1) Increase Child Support Pass Throughup to $200 per TANF family with two or more children: In the TANF program, all Child Support payments by the non-custodial parents are collected by the Department of Child Support Enforcement (DCSE). On child support, federally, Virginia is required to share the child support collected with the federal government except that the federal government will waive their share if the state passes through and disregards up to $100 for one child and $200 for two or more. Regrettably, VA is not taking full advantage of the federal offer to waive its share since it is only passing through $100, even when there are two or more kids.  

2) Our SALT proposal is reasonable since Virginia would be able to pass through that extra $100 to families with two or more kids at essentially half price (it would only cost the state the state share).  The federal government would be paying the other half.

3) Currently, the collected amount of Child support in excess of $100 per family ($31.9 million annually) is split 50–50 with the federal government.  Implementation of a pass-throughup to $200 per familywith two or more children, along with a disregard of the child support income in the calculation of TANF benefits, would mean that Virginia retains 50% of collections over the $200 cap—about $9 million would be sent to the federal government instead of the current $15.9 millionannual amount that is otherwise sent.

4) Given the unconscionably low level of TANF benefits, the depth of child poverty and the need to encourage responsibility for child support, Virginia should allow more of the child support to “pass-through” for the child’s benefit. This is pro-child. This is pro-family. Child support that is paid on behalf of poor children should benefit them, not the government, and we recommend it be done administratively.

5) Child support is a critical element of many families’ financial health: currently, for May 2015,DCSE collected a total of $4,193,366 on behalf of 15,326 TANF families, about 60 percent of TANF children in Virginia that are recipients of child support.

6) As noted above, Virginia Families who currently receive cash assistance (TANF) receive only $100 per month of the current child support collected on their behalf by DCSE. The State and Federal governments keep the remaining balance.However, unlike TANF families, non-TANF families receive 100% of the amount collected on their behalf.Depriving needy TANF children of child support otherwise payable to them is inherently unfair and is a grave injustice, an injustice that calls for correction.  It is essentiallyassessing a user fee on impoverished children eligible for TANF.

7) TANF families, like all poor and middle class families, need every dollar available to them for keeping food on the table, clothes on the backs of their children, meeting the demands for school supplies and education expenses, and shelter.  TANF payments have not kept pace with inflation: while the cost of living has increased more than 25 percent over the last 15 years, welfare payments have increased by a mere 10 percent.

8) Virginia can effectively pass through more of the federal share currently(approximate amount) $15.9 million by giving impoverished children more of the child support collected by the state on their behalf.  This includes passing though the state and federal share currentlywithheld.

9) The Child SupportPass Through increase, along with a disregard of the child support income in the calculation of TANF benefits, will help provide Virginia’s impoverished children with the food, clothing, educational expenses and shelter needed; and will, based on the Wisconsin statewide child support pass-through project, encourage more parents to cooperate with DCSE and to make child support payments more often and on time.

10) Not only would the pass-through help TANF families to move out of poverty, but it would also provide an additional “connect,” the strengtheningof family ties between the non- custodial parent and his/her children.