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LRB-5543/1
TJD&EAW:all
January 2018 Special Session
2017 - 2018 LEGISLATURE
1February 16, 2018 - Printed by direction of Senate Chief Clerk.
AB3-engrossed,1,5 2An Act to amend 49.145 (3) (a); and to create 49.145 (3) (c), 49.155 (1m) (cr),
349.155 (2m), 49.79 (1p) and 49.823 of the statutes; relating to: asset
4restrictions on eligibility for FoodShare, Wisconsin Works, and Wisconsin
5Shares.
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
Engrossment information:
The text of Engrossed January 2018 Special Session Assembly Bill 3 consists
of the following documents adopted in the assembly on February 15, 2018: the bill
as affected by Assembly Amendment 1.
Content of Engrossed January 2018 Special Session Assembly Bill 3:
This bill changes the financial eligibility requirements for Wisconsin Works
(W-2), Wisconsin Shares, and FoodShare.
Under current law, the Department of Children and Families administers the
W-2 program, which provides work experience and benefits for low-income
custodial parents who are at least 18 years old. Under current law, an individual is
only eligible for W-2 if he or she meets certain eligibility criteria, including that the
individual's family may not have more than $2,500 in liquid assets. Combined equity
in vehicles up to $10,000 and a homestead are excluded from the calculation of liquid
assets under current law. The bill specifies that a homestead is excluded from the
calculation of liquid assets if it is valued at no more than 200 percent of the statewide
median value for homes, unless the individual qualifies for a hardship exemption

established by DCF by rule. In addition, any agricultural land owned by the family
is excluded when calculating the value of the homestead under the bill.
Under current law, an individual who is the parent of a child under the age of
13 or, if the child is disabled, under the age of 19, who needs child care services to
participate in various education or work activities, and who satisfies other eligibility
criteria may receive a child care subsidy for child care services under Wisconsin
Shares. Under current law, an individual is only eligible for Wisconsin Shares if he
or she meets certain eligibility criteria, including that the individual's family may
not have more than $25,000 in liquid assets. The bill provides that an individual is
not eligible for Wisconsin Shares if his or her family owns more than one home or
owns a home that is used as the individual's primary residence and that is valued at
more than 200 percent of the statewide median home value. Any agricultural land
owned by the family is excluded when calculating the value of the primary residence
under the bill. The bill also specifies that an individual is not eligible for Wisconsin
Shares if his or her family owns personal vehicles with a combined equity value of
more than $20,000. These restrictions only apply to new applicants under Wisconsin
Shares under the bill.
The bill grants DCF the authority to promulgate a rule to establish a hardship
exemption for the asset limitations for Wisconsin Shares. Under the bill, if an
individual qualifies for a hardship limitation under the rule promulgated by DCF,
the asset limitations established under the bill for Wisconsin Shares do not apply to
that individual.
The bill provides a similar asset-related restriction on eligibility for
FoodShare. FoodShare, also known as the food stamp program and the federal
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, is administered by the Department of
Health Services. FoodShare provides benefits to eligible low-income households for
the purchase of food. As of July 1, 2018, unless the federal government disapproves,
an individual who is not elderly, blind, or disabled and whose household has more
than $25,000 in liquid assets, such as cash or financial resources that can be
converted to cash without penalties, is ineligible for FoodShare benefits. The bill, to
the extent allowed under federal law, makes an individual who is not elderly or
disabled and who is at least 19 years of age ineligible to participate in FoodShare in
a month if the individual owns more than one home; the individual owns a primary
residence that is worth more than 200 percent of the statewide median home value,
excluding the value of agricultural land; or the combined equity value of vehicles,
except those used for business purposes, owned by the individual is more than
$20,000. The asset restriction does not apply to an individual who has a hardship
exemption, if DHS promulgates rules regarding a hardship exemption.
The bill requires DHS and DCF to perform a comparison, at least once every
three months, of each department's respective public benefit database against
nationally recognized death record databases. If DHS or DCF determines that a
public benefits participant is deceased, DHS or DCF must designate the individual

as ineligible on its database. These requirements do not apply to DCF with respect
to the Wisconsin Shares program.
