Thursday, July 18, 2024
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Monday, September 22, 2014
Hawaii Department of Human Services Released from Federal Injunction
By News Release @ 6:27 PM :: 3994 Views :: Hawaii State Government

Hawaii Department of Human Services Released from Federal Injunction

News Release from Hawaii Department of Human Services

HONOLULU – The Department of Human Services (DHS) Benefit, Employment and Support Services Division (BESSD) has successfully closed a February 2011 class action lawsuit for failure to issue Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits within timeframes outlined by federal law. To address the application backlog, BESSD developed and implemented the Business Process Re-engineering (BPR) project, which converted the former Case Management system to a Process Management system.

Between Oct. 1, 2013 and Aug. 31, 2014, the average monthly timeliness rate for SNAP applications increased to 96.83 percent, a 30-percent improvement since Gov. Neil Abercrombie came into office.

“BESSD eligibility workers now consistently review and determine applicant eligibility within the federally mandated period of 30 days and seven days for emergencies,” said Pankaj Bhanot, BESSD Administrator.

As a result of these measurable improvements and successes, the U.S. District Court recently issued an Order of Settlement and Dismissal.  “The dismissal is most welcome,” said DHS Director Patricia McManaman. “It is really a testament to the dedication and hard work of the DHS BESSD staff.”

Dismissal of the lawsuit follows a $724,000 federal Food and Nutrition (FNS) Service bonus to BESSD for the nation’s most improved SNAP Program Access Index. The BESSD also received the 2014 Global Case Management Award for Excellence in Social Services for its nationally recognized enterprise content management solutions. Combined with the reengineered business processing, both initiatives contributed significantly to the improved application processing rates.

The class action lawsuit addressed application backlogs that accrued between 2008 and 2011, a period when the number of Hawaii SNAP recipients increased from 93,956 to more than 179,700 participants. During that same period, DHS also was operating with a severely reduced workforce and limited program funding. In some locations, timely application processing rates dropped to 29 percent.

Today, SNAP application processing rates vary between 96-98 percent, and BESSD continues to exceed federal requirements. Currently, an estimated 98,360 Hawaii households (193,446 individuals) receive SNAP assistance each month. On average, BESSD issues $43.3 million in benefits each month to Hawaii SNAP recipients.

---30---

Links

TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote

2aHawaii

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

AntiPlanner

Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Broken Trust

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

DVids Hawaii

FIRE

Fix Oahu!

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute

Habele.org

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii Legal News

Hawaii Legal Short-Term Rental Alliance

Hawaii Matters

Hawaii Military History

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Together

HiFiCo

Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

House Minority Blog

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

July 4 in Hawaii

Land and Power in Hawaii

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

MentalIllnessPolicy.org

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

NAMI Hawaii

Natatorium.org

National Parents Org Hawaii

NFIB Hawaii News

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Obookiah

OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

Practical Policy Institute of Hawaii

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii

RailRipoff.com

Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

School Choice in Hawaii

SenatorFong.com

Talking Tax

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

Waagey.org

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii