Notice of Public Hearings on Proposed Rules Limiting and Restricting Notices and Appeals Process for Public Assistance Beneficiaries

Come to the hearing. Stop the raid on human services!

The situationDHS is proposing new rules on appeals and hearings that, if f they become final, would ‎seriously jeopardize applicants’ and beneficiaries’ ability to get and keep the TANF, SNAP, and Medicaid ‎‎(including home services) they are entitled to. The proposed rules do not provide customers with due ‎process, are unnecessarily complicated and confusing, and in some cases are in conflict with the federal ‎statutes and regulations protecting the rights of those eligible for the various benefits programs. ‎

For example, the proposed rule don’t require adequate notices about agency actions; they have different ‎appeal deadlines for different programs; they do not assure customers’ access to their records for appeals; ‎they require appellants to pinpoint why the agency action appealed is wrong rather than requiring the ‎agency to establish that its action is right; and they change the locations where hearings will be held to ‎places where customers cannot attend (long term medical assistance cases are assigned to Chicago or ‎Decatur). ‎

In sum, under the proposed rules eligible people will be denied benefits and terminated from benefits ‎causing severe harm. I’m attaching the formal comments opposing the proposed rules that LAF, Prairie ‎State Legal Services, Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation, and the Shriver Center submitted to ‎DHS. Please find the time to look at them for a better understanding of just how dangerous these ‎proposed rules are to people who need public benefits. ‎

FYI, the proposed rules were published in the May 29, 2015, Illinois Register. Here’s a link to ‎that edition http://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/index/register/register_volume39_issue22.pdf/. The DHS proposed rules begin on page 7301. ‎
Here is a copy of DHS’s notice and directions about the August 25 and 26 hearings. ‎
DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES
NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARINGS ON PROPOSED AMENDMENTS
‎1) Heading of the Part: Practice in Administrative Hearings
‎2) Code Citation: 89 Ill. Adm. Code 14‎
‎3) Register Citation to Notice of Proposed Rules: May 29, 2015; 39 Ill. Reg. 7332‎
‎4) Date, Time and Location of Public Hearings:‎
Tuesday, August 25, 2015 10:00a.m. – 12:00p.m.
Michael J. Howlett Building
‎2nd & Edwards Streets
Springfield IL
Wednesday, August 26, 2015 1:00p.m. – 3:00p.m
Michael A. Bilandic Bldg.
‎160 N. LaSalle St.
Auditorium Room C-500, 5th Floor
‎160 N. LaSalle
Chicago IL
‎5) Other Pertinent Information: The hearings will be held for the sole purpose of gathering public ‎comments on the proposed amendments. Persons interested in presenting testimony at this ‎hearing are advised that the Illinois Department of Human Services will adhere to the following ‎procedures in the conduct of the hearing:‎
a) No oral testimony shall exceed an aggregate of ten (10) minutes.‎
b) Each person presenting oral testimony shall provide to the hearing officer a written (preferably ‎typed) copy of such testimony at the time the oral testimony is presented. No oral testimony will ‎be accepted without a written copy of the testimony being provided.‎
c) No person will be recognized to speak for a second time until all persons wishing to testify ‎have done so.‎

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About Kathy Powers
Advocacy is my therapy. Chicago, IL

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