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New Mexico reinstating cash assistance transition bonus welfare benefit

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(The Center Square) – Starting next month, the New Mexico Human Services Department will reinstate its Cash Assistance Transition Bonus Program for families participating in the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program.

The program aims to provide a work incentive for families who lose welfare eligibility due to higher earnings.

Families who qualify will receive $200 per month for up to 18 months in hopes of eliminating the welfare cliff effect, according to a press release from the New Mexico Human Services Department.

The New Mexico Legislature provided HSD with $1.8 million to reinstate this program which the state discontinued in 2011.

“The goal of this program is to convert the cliff into a ramp that allows more time to support a family transitioning out of TANF,” Karmela Martinez, HSD’s Income Support Director, said. “The TBP incentive has been shown to improve the quality of life of parents and children by increasing family income, resources and support.”

To qualify for the reinstated program, people must meet the following requirements:

Maintain at least 30 hours per week in paid employment Have received at least 3 months of TANF benefits in their lifetime Received one month of TANF in the past three months Have not received 18 months of TBP or received 60 months of TANF assistance Have income under 150% of the Federal Poverty Level

“This program also provides ongoing supportive services such as SNAP food supports, Medicaid, childcare, employment counseling, and work-related expenses to eligible participants,” the release said.

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