The California Department of Social Services has issued a notice describing the process for counties to request an income exemption for people who receive to CalWorks and CalFresh and are also participating in guaranteed income (GI) projects that operate multiple counties. GI projects that operate in multiple counties can request that their participants have the GI payments exempted on a project-by- project basis. The purpose of the policy is to provide a way for counties GI projects to be exempted from CalWorks and CalFresh benefits.
The organization operating the GI project needs to pick one county to take the lead and submit the following documents: A letter explaining why the organization needs an exemption, a letter of support for the main county, and a letter of support from the other counties in the project. All requests will be reviewed on a rolling basis.
GI income exemption is granted only if applicants comply with the mandated criteria in the Welfare and Institutions code. If the GI program is operated by a non-government entity, it must coordinate with their local Health and Human Service Agency. CDSS will only accept exemption requestions from county Health and Human Services agency.
For income from GI projects to be exempt for CalFresh purposes, there must be some amount of private funds included in each direct payment to project participants. (ACIN I-82-22, December 23, 2022.)