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Reforms to TANF May Be Included in The 2023 Legislative Session


The New Mexico Center on Law and Poverty provided recommendations to the Legislative Health and Human Services Committee on ways to improve the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program.

TANF, or NM Works as it is known in New Mexico, offers crisis-affected families short-term financial support for things like rent, clothes, utilities, and necessities like diapers that are not provided by SNAP EBT (officially known as food stamps) benefits.

According to Gonzalez, when low-income homes receive financial support, their children gain the most long-term.

“Giving low-income families with children more money will have long-term effects,” according to Gonzalez.

On 29 November, Gonzalez addressed the temporary Legislative Health and Human Services Committee with a list of concerns and potential TANF program modifications.

Restoring work requirement exemptions, raising the cash grant amount, granting flexibility to families attempting to meet program necessities, ending the State’s retention of child support payments for households, and ceasing the use of child support payments in benefit calculations are just a few of the initiatives that will affect how much money the children receive from the TANF program as a result of a parent’s claimed rule violation.

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If a parent doesn’t deliver a paycheck in person at the scheduled time to their nearby Department of Human Services-Income Support Division field office, one of the penalties reduces the amount of TANF they are eligible for.

Some TANF participants may struggle with transportation, making it difficult for them at times to get the necessary documents to the DHS-ISD office on time.

It can be corrected once a year within 30 days and is regarded as a penalty. Gonzalez told; other states have less strict laws.