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The Florida Senate

2017 Florida Statutes

F.S. 445.017
445.017 Diversion.
(1) Many customers of the one-stop delivery system do not need ongoing temporary cash assistance, but, due to an unexpected circumstance or emergency situation, require some immediate assistance to secure or retain employment or child support. These immediate obligations may include a shelter or utility payment, a car repair to continue employment, or other services that will alleviate the applicant’s emergency financial need and allow the person to focus on obtaining or continuing employment.
(2) Up-front diversion shall involve four steps:
(a) Linking applicants with job opportunities as the first option.
(b) Offering services, such as child care or transportation, as an alternative to welfare.
(c) Screening applicants to respond to emergency needs.
(d) Offering a one-time payment of up to $1,000 per family.
(3) Before finding an applicant family eligible for up-front diversion services, the local workforce development board must determine that all requirements of eligibility for diversion services would likely be met.
(4) The local workforce development board shall screen each family on a case-by-case basis for barriers to obtaining or retaining employment. The screening shall identify barriers that, if corrected, may prevent the family from receiving temporary cash assistance on a regular basis. Assistance to overcome a barrier to employment is not limited to cash, but may include vouchers or other in-kind benefits.
(5) The family receiving up-front diversion must sign an agreement restricting the family from applying for temporary cash assistance for 3 months, unless an emergency is demonstrated to the local workforce development board. If a demonstrated emergency forces the family to reapply for temporary cash assistance within 3 months after receiving a diversion payment, the diversion payment shall be prorated over an 8-month period and deducted from any temporary assistance for which the family is eligible.
(6) The department may adopt rules governing the administration of this section and may establish guidelines for screening criteria, referrals to community resources, restrictions on receipt of up-front diversion and transitional services, definitions of emergency services, verification requirements, and processing timeframes.
History.s. 19, ch. 96-175; s. 14, ch. 97-173; s. 17, ch. 2000-165; s. 6, ch. 2000-300; s. 35, ch. 2016-216.
Note.Former s. 414.15.