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Guardianship Assistance

This program contains Recovery Act funding.
Number: 93.090
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Office: Administration for Children and Families

Program Information 

Program Number/Title (010):
93.090 Guardianship Assistance
Federal Agency (030):
Administration for Children and Families, Department of Health and Human Services
Authorization (040):
as amended; Social Security Act, Title IV, Part E, Section 473.
Objectives (050):
To provide Federal financial participation (FFP) to States, Indian Tribes, Tribal organizations and Tribal consortia (Tribes) who opt to provide guardianship assistance payments for the care of children by relatives who have assumed legal guardianship of eligible children for whom they previously cared as foster parents. This assistance is intended to prevent inappropriately long stays in foster care and to promote the healthy development of children through increased safety, permanency and well-being.
Types of Assistance (060):
Formula Grants
Uses and Use Restrictions (070):
Federal assistance may be used only in support of the care of children who meet the eligibility requirements and their siblings under certain situations as specified in the statute. All relatives assuming guardianship of such children are eligible for the nonrecurring expenses associated with obtaining legal guardianship up to $2000. States and Tribes may receive Federal financial participation (FFP) only if title IV-E plans have been approved by the Secretary.
Eligibility Requirements (080)
Applicant Eligibility (081):
Funds are available to States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and to Tribes with approved title IV-E plans.
Beneficiary Eligibility (082):
Beneficiaries are children who meet the following requirements: (1) the child has been eligible for title IV-E foster care maintenance payments while residing for at least six consecutive months in the home of the prospective relative guardian; and (2) the State or Tribe has determined that the permanency options of being returned home or adoption are not appropriate for the child; and (3) the child demonstrates a strong attachment to the prospective relative guardian and the prospective guardian is committed to caring permanently for the child; and (4) for children who have attained the age of 14, the child has been consulted regarding the kinship guardianship arrangement. Beneficiaries may also be siblings of eligible children placed in the same kinship guardianship arrangement. FFP is available to States and Tribes for payments made to a relative guardian in accordance with a kinship guardianship agreement that is in writing, negotiated and is binding.
Credentials/Documentation (083):
Costs are to be determined in accordance with OMB Circular No. A-87 and 45 CFR Part 92. OMB Circular No. A-87 applies to this program.
Application and Award Process (090)
Preapplication Coordination (091):
Preapplication coordination is not applicable. Environmental impact information is not required for this program. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.
Application Procedures (092):
OMB Circular No. A-102 applies to this program. This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-110.

091-Consultation is available to States and Tribes from ACF Regional Offices.

092-Applications are made in the form of a title IV-E Plan, prepared in the format provided by the ACF Children's Bureau. Title IV-E plans and amendments must be submitted to the ACF Regional Child Welfare Program Manager for approval.
Award Procedure (093):
Quarterly awards are made on the basis of estimated expenditures, which are later revised to include only actual allowable claimed expenditures. Next quarter estimates are due on July 30, October 30, January 30 and April 30 each year. Final decisions and awards are made by the Headquarters Office.
Deadlines (094):
Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.
Range of Approval/Disapproval Time (095):
Health and Human Services (HHS) will approve/disapprove applications (title IV-E plans or amendments to them) within 45 days of receipt by HHS.
Appeals (096):
Appeals are processed in accordance with HHS regulations in 45 CFR Part 16.
Renewals (097):
Awards remain effective without plan renewal but title IV-E plans may be amended as necessary.
Assistance Consideration (100)
Formula and Matching Requirements (101):
Statutory Formula: Funding is provided on an open-ended basis in accordance with sec. 474(a) of the Social Security Act.

Formula Grant Funding Level: Federal financial participation (FFP) is equal to the applicable Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP) rate (as defined by sec.1905(b) (sec. 479B(d) for Tribes) of the Social Security Act (i.e. from 50% to 83%, depending on the State or Tribe and the fiscal year) and as temporarily enhanced through Section 5001 of Public Law 111-5, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA)) for the total expended for kinship guardianship assistance payments; 75% of staff training costs; and 50% of other administrative costs. Short term training provided to kinship guardians was subject to a special FFP rate that varied by fiscal year from FY 2009 through FY 2012, but which was set at 75% for FY 2013 and thereafter.

