The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) has issued guidance regarding changes to CalWORKs income disregards and income reporting threshold (IRT) in SB 80. Effective June 1, 2020 or when CDSS notifies the legislature that the computer systems have been programmed, whichever is later, the disregard for earned income or disability based income will increase from $225 to $500 and 50 percent of the remaining earned income. Effective June 1, 2021 or one year from the date the first increase is automated, the earned income disregard will increase to $550. Effective June 1, 2022 or two years from the date the first increase is automated, the earned income disregard will increase to $600.
Effectvie June 1, 2020 or when CDSS informs the legislature that programming is complete, whichever is later, grants will be reevaluated by the county using the new income disregard amount.
There are currently three different CalWORKs income reporting threshold amounts. Effective June 1, 2020, or when automation is complete, whichever is later, there will only be two income reporting threshold amounts – 55 percent of the federal poverty level for a family of three plus the amount of income last used to calculate the grant, and 130 percent of the federal poverty level, or the level at which a family becomes ineligible for CalFresh. This change will allow families to earn more income without losing eligibility.
When the family receives income over the IRT and reports it to the county, the county must determine whether the reported income is reasonably anticipated to continue. If income over the IRT is reasonable anticipated to continue but not at a level that will result in ineligibility, the county must recalculate the grant.
CDSS issued modified notices to reflect the new income disregard and IRT amounts. (ACL 19-76, August 2, 2019.)