STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1072
RE: H.B. No. 739
Honorable Colleen Hanabusa
President of the Senate
Twenty-Fifth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2009
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Human Services, to which was referred H.B. No. 739, H.D. 2, entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO TEMPORARY ASSISTANCE TO NEEDY FAMILIES,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose of this measure is to direct the Department of Human Services to expend federal Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) funds with an emphasis on providing child care services, work programs and related support services, prevention of teenage pregnancy, child protective services, maintenance of information systems, and administrative costs and to transfer portions of TANF funds to the social services block grant and child care development fund.
Testimony in support of this measure was provided by the Department of Human Services, the Office of Youth Services, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, the National Association of Social Workers, the University of Hawaii-Manoa, Hawaii Women Work, Hawaii Family Support Institute, Good Beginnings Alliance, Child and Family Services, Hawaii Democratic Party, Maui Family Support Services, and twelve private individuals. Written testimony presented to the Committee may be reviewed on the Legislature's website.
Your Committee finds that in the current economic climate, the social safety net provided by TANF-funded programs is especially important. It is essential that the State assist vulnerable individuals and families to meet basic human needs such as shelter, food, and health care. It is equally as important that the State assist as many Hawaii residents as possible to enter or reenter the workforce and to maintain productive employment. Because of the current economic recession, many working-class and middle-class individuals are losing jobs, thereby becoming at-risk for housing loss and economic dislocation. Your Committee finds that TANF-funded programs and services will help prevent many of these individuals from falling into poverty.
Your Committee intends this measure to direct valuable TANF funding to meet the demand for direct cash benefits and necessary social service programs while maintaining an adequate level of cash reserves to ensure the continued provision of cash benefits into the future.
Your Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Providing specific amounts to be appropriated from TANF program funds for various programs;
(2) Clarifying the scope of the programs enumerated in the measure that should receive TANF funding by:
(A) More narrowly defining the programs under the existing measure to include services relating to care for children in their own homes or in the homes of relatives, work program contracts and support services for program recipients, prevention and reduction of out-of-wedlock pregnancies and encouragement of two-parent families, and purchase of service contracts for child protective services;
(B) Adding appropriations for costs of program implementation, including costs for information systems and program administration; and
(C) Transferring funds to the child care development fund and the social services block grant to provide for greater flexibility in spending federal funds; and
(3) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for purposes of clarity and style.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Human Services that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 739, H.D. 2, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 739, H.D. 2, S.D. 1, and be referred to the Committee on Ways and Means.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Human Services,
SUZANNE CHUN OAKLAND, Chair