## 5101:4-4-27 Food assistance: determining monthly food assistance benefits.

(A) How is a monthly benefit allotment determined?

The monthly food assistance benefit can be determined several ways. The benefit amount can be determined through the statewide automated eligibility system, by using the basis of coupon/EBT issuance table, and by doing a manual budget. When calculating monthly benefits without using the statewide automated eligibility system the county agency must use the maximum food assistance allotment table and may need to use the basis of coupon/EBT issuance table and the maximum net monthly income standards. All of these tables are issued annually through a food assistance change transmittal, which can be found in the food assistance certification handbook at the Ohio department of job and family services website.

(1) To determine an assistance group's monthly food assistance allotment using the basis of coupon/EBT issuance table:

(a) Calculate the assistance group's net monthly income according to rule 5101:4-4-31 of the Administrative Code.

(b) When the assistance group is categorically eligible according to rule 5101:4-2-02 of the Administrative Code and thus not subject to the net income standard, find the monthly allotment on the basis of coupon/ EBT issuance table using the net income of the assistance group and the appropriate assistance group size.

(c) When the assistance group is subject to the net income standard, compare the assistance group's net monthly income to the maximum net monthly income standard. When the assistance group's net income is greater than the net monthly income standard, the assistance group is ineligible. When the assistance group's net income is equal to or less than the net monthly income standard, the assistance group is eligible. Find the allotment amount on the basis of coupon/EBT issuance table using the net income of the assistance group and the appropriate assistance group size.

(d) Eligible assistance groups of one or two persons are eligible for a full monthly benefit of no less than the minimum benefit allotment.

(e) Assistance groups containing three or more members shall receive the actual calculated allotment.

(2) To calculate the allotment manually (without using the basis of coupon/EBT issuance table):

(a) Calculate the assistance group's net monthly income according to rule 5101:4-4-31 of the Administrative Code.

(b) When the assistance group is categorically eligible according to rule 5101:4-2-02 of the Administrative Code and thus not subject to the net monthly income standard, multiply the net monthly income by thirty per cent.

(c) When the assistance group is subject to the net income standard, compare the assistance group's net monthly income to the maximum net monthly income standard. When the assistance group's net income is greater than the net monthly income standard, the assistance group is ineligible. When the assistance group's net income is equal to or less than the net monthly income standard, the assistance group is eligible. Multiply the net monthly income by thirty per cent.

(d) Round the product up to the next whole dollar when it ends in one cent through ninety-nine cents.

(e) To obtain the allotment, subtract the result of the net monthly income calculation from the maximum food assistance allotment for the appropriate assistance group size.

(f) When the benefit is for a one or two person assistance group and the computation results in a benefit of less than the minimum benefit allotment, round up to the minimum benefit amount.

(g) Assistance groups containing three or more members shall receive the actual calculated allotment.

(B) How are benefits prorated for the initial month?

The term "initial month" means the first month for which the assistance group is certified for participation in the food assistance program. The initial month must follow a period when the assistance group was not participating in the food assistance program. For most assistance groups the break in receiving food assistance can be any amount of time. However, for migrant and seasonal farm workers, an initial month is determined by a break in benefits of at least one month. Assistance groups containing migrant and seasonal farm workers shall receive a full month's allotment with no proration when the break in benefits is less than one month.

Benefits for the initial month of application are prorated based on the date the application is received by the county agency. To prorate the initial month of benefits the county agency must determine what the food assistance allotment would have been for the entire month as explained in paragraph (A) of this rule, and then prorate the benefits as described in this paragraph based on the date the application was received:

The steps for prorating are:

(1) Add one to the number of days in the month;

(2) Subtract the date the application was received from the total calculated in paragraph (B)(1) of this rule.

(3) Multiply the amount from paragraph (B)(2) of this rule by the full month's benefits determined from paragraph (A) of this rule.

(4) Divide the amount from paragraph (B)(3) of this rule by the number of days in the month.

(5) When the number calculated in paragraph (B)(4) of this rule ends in one cent through ninety-nine cents, round it down to the next lower dollar.

(6) When the number calculated results in an allotment of less than ten dollars, round it to zero dollars. When the amount calculated is ten dollars or more the benefit should be issued.

(C) What happens when there are anticipated changes at the time of application?

(1) An assistance group's allotment for the month of application may be different than the following months.

(2) An assistance group may be eligible for the month of application, but ineligible in the next month. The assistance group is entitled to benefits for the month of application even when the processing of its application results in the benefits being issued in the next month.

(3) Similarly, an assistance group may be ineligible for the month of application, but eligible in the next month due to anticipated changes in circumstances. Even though denied for the month of application, the assistance group does not have to reapply in the next month. The same application shall be used for the denial for the month of application and the approval for the next months, within the timeliness standards as set forth in rule 5101:4-2-11 of the Administrative Code.

(D) What happens when there are anticipated changes at the time of reapplication?

Eligibility for reapplication shall be determined based on circumstances anticipated for the certification period starting the month following the expiration of the current certification period.

(1) When an assistance group, other than a migrant or seasonal farm worker assistance group, submits an application after the assistance group's certification period has expired, that application shall be considered an initial application and benefits for that month shall be prorated.

(2) When an assistance group's failure to timely reapply for benefits was due to an error of the county agency and therefore, there was a break in participation, the county agency shall follow procedures in rule 5101:4-5-07 of the Administrative Code.

(3) When an assistance group reapplies prior to the end of its certification period, but is found ineligible for the first month following the end of the certification period, the first month of any subsequent participation shall be considered an initial month.

(4) When an assistance group submits a reapplication for benefits prior to the end of its certification period and is found eligible for the first month following the end of the certification period, then that month shall not be an initial month.

(5) The requirements of paragraph (D)(4) of this rule are effective only when the assistance group has been properly notified of the expiration of its certification period, as described in rule 5101:4-7-07 of the Administrative Code.

Effective: 6/1/2015
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 02/27/2015 and 06/01/2020
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 5101.54
Rule Amplifies: 329.04, 329.042, 5101.54
Prior Effective Dates: 6/2/80, 10/1/81, 5/1/82, 10/1/82, 6/1/83, 11/1/83 (Temp.), 12/22/83, 8/20/86 (Emer.), 11/15/86, 1/16/87 (Emer.), 4/6/87, 5/1/89 (Emer.), 7/17/89, 1/5/90 (Emer.), 3/22/90, 7/1/92, 8/1/92 (Emer.), 10/30/92, 2/1/93, 9/1/94, 8/1/95 (Emer.), 10/13/95, 9/22/96 (Emer.), 12/21/96, 4/1/97 (Emer.), 6/6/97, 2/2/98, 9/28/98, 5/1/99, 6/1/01 (Emer.), 8/27/01, 12/1/04, 3/1/10