FIP ASSISTANCE:  SCHOOL ATTENDANCE                                                H.B. 4041 (S-2):

                                                                                                    SUMMARY OF BILL

                                                                                      REPORTED FROM COMMITTEE










House Bill 4041 (Substitute S-2 as reported)

Sponsor:  Representative Al Pscholka

House Committee:  Families, Children, and Seniors

Senate Committee:  Families, Seniors and Human Services




The bill would amend the Social Welfare Act to do the following:


 --    Prohibit a program group from receiving Family Independence Program (FIP) assistance if a member of the program group did not meet school attendance requirements, with respect to a child under the age of 16, beginning after the date the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) implemented the policy required by the bill.

 --    Require a child who was 16 or older to be removed from a program group, if a member of the program group did not meet the attendance requirements with respect to that child, beginning after the DHHS implemented the required policy.

 --    Require the DHHS, within one year after the bill's effective date, to implement a policy that it would have to follow before terminating a program group from receiving FIP assistance, or removing a child from the program group, because of failure to meet school attendance requirements.

 --    Require a person to be a member of a program group that met the proposed school attendance requirement, in addition to meeting current eligibility criteria for FIP assistance.


(The Act defines "program group" as a family and all those individuals living with a family whose income and assets are considered for purposes of determining financial eligibility for Family Independence Program assistance.)


 MCL 400.57b                                                          Legislative Analyst:  Patrick Affholter




The bill would codify current policy and would have a minimal fiscal impact on the State. The bill would have no fiscal impact on local units of government.


The Department has implemented a similar school attendance and student status policy, which is described in Bridges Eligibility Manual 245. The policy manual requires dependent children age six through 17 who are part of a Family Independence Program group to attend school full-time. A dependent child who is age 18 must attend high school full-time until the child either graduates or turns 19, whichever occurs first.


If a child age six through 15 is not attending school full-time, the entire FIP group is not eligible to receive FIP assistance. A dependent child age 16 or 17 who is not attending high school full-time is disqualified from FIP, but the other FIP group members may still receive benefits. Under current policy, FIP eligibility may be reinstated if full-time school attendance is achieved for 21 consecutive calendar days.


In FY 2013-14, 189 cases were sanctioned due to noncompliance with the policy, and during the first quarter of FY 2014-15, 68 cases were sanctioned. The bill's requirement that the Department implement a policy prior to the termination of a family group's benefits would determine how many of these sanctioned cases no longer would receive benefits.


Date Completed:  5-14-15                                                 Fiscal Analyst:  Frances Carley





This analysis was prepared by nonpartisan Senate staff for use by the Senate in its deliberations and does not constitute an official statement of legislative intent.