Matching Requirements: The non-Federal share of program costs (difference between total cost and FFP) in each funding category constitutes the required match to be met by the title IV-E agency. Matching funds from State agencies must be appropriated monies raised from non-Federal revenue sources. Matching funds from Tribal agencies must also be appropriated monies, but may at the option of the Tribe include Federal funds specifically authorized by Federal statutes to be used as match for other Federal programs and, in accordance with 45 CFR 1356.68 for administration and training costs only, in-kind expenditures (or contributions) from allowable third party sources.
Matching Requirements: The non-Federal share of program costs (difference between total cost and FFP) in each funding category constitutes the required match to be met by this title IV-E agency. Matching funds from State agencies must the appropriate monies raised from non-Federal revenue sources. Matching funds from Tribal agencies must also be appropriated monies, but may at the option of the Tribe include Federal funds specifically authorized by Federal statutes to be used as match for other Federal programs and, in accordance with 45 CFR 1356.68, for administration and training cost only, and in-kind expenditures (or contributions) from allowable third party sources.
This program does not have MOE requirements.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance (102):
Federal financial participation is available to a State or Tribe operating under an approved title IV-E plan. The title IV-E agency may implement and claim allowable guardianship assistance program costs beginning on the first day of the quarter in which an approvable title IV-E plan amendment is submitted to the Administration for Children and families (ACF) to implement the guardianship assistance program. See the following for information on how assistance is awarded/released: Method of awarding/releasing assistance: Quarterly, through a letter of credit.
Post Assistance Requirements (110)
Reports (111):
Title IV-E agencies must report on the children assisted. Reports as required by the Secretary. No progress reports are required. No progress reports are required. Title IV-E agencies use form CB-496 to report estimates and expenditures and the number of children assisted; the expenditures report is required 30 days after the end of the quarter. other reports as required by the Secretary. No performance monitoring is required.
Audits (112):
In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A-133 (Revised, June 27, 2003), "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Non-Profit Organizations," nonfederal entities that expend financial assistance of $500,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Nonfederal entities that expend less than $500,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in Circular No. A-133. Audits are conducted in accordance with the requirements in 45 CFR 92.
Records (113):
States and Tribes must maintain all financial and programmatic records necessary for the proper and efficient operation of the program, including records of applications, determinations of eligibility, utilization of awarded grants and other funds for the provision of financial assistance and allocated indirect and direct administrative and training costs in accordance with requirements in Health and Human Services regulations at 45 CFR 92.42, and written guidance from the Administration for Children and Families.
Financial Information (120)
Obligations (122):
(Formula Grants) FY 13 $77,098,649; FY 14 est $85,000,000; and FY 15 est $99,000,000
Range and Average of Financial Assistance (123):
FY 2013: $3,741 to $27,861,643 with an average of $2,429,540. The program became available as an option for States as of October 7, 2008, and for Tribes as of October 1, 2009. Title IV-E agencies began separate financial reporting of program costs for quarters commencing in FY 2011. A number of States may still be in the process of submitting FY 2013 title IV-E claims for these costs. Therefore, complete data on the range and average of financial assistance is not yet available.
Program Accomplishments (130):
Fiscal Year 2013: Grants were provided to a total of 29 States (including the District of Columbia) assisting an average of 12,537 children per month. Fiscal Year 2014: It is anticipated that a total of 32 States (including the District of Columbia) and 4 additional Tribes will receive grant awards assisting 19,200 in-placement children each month. Fiscal Year 2015: It is anticipated that a total of 32 States (including the District of Columbia) and 4 Tribes will receive grant awards.
Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature (140):
See program guidance in ACYF-CB-PI-10-01 which can be found at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/laws_policies/policy/pi/2010pi1001.htm. Additional program guidance can be found in ACYF-PI-10-11 at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/laws_policies/policy/pi/2010/pi1011.htm. Also see the Health and Human Services (HHS) Grants Policy Statement found online at: http://www.hhs.gov/grantsnet/adminis/gpd/index.htm
Information Contacts (150)
Regional or Local Office (151) :
See Regional Agency Offices. Contact the Regional Child Welfare Program Manager, Administration for Children and Families, HHS, in the appropriate Regional Office. (See Appendix IV of the Catalog for a list of addresses of the Regional Offices.).
Headquarters Office (152):
Liliana Hernandez 1250 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, District of Columbia 20024 Email: liliana.hernandez@acf.hhs.gov Phone: (202) 205-8086
Website Address (153):
http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb
Examples of Funded Projects (170):
Not Applicable.
Criteria for Selecting Proposals (180):
Not Applicable.