☰ Revisor of Missouri


Chapter 208

< > Effective - 28 Aug 2013, 3 histories, see footnote (history) bottom

  208.053.  Low-wage trap elimination act — hand-up pilot program, transitioning of persons receiving child care subsidies — premiums — report — fund created, purpose — rulemaking — sunset provision. — 1.  The provisions of this section shall be known as the "Low-Wage Trap Elimination Act".  In order to more effectively transition persons receiving state-funded child care subsidy benefits under this chapter, the children's division, in conjunction with the department of revenue, shall, subject to appropriations, by January 1, 2013, implement a pilot program in at least one rural county and in at least one urban child care center that serves at least three hundred families, to be called the "Hand-Up Program", to allow willing recipients who wish to participate in the program to continue to receive such child care subsidy benefits while sharing in the cost of such benefits through the payment of a premium, as follows:

  (1)  For purposes of this section, "full child care benefits" shall be the full benefits awarded to a recipient based on the income eligibility amount established by the division through the annual appropriations process as of August 28, 2012, to qualify for the benefits and shall not include the transitional child care benefits that are awarded to recipients whose income surpasses the eligibility level for full benefits to continue.  The hand-up program shall be voluntary and shall be designed such that a participating recipient will not be faced with a sudden loss of child care benefits should the recipient's income rise above the maximum allowable monthly income for persons to receive full child care benefits as of August 28, 2012.  In such instance, the recipient shall be permitted to continue to receive such benefits if the recipient pays a premium, to be paid via a payroll deduction if possible, to be applied only to that portion of the recipient's income above such maximum allowable monthly income for the receipt of full child care benefits as follows:

  (a)  The premium shall be forty-four percent of the recipient's excess adjusted gross income over the maximum allowable monthly income for the applicable family size for the receipt of child care benefits;

  (b)  The premium shall be paid on a monthly basis by the participating recipient, or may be paid on a different periodic basis if through a payroll deduction consistent with the payroll period of the person's employer;

  (c)  The division shall develop a payroll deduction program in conjunction with the department of revenue, and shall promulgate rules for the payment of premiums, through such payroll deduction program or through an alternate method to be determined by the division, owed under the hand-up program; and

  (d)  Participating recipients who fail to pay the premium owed shall be removed permanently from the program after sixty days of nonpayment;

  (2)  Subject to the receipt of federal waivers if necessary, participating recipients shall be eligible to receive child care service benefits at income levels all the way up to the level at which a person's premium equals the value of the child care service benefits received by the recipient;

  (3)  Only those recipients who currently receive full child care benefits as of joining the program and who had been receiving full child care service benefits for a period of at least four months prior to implementation by the division of this program shall be eligible to participate in the program.  Only those recipients who agree to the terms of the hand-up program during a ninety-day sign-up period shall be allowed to participate in the program, pursuant to rules to be promulgated by the division; and

  (4)  A participating recipient shall be allowed to opt out of the program at any time, but such person shall not be allowed to participate in the program a second time.

  2.  The division shall track the number of participants in the hand-up program, premiums and taxes paid by each participant in the program and the aggregate of such premiums and taxes, as well as the aggregate of those taxes paid on income exceeding the maximum allowable income for receiving full child care benefits outside the hand-up program, and shall issue an annual report to the general assembly by January 1, 2014, and annually on January first thereafter, detailing the effectiveness of the pilot program in encouraging recipients to increase their income levels above the income maximum applicable to each recipient.  The report shall also detail the costs of administration and the increased amount of state income tax paid and premiums paid as a result of the program, as well as an analysis of whether the pilot program could be expanded to include other types of benefits including but not limited to food stamps, temporary assistance for needy families, low-income heating assistance, women, infants and children supplemental nutrition program, the state children's health insurance program, and MO HealthNet benefits.

  3.  The division shall pursue all necessary waivers from the federal government to implement the hand-up program with the goal of allowing participating recipients to receive child care service benefits at income levels all the way up to the level at which a person's premium equals the value of the child care service benefits received by the recipient.  If the division is unable to obtain such waivers, the division shall implement the program to the degree possible without such waivers.

  4.  (1)  There is hereby created in the state treasury the "Hand-Up Program Premium Fund" which shall consist of premiums collected under this section.  The state treasurer shall be custodian of the fund.  In accordance with sections 30.170 and 30.180, the state treasurer may approve disbursements.  The state treasurer shall invest moneys in the fund in the same manner as other funds are invested.  Any interest and moneys earned on such investments shall be credited to the fund.  Notwithstanding the provisions of section 33.080 to the contrary, any moneys remaining in the fund at the end of the biennium shall not revert to the credit of the general revenue fund.

  (2)  All premiums received under the program shall be deposited in the fund, out of which the cost of administering the hand-up program shall be paid, as well as the necessary payments to the federal government and to the state general revenue fund.  Child care benefits provided under the hand-up program shall continue to be paid for as under the existing state child care assistance program.

  5.  After the first year of the program, or sooner if feasible, the cost of administering the program shall be paid out of the premiums received.  Any premiums collected exceeding the cost of administering the program shall, if required by federal law, be shared with the federal government and the state general revenue fund in the same proportion that the federal government shares in the cost of funding the child care assistance program with the state.

  6.  Any rule or portion of a rule, as that term is defined in section 536.010, that is created under the authority delegated under this section shall become effective only if it complies with and is subject to all of the provisions of chapter 536 and, if applicable, section 536.028.  This section and chapter 536 are nonseverable and if any of the powers vested with the general assembly pursuant to chapter 536 to review, to delay the effective date, or to disapprove and annul a rule are subsequently held unconstitutional, then the grant of rulemaking authority and any rule proposed or adopted after August 28, 2012, shall be invalid and void.

  7.  Pursuant to section 23.253 of the Missouri sunset act:

  (1)  The provisions of the new program authorized under this section shall sunset automatically three years after August 28, 2014, unless reauthorized by an act of the general assembly; and

  (2)  If such program is reauthorized, the program authorized under this section shall sunset automatically six years after the effective date of the reauthorization of this section; and

  (3)  This section shall terminate on September first of the calendar year immediately following the calendar year in which the program authorized under this section is sunset.


(L. 2012 H.B. 1323, A.L. 2013 H.B. 986)

Sunset date 8-28-17

Termination date 9-01-18

---- end of effective   28 Aug 2013 ----

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208.053 8/28/2021
208.053 8/28/2013 8/28/2021
208.053 8/28/2012 8/28/2013

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