligibility or participation requirements applicable to teenage parents, if any;

(r) conditions under which assistance may be continued when an adult or a dependent child is temporarily absent from the home and the length of time for which assistance may be continued;

(s) any random drug testing or reporting requirements for persons who are required to comply with the conditions provided under 53-4-231(3) and graduated sanctions that may include terms of ineligibility for violations of conditions of supervision or treatment requirements. The department may enter into agreements with the department of corrections regarding testing and reporting on offenders under the supervision of the department of corrections.

(t) approved educational programs, appropriate educational courses of study, employee assessment instruments, and administration of the Montana parents as scholars program provided for in 53-4-209.

(3) The department shall adopt rules establishing a net income limit of 250% of the current federal poverty level for federal funds or state general fund money used for participating families in the child care for working caretaker relatives program. The department may incorporate an earned income work disregard of $200 and an additional 25% disregard from the household's gross income to determine the household's net income.

History: En. Sec. 2, Part 4, Ch. 82, L. 1937; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 156, L. 1951; amd. Sec. 50, Ch. 121, L. 1974; R.C.M. 1947, 71-503(part (e)); amd. Sec. 19, Ch. 491, L. 1995; amd. Sec. 20, Ch. 486, L. 1997; amd. Sec. 20, Ch. 465, L. 2001; amd. Sec. 3, Ch. 184, L. 2005; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 230, L. 2005; amd. Sec. 17, Ch. 486, L. 2009; amd. Sec. 32, Ch. 489, L. 2009; amd. Sec. 16, Ch. 41, L. 2019.