Food Stamp Heating and Nonheating Standard Utility Allowances and Telephone Allowance
[32 Pa.B. 392]
Regulations at 55 Pa. Code § 501.7(a)(2) and (3) (relating to treatment of income) establish the amounts of the heating and nonheating standard utility allowances (SUAs) and telephone allowance for the Food Stamp Program. In addition, these regulations provide for revision of these amounts by publication of a notice in the Pennsylvania Bulletin. The allowances have been approved by the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) of the United States Department of Agriculture and are effective October 1, 2001.
The heating and nonheating SUAs are established in accordance with the requirements of 7 CFR 273.9(d)(6)(iii)(A) and (B). Notice is hereby given that the Department of Public Welfare (Department) is increasing the heating SUA from $292 to $333 and the nonheating SUA from $155 to $181. These allowances remain as shown until revised by publication of a notice in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
The Department recommends that the revisions of these allowances be codified in 55 Pa. Code § 501.7(a)(2).
The telephone allowance is established in accordance with the requirements of 7 CFR 273.9(d)(6)(iii)(A) and (B). Notice is hereby given that the Department is increasing the telephone allowance from $24 to $26. This allowance remains as shown until revised by publication of a notice in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
The Department recommends that the revisions of this allowance be codified in 55 Pa. Code § 501.7(a)(3).
The citations in 55 Pa. Code § 501.7(a)(1), (2) and (3) have been revised to reflect increases in the allowance approved by FNS and the references to the redesignated paragraphs in 7 CFR 273.9(d)(6).
Public comments may be made by contacting Edward J. Zogby, Director, Bureau of Policy, Office of Income Maintenance, Room 431, Health and Welfare Building, Harrisburg, PA 17120.
Persons with a disability may use the AT&T Relay Service by calling (800) 654-5984 (TDD users) or (800) 654-5988 (voice users).
FEATHER O. HOUSTOUN,
(Editor's Note: Deletions are shown in brackets and additions are shown as underscored.)
TITLE 55. PUBLIC WELFARE
PART II. PUBLIC ASSISTANCE MANUAL
Subpart L. FOOD STAMP PROGRAM
CHAPTER 501. FOOD STAMP DISCRETIONARY PROVISIONS
§ 501.7. Treatment of income.
(a) Income deductions.
(1) Heating standard utility allowance (SUA) and nonheating SUA--7 CFR 273.9(d)(6)[(i)(C)]. A CAO will offer an eligible household the opportunity to use the heating SUA, nonheating SUA or the household's actual utility costs except for actual telephone costs when computing the combined shelter and utility cost. The SUAs include a nonheating SUA and a heating SUA. The heating SUA is available to households which incur out-of-pocket heating or cooling, or both, costs, even if paid irregularly, separate and apart from their rent or mortgage payments. A household that receives energy assistance payments made under the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) is entitled to the heating SUA even if it does not incur out-of-pocket costs. The nonheating SUA is available to households which incur utility costs exclusive of heating or cooling costs, or both.
(2) Standard utility allowance amounts--7 CFR 273.9(d)(6) [(iii) and (vi)]. The nonheating SUA amount is [$155] $181 and the heating SUA amount is [$292] $333 per month effective October 1,  2001. The heating SUA/nonheating SUA amounts are approved by FNS and reviewed annually by the Department in accordance with provisions of 7 CFR 273.9(d)(6)[(vi)] (relating to income and deductions). Future adjustments will be issued by the Department as a notice in the Pennsylvania Bulletin and codified in this subpart.
(3) Telephone allowance--7 CFR 273.9(d)(6)[(v)(C)]. The telephone allowance is [$24] $26 per month effective October 1,  2001, regardless of the amount of the telephone charge. This allowance is available to households which incur telephone expenses. The Department has developed a method, that is FNS approved, for calculating the mandatory telephone allowance. Future adjustments will be issued by the Department as a notice in the Pennsylvania Bulletin and codified in this subpart.
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Fiscal Note: 14-NOT-315. No fiscal impact; (8) recommends adoption.
[Pa.B. Doc. No. 02-110. Filed for public inspection January 18, 2002, 9:00 a.m.]
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