Rules Relating to Child Care Services Under
Chapter 17-798.2, Hawaii Administrative Rules
§1 Purpose and authority
§2 Eligibility requirements
§3 Method of computing child care payment
§4 Mandatory Reporting
§1 Purpose and authority. These rules are adopted pursuant to sections 127A-12, 13, 25, 29, and 31, Hawaii Revised Statutes, to respond to the COVID-19 emergency declared by the Governor. The following amendments are necessary to enable the Department of Human Services to assist families who need child care services due to impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic emergency. These rules have the force and effect of law.
§2 Eligibility requirements. Section 17-798.2-9, Hawaii Administrative Rules, is amended to read as follows:
“§17-798.2-9 Eligibility requirements. (a) Depending upon availability of funds, all children eligible for child care assistance shall reside with the eligible caretaker and meet the following requirements:
(1) Be under age thirteen years;
(2) Be thirteen through seventeen years of age with a physical or mental incapacity that prevents the child from doing self-care; or
(3) Receive child protective services, and the need for child care is specified in the family unit’s case plan as ordered by the court.
(b) A caretaker shall be eligible for child care, provided the caretaker:
(1) Has a monthly gross income verified through documentation that does not exceed eighty-five percent of the State Median Income for a family of the same size except for:
(A) Individuals who are licensed by the department or organizations under the authority of the department, as foster parents; [or]
(B) Family units receiving child protective services; [
(C) Family units impacted by any federal-, state-, or county-declared emergency proclamation related to a man-made or natural disaster, or public health pandemic situation;
(2) Meets one of the following conditions:
(A) Is engaged in employment in exchange for wages or salary;
(B) Has a written offer of employment that is scheduled to start within two weeks;
(C) Needs child care for up to thirty calendar days during a break in employment, if employment is scheduled to resume within thirty days;
(D) Needs up to thirty consecutive days in a twelve-month period for the caretaker with or without a work history to job search, when there is no one to care for the child, not to exceed the maximum child care rates as provided under section 17-798.2-12;
(E) Is enrolled in and attends an educational program or job training, vocational, or employment training. This includes the break time between classes for the day;
(F) Is participating in the FTW program or a treatment program as required by section 17-656.1-10, except for a participant in the Food Stamp Employment and Training program, and the FTW participant is involved in the required activities written in the FTW employment or individualized service plan;
(G) Is receiving child protective services and the need for child care is specified in the family unit’s case plan as ordered by the court;
(H) Is in a two-parent family unit where one of the caretakers is in an approved activity and the other caretaker is determined to have a disability which prevents the caretaker from providing care for their own child. Proof of disability and inability to provide care of the caretaker’s own eligible child shall be verified by the written report of a State-licensed physician, psychologist, or psychiatrist. In the case of a temporary disability, the written report shall be submitted every six months;
(I) Is a caretaker participating in an approved activity and has a temporary disability that prevents him or her from engaging in that activity and providing care for his or her own child until the activity can be resumed. Proof of the temporary disability condition and duration, and inability to care for the caretaker’s own child shall be verified by the written report of a State-licensed physician, psychologist, or psychiatrist. The written report shall be reviewed every thirty days;
(J) Is a caretaker whose child is approved for participation in the Preschool Open Doors program; [
(K) Is a caretaker under the age eighteen years who meets any eligibility condition cited in section 17-798.2-9(b)(2)(A) through (J), retains custody of his or her own child, and does not reside in the same household with his or her adult caretaker [ ] ; or
(L) Is a caretaker impacted by any federal-, state-, or county-declared emergency proclamation related to a man-made or natural disaster, or public health pandemic situation and who needs child care to search for employment or prepare for resuming employment; and
(3) Shall establish a reasonable relationship between the time during which the caretaker participates in an activity and the time during which child care is needed.
(c) Child care providers and caregivers:
(1) Shall meet the following conditions in order that child care payments may be authorized:
(A) Be eighteen years old or older;
(B) Afford caretakers unlimited access to their children, including written records concerning their children, during normal hours of provider operation and whenever the children are in the care of the provider;
(C) Be a department regulated or license-exempt child care provider, including in-home care providers. License-exempt providers shall be listed with the department and shall submit a written statement to the department that shall attest to their:
(i) Willingness to provide care;
(ii) Rate that will be charged;
(iii) Assurance that the provider premises are safe from hazards in accord with subparagraphs (G) and (H); and
(iv) Address and telephone number;
(D) Have no known history of child abuse or neglect, physical, psychological or psychiatric problems, or criminal convictions that may adversely affect or interfere with the care of children;
(E) Provide consent, on forms supplied by the department, to conduct a background check. The background check shall be conducted in accord with sections 17-891.1-3, 17-892.1-3, 17-895-3, or 17-896-3;
Provide consent, on forms supplied by the department, to conduct an additional fingerprint check through the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI), except for the child’s grandparents, great-grandparents, siblings living in a separate residence and who are at least eighteen years old, and aunts or uncles;
(F) Be free of tuberculosis as indicated by a skin test or chest x-ray completed within the last twenty-four months of child care; and
(G) Have a child care facility or home with an installed smoke detector, unobstructed emergency exits, and an emergency exit plan.
(2) Shall not be one of the following:
(A) Parents, biological or legal;
(B) Step-parents living in the household;
(C) Guardians, or members of the family unit that receives government financial assistance payments, including essential persons;
(D) Providers who are not in compliance with State or county regulatory requirements;
(E) Individuals under the age of eighteen years;
(F) Other individuals determined by the department to pose a risk to the health and safety of the child;
(G) A sibling of the child needing care who resides in the same home as the child; or
(H) A caretaker.