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
AB3-engrossed,1 1Section 1. 49.145 (3) (a) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB3-engrossed,3,102 49.145 (3) (a) Resource limitations. The individual is a member of a Wisconsin
3works Works group whose assets do not exceed $2,500 in combined equity value. In
4Except as provided under par. (c), in determining the combined equity value of
5assets, the Wisconsin works Works agency shall exclude the equity value of vehicles
6up to a total equity value of $10,000, and one home, valued at no more than 200
7percent of the statewide median value for homes,
that serves as the homestead for
8the Wisconsin works Works group. In calculating the value of the homestead, the
9Wisconsin Works agency shall exclude the value of agricultural land owned by the
10Wisconsin Works group.
AB3-engrossed,2 11Section 2. 49.145 (3) (c) of the statutes is created to read:
AB3-engrossed,3,1812 49.145 (3) (c) Hardship exemption. The department may promulgate a rule
13that establishes a hardship exemption for the resource limitation under par. (a). If
14an individual qualifies for a hardship exemption under the department's rule, the
15Wisconsin Works agency shall exclude the equity value of vehicles up to a total equity
16value of $10,000, and of one home, valued at any amount, that serves as the
17homestead for the Wisconsin Works group in determining whether the Wisconsin
18Works group's combined equity value of assets exceeds $2,500.
AB3-engrossed,3 19Section 3. 49.155 (1m) (cr) of the statutes is created to read:
AB3-engrossed,3,2120 49.155 (1m) (cr) Except as provided under sub. (2m), the individual's family
21meets all of the following asset restrictions:
AB3-engrossed,4,5
11. The individual's family owns no more than one home, which is used as the
2individual's primary residence, and which is valued at no more than 200 percent of
3the statewide median value for homes. In calculating the value of a home under this
4subdivision, the value of any agricultural land owned by the individual's family shall
5be excluded.
AB3-engrossed,4,76 2. The combined equity value of any vehicles, except those used for business
7purposes, owned by the individual's family is no more than $20,000.
AB3-engrossed,4 8Section 4. 49.155 (2m) of the statutes is created to read:
AB3-engrossed,4,129 49.155 (2m) Hardship exemption. The department may promulgate a rule that
10establishes a hardship exemption for the asset restrictions under sub. (1m) (cr). If
11the individual qualifies for a hardship exemption under the department's rule, the
12asset restrictions under sub. (1m) (cr) do not apply to the individual.
AB3-engrossed,5 13Section 5. 49.79 (1p) of the statutes is created to read:
AB3-engrossed,4,1614 49.79 (1p) Eligibility; restrictions on certain assets. (a) In this subsection,
15“elderly, blind, or disabled individual” has the meaning given for “elderly or disabled
16member” in 7 USC 2012 (j).
AB3-engrossed,4,2017 (b) To the extent allowed under federal law, an individual who is not an elderly,
18blind, or disabled individual and who is at least 19 years of age is ineligible to
19participate in the food stamp program in a month in which any of the following
20applies:
AB3-engrossed,4,2121 1. The individual owns more than one home.
AB3-engrossed,4,2422 2. The individual owns a primary residence that is worth more than 200 percent
23of the statewide median home value. In calculating the home value, the value of any
24agricultural land owned by the individual is excluded.
AB3-engrossed,5,2
13. The combined equity value of vehicles, except those used for business
2purposes, owned by the individual is more than $20,000.
AB3-engrossed,5,53 (c) If the department promulgates a rule establishing a hardship exemption,
4par. (b) does not apply to an individual who meets the criteria for a hardship
5exemption.
AB3-engrossed,5j 6Section 5j. 49.823 of the statutes is created to read:
AB3-engrossed,5,17 749.823 Public benefit database review. The department of health services
8and the department of children and families shall, at least once every 3 months,
9perform a comparison of each department's respective public benefit database
10information against nationally recognized databases that contain information on
11death records, including the federal social security administration's Death Master
12File, to identify participants in public benefit programs that are deceased. If a
13department determines during a review under this section that a participant is
14deceased, the department shall designate that individual as ineligible for benefits in
15any applicable database. The requirements under this section do not apply to the
16department of children and families with regard to child care subsidies under s.
1749.155.
AB3-engrossed,6 18Section 6. Initial applicability.
AB3-engrossed,5,2119 (1) Wisconsin Shares eligibility requirements. The creation of section 49.155
20(1m) (cr) of the statutes first applies to a Wisconsin Shares participant who applies
21for the program on the effective date of this subsection.
AB3-engrossed,7 22Section 7. Effective date.
AB3-engrossed,5,2323 (1) Restrictions on assets. This act takes effect on January 1, 2019.
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