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December 2015 Newsletter – Community Action Association of Pennsylvania

Community Action Association of Pennsylvania

CAAP News Update – December 2015

Community Services Block Grant Update

On Tuesday, Congress unveiled a massive FY 2016 omnibus appropriations bill…The new spending agreement increases CSBG funding by $41 million. This is approximately a 6% increase. CSBG funding rises from the current $673.6 million to $714.9 million

Weatherization and LIHEAP

When Congress unveiled the FY 2016 omnibus appropriations bill, the Weatherization Program also received increased funding of $21 million…

Pennsylvania State Budget Impasse: Day 170

News regarding the budget impasse seems to change by the hour these days. On Monday, December 7, both the Senate and House released their revised spending bills…

Payday Lending

Draft legislation is being circulated in Harrisburg called the "Financial Services Credit Ladder" that would allow high cost installment loans to be made in PA, like those seen in California. This time, the predatory loan product is different. Installment loans, unlike traditional two-week payday loans, are paid back over time instead of one lump payment. But this doesn't make the loans any safer. In fact, the draft bill has a deceptive interest rate capped at 36% that could reach as high as 200-300% because there is no cap on the related fees. The draft bill also would allow a borrower to take out an unlimited number of loans at once.

Here's one example from the Check N' Go website: For a $3,000 installment loan paid in 26 bi-weekly installments, the finance charge is $4,654.71 for a total payback of $7,654.71 in one year (218.64% APR)…see newsletter for talking points for opposing this type of legislation.

Able-Bodied Adults Without Dependents (ABAWDs)

An ABAWD is an able-bodied adult between 18 and 49 years old who is not disabled, pregnant, or living in a household with minor children. The federal SNAP (food stamp) time limits for ABAWDs go back into effect January 1, 2016 in Pennsylvania. This is a federal law that was suspended for many years. Individuals considered ABAWDs may only receive SNAP benefits for a total of 3 full months within a 36-month period – unless the person meets an “exemption” or complies with certain work requirements. Pennsylvania is delaying implementation of the time limit until March 1, 2016, so no one will be cut off until June 1. However, it is still best for ABAWDs to be found exempt as soon as possible…

Conferences

Community Action Partnership
2016 Management and Leadership Training Conference
January 6-8, 2016, in New Orleans, LA

National Association for State Community Service Programs
2016 Mid-Winter Training Conference
February 22-26, 2016, in Alexandria, VA

National Community Action Foundation
2016 Legislative Conference
March 15-18, 2016 in Washington, D.C.

Community Action Association of Pennsylvania
Annual Conference: A Measure of Success
April 20-21, 2016 in Harrisburg, PA

www.thecaap.org

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