(d) The department shall:
(1) Verify that the child and caretaker meet the eligibility requirements as described in this chapter;
(2) Establish the eligibility of the child care provider and caregiver selected by the caretaker, following the provisions of section 17-798.2-9(c).
(3) Allow, at the department’s option, for the presumptive eligibility of a license-exempt provider selected by the caretaker upon receipt by the department of the completed and signed child care certificate and provider confirmation forms and consent forms for conducting a background check, provided that the presumptive eligibility shall end upon completion of the background check;
(4) Authorize the initial and subsequent monthly child care payments based on sections 17-798.2-9, 17-798.2-10, 17-798.2-12, 17-798.2-13, 17-798.2-14, 17-798.2-15, 17-798.2-16, 17-798.2-17, 17-798.2-18, 17-798.2-20, 17-798.2-21, 17-798.2-29, and 17-798.2-35;
(5) Review eligibility no less than every six months and whenever changes that affect eligibility are reported; and
(6) Track and monitor appropriateness and utilization of child care and payments.”
§3 Method of computing child care payment. Section 17-798.2-14, Hawaii Administrative Rules, is amended to read as follows:
“§17-798.2-14 Method of computing child care payment.
(a) The following will be used to compute the child care payment:
(1) Monthly gross income;
(2) The caretaker’s hours of activity, except for individuals identified in sections 17-798.2-9(b)(2)(G) [
and], (J), and (L) [ ];
(3) The caretaker’s relationship to the child who reside with the caretaker, and the age of the child who needs care;
(4) The child care provider;
(5) The cost and hours of child care;
(6) The type of child care; and
(7) The need for care.
(b) The child care payment amount shall be determined by:
(1) Counting the caretaker’s activity hours to be engaged in for the month, as referenced in section 17-798.2-14(a)(2), comparing these activity hours with the child care hours needed, and always choosing the lesser hours; provide that:
(A) This is not needed for child protective services reasons as ordered by the court;
(B) This is not required for the Preschool Open Doors program; [
(C) In the case of a caretaker who is temporarily disabled in accordance with subparagraph 17-798.2-9(b)(2)(I), the activity hours shall be the same as the activity hours that the caretaker had prior to the temporary disability[ ]; and
(D) This is not required for a caretaker impacted by any federal-, state-, or county-declared emergency proclamation related to a man-made or natural disaster, or public health pandemic situation and who needs child care to search for employment or prepare for resuming employment.
(2) Identifying the type of child care selected and approved for each qualifying child, and using the child care rate table, Exhibit I, to select the appropriate rate for the care type that supports the hours needed for child care; provided that:
(A) For child protective services need is based on the number of hours of child care specified in the court order; [
(B) For the Preschool Open Doors program need is based on the number of hours child care requested by a caretaker [ ] ; and
(C) For a caretaker impacted by any federal-, state-, or county-declared emergency proclamation related to a man-made or natural disaster, or public health pandemic situation, need is based on full-time care.
(3) Comparing the child care allowance determined by subparagraphs (b)(1) and (2) and the actual child care cost, and choosing the lesser amount.
(4) Determining the family unit’s co-payment (conversely, the percentage of the department’s maximum rate allowable) based on the family unit’s monthly gross income, and using the co-payment rates established in Exhibit III, dated October 1, 2009, attached at the end of this chapter.
(5) Subtracting the family unit’s co-payment from the amount determined in subparagraph (b)(3).
(c) The family unit shall be responsible for any child care costs in excess of the maximum child care rates specified in section 17-798.2-12.
(d) The family unit shall be responsible to pay its share of the child care cost directly to the provider.
(e) The department shall project the family unit’s eligibility and monthly payments prospectively for the eligibility period.
(1) The initial payment shall be calculated from the date of eligibility to the end of the month, which may be for less than a full month, and shall be considered the first month of the eligibility period.
(2) When changes are reported during the eligibility period, the monthly payments shall be prospectively calculated for the remainder of the eligibility period.”
§4 Mandatory reporting. Section 17-798.2-15, Hawaii Administrative Rules, is amended to read as follows:
“§17-798.2-15 Mandatory reporting. (a) A caretaker who is a recipient of child care payments shall be responsible to report to the department within ten calendar days when the following changes occur:
(1) Monthly gross income and the source of the household income when it is in excess of the eighty-five per cent of the State Median Income for a family of the same size, except for:
(A) Department-licensed foster parents with approved activities that need child care; [or]
(B) Family units that receive child protective services [ ] ; or
(C) Family units that are impacted by any federal-, state-, or county-declared emergency proclamation related to a man-made or natural disaster, or public health pandemic situation.
(2) Address changes, including:
(A) Place of residence; and
(B) Mailing address;
(3) Household composition;
(4) Marital status;
(5) Child care provider;
(6) Cost of care;
(7) Child care type;
(8) Loss of activity,
(A) Except for family units that receive only Preschool Open Doors services; [
(B) Except for family units that receive child protective services; [
(C) Except for family units that are impacted by any federal-, state-, or county-declared emergency proclamation related to a man-made or natural disaster, or public health pandemic situation; and
(9) Closure of the child protective services case.
(b) Changes may be reported in writing, in person, or by telephone, and shall be supported by verifying documentation.
(c) When changes are reported pursuant to this section, the department shall take action on the reported changes and calculate payments for the balance of the eligibility period, after timely and adequate notice.
(1) Changes that are reported within ten calendar days of the occurrence shall be implemented in the first month following the month in which the change was reported;
(2) Changes that are reported after ten calendar days of the occurrence, that result in a higher payment, shall be implemented in the second month following the month in which the change was reported; and
(3) Changes that are reported that result in a lower payment shall be implemented in the first month following the month in which the change was reported, and the department shall recover any overpayments from the date of the occurrence.”