STATE OF WISCONSIN
Department of Heath and Family Services
Division of Children and Family' Services

  Memo Series DCFS 97-01/ACTION
           February 25, 1997

      Re:  ADVISORY NOTIFICATION
              OF CALENDAR YEAR 1997
              KINSHIP CARE
              ALLOCATIONS

 

TO:

County Board Chairpersons
County Departments of Human Service
County; Departments of Social Service
County Executives

FROM:

Susan N. Dreyfus
Administrator

 

This memo contains information on CY 97 Kinship Care allocation. We apologize for the delay in sending the information to you. Funding complexities and transition issues contributed to this delay.  In 1997 there are four allocations. We are aware that the four part allocation is unusually complex but it is unfortunately necessary for CY 1997.  In 1998 Kinship Care funding will be substantially simplified because all funding will come from Department of Health and Family Services (DHFS) budget resources.

Under the current AFDC/NLRR program, adult caretaker relatives may receive cash benefits while caring for minor relatives. Wisconsin Works (W-2) provides for a new program, entitled Kinship Care, to replace the NLRR program.  Beginning 
July 1, 1997, the DHFS has the statutory responsibility for funding this program. Prior, to 
July 1, 1997, the Department of Workforce Development (DWD) has program responsibility.

Effective January 1, 1997, county and tribal economic support agencies, with the agreement of the county or tribal child welfare agency, may refer new applicants to the child welfare agency and may begin transitioning current AFDC/NLRR recipients to the Kinship Care program by referring them to the child welfare agency for applications. Effective April 1, 1997, new applicants must be referred to the child welfare agency and county and tribal economic support agencies must begin transitioning current AFDC/NLRR recipients to Kinship Care' by referring them to the child welfare agency for application for the Kinship Care program.

The allocations attached to this memo are based on the average NLRR cases or NLRR children in a county for 1994 to 1996 as a proportion of the state-wide average for those years. How the data was applied to each of the four allocations is stated with the allocation descriptions which follow.

There are four allotments for the Kinship Care Program in CY 1997. These four allocations are necessary because of the transfer of this program from DWD to DHFS, funding requirements based on current state fiscal year (SFY 97) budget, and requirements in the proposed 1997-1999 state budget. These allocations are described below.

(NOTE : During 1997, the benefits for all NLRR cases will be paid through the CARES system until they are transitioned to the Kinship Care program. All cases must be transitioned by December 31,1997.)

  1. Assessment Allocation. These dollars may only be used for the period January 1, 1997 through September 30, 1997 for Kinship Care assessments only. Any unspent funds will lapse to the State of Wisconsin. This allocation is based on a county's average proportion of the state-wide NLRR caseload.

  2. Start up benefit dollars. These dollars are available for the period January 1, 1997 through June 30, 1997 and may only be used to pay Kinship Care benefits for new cases and cases converted from NLRR to Kinship Care. This allocation is based on a county's average proportion of the state wide number of children for which a NLRR payment was made.

  3. Base Kinship Care Assessment and Benefit Allocation. These dollars are available beginning July 1, 1997 and will be contracted for through December 31, 1997. These dollars are to be used for Kinship Care benefits and assessments. These funds are to be used by a county for assessments when the assessment fund dollars (Described in # 1 above) are depleted for that county or the contract period for the Assessment allocation expires. This allocation is based on a county's average proportion of the state wide number of children for which a NLRR payment was made.

  4. Foster Care Placement Allocation. These dollars are available beginning July 1, 1997 and will be contracted for through December 31, 1997. These funds are to be used for children who are placed into foster care after an application has been made on their behalf for the Kinship Care program. These funds pay for assessments and benefits for IV-E eligible cases only (this is based on proposed statutory language). If a child is not IV-E eligible, Community Aids funds should be used for foster care costs. This allocation was based on averaged NLRR caseload and children data.

The Division of Children and Family Services would like to thank you in advance for your continued assistance in administering this program.

ACTION SUMMARY STATEMENT:

Contracts for all of the above allocation will be issued shortly. The allocations for items 3 and 4 above will be contracted for a full calendar year beginning in CY 1998. We anticipate that these funds will be part of the base 1998 State/County Contract.

CENTRAL OFFICE CONTACTS:

Paul Minkus
Division of Children and Family Services
Bureau of Management and Operations
1 West Wilson Street, P. O. Box 8916
Madison, WI 53708-8916
(608) 266-8420

 

Mark Mitchell
Division of Children and Family Services
Bureau of Programs and Policies
1 West Wilson Street, P. O. Box 8916
Madison, WI 53708-8916 (608) 266-2860

 

Attachment

cc

J. Jean Rogers, DWD


The Department of Children and Families, protecting children, strengthening families, building communities.