Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance

TANF Eligibility Determinations (Follow-Up Report)

The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program is a federally funded public assistance program providing cash assistance, job training and other services to adults with dependent children. To be eligible to receive TANF benefits, individuals must meet certain requirements. In New York State, TANF eligibility determinations are made by 58 local social services districts (57 counties and New York City) and are overseen by the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA).

In audit report 2003-S-8, we examined the eligibility determination process in New York State and found that certain improvements were needed. For example, the local districts are required to assess the reliability of eligibility information provided by TANF applicants to determine whether there are indications that the information may not be accurate. If there are such indications, the case is to be referred to investigative staff at the district for more intensive review. However, we found that local districts did not always refer such cases for investigation. We recommended OTDA strengthen its oversight of certain aspects of the eligibility determination process and take certain other actions to bring New York State into full compliance with federal eligibility requirements. When we followed up on these matters with OTDA officials, we found that they had made good progress in implementing our audit recommendations.

For a complete copy of Report 2005-F-17 click here.