GENERAL ASSISTANCE (GA)
The General Assistance program provides cash benefits for food, clothing, shelter, and other essentials to adults ages 18 through 64, without minor dependents, who are temporarily disabled and who do not qualify for Social Security. To be eligible, the adult must have little or no income, not qualify for a federal category of assistance, and be certified by a DHS medical board to be unable to engage in any substantial employment of at least thirty hours per week for a period of at least sixty days.
The GA program is funded by a block-grant appropriated by the State Legislature each year. This means that to stay within the block-grant appropriation, adjustments to the monthly benefit amount may be made throughout the year based on the number of individuals who are participating in the program. Currently, the monthly benefit is $348 a month (effective April 2014) for an individual and may not exceed this amount by statute. Assets may not exceed $2,000 for a single person and $3,000 for a couple to maintain eligibility.
Program Goal: To provide temporary economic assistance to those eligible for financial support, to ensure they receive at least a minimally adequate standard of living.