A05499 Summary:

SPONSORRosenthal L
Rpld §303-a, add §131-y, Soc Serv L
Relates to state assistance for food and vet expenses for guide dogs, hearing dogs and service dogs of individuals qualifying for social services; requires regulations set an amount of no less than $50 a month; clarifies that service dogs do not have to be certified to qualify for such benefits.
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A05499 Actions:

03/15/2023referred to social services
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A05499 Committee Votes:

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A05499 Floor Votes:

There are no votes for this bill in this legislative session.
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A05499 Memo:

submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
SPONSOR: Rosenthal L
  TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the social services law, in relation to assistance for guide dogs, hearing dogs and service dogs and to repeal section 303-a of such law relating thereto   PURPOSE: This bill includes food and veterinary expenditures in the list of expenses used to calculate a disabled person's social service benefits.   SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: Section one repeals section 303-a of the social services law and adds a new section 131-y. Section two sets forth the effective date.   JUSTIFICATION: Certain expenses are incurred for necessities, such as for housing and heat. These expenses are then used in calculations to reduce the total income an individual has when applying or reapplying for social service benefits. Many disabled individuals require the assistance of a guide, hearing or other form of service dog, to perform basic tasks associated with daily life, making the service dog a necessity. Like any other companion animal, service dogs need sustenance and regular veterinary care, which can be very costly. It is only logical that the cost of regular care for the animal should be considered what it is, a necessity, and calculated as an unavoidable expense when attempting to receive or keep assistance such as Medicaid, Medicare or supplemental nutrition assistance bene- fits. This legislation will codify the existing policy of the Office of Tempo- rary and Disability Assistance when it reviews qualified expenses during fair hearings.   LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2021-22: A.1302 - Referred to Ways and Means; S.6419 - Referred to Social Services 2019-20: A.678 - Referred to Social Services 2017-18: A.4938 - Reported to Ways and Means 2015-16: A.7489 - Reported to Ways and Means   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: Undetermined.   EFFECTIVE DATE: This bill shall take effect on the one hundred and eightieth day after it shall have become a law.
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A05499 Text:

                STATE OF NEW YORK
                               2023-2024 Regular Sessions
                   IN ASSEMBLY
                                     March 15, 2023
        Introduced  by  M. of A. L. ROSENTHAL, OTIS -- read once and referred to
          the Committee on Social Services
        AN ACT to amend the social services law, in relation to  assistance  for
          guide  dogs, hearing dogs and service dogs and to repeal section 303-a
          of such law relating thereto

          The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and  Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
     1    Section  1. Section 303-a of the social services law is REPEALED and a
     2  new section 131-y is added to read as follows:
     3    § 131-y. Assistance for guide dogs, hearing dogs and service dogs.  1.
     4  It  shall be the duty of the social services official to provide assist-
     5  ance, in accordance with regulations of the department, to a person with
     6  a disability using a guide dog, hearing dog or service dog who has  been
     7  determined to be eligible for or is receiving, including but not limited
     8  to,  federal  supplemental security income benefits, supplemental nutri-
     9  tion assistance program benefits, medical assistance for  needy  persons
    10  and/or additional state payments under this chapter, for the purchase of
    11  food and the cost of veterinarian expenses for such dog.
    12    2.  Such regulations of the department shall fix an amount of not less
    13  than fifty dollars a month, and the method and frequency of distribution
    14  and procedures for the determination and periodical  redetermination  of
    15  eligibility for such assistance.
    16    3.  Such assistance shall not be granted to any person for whom earned
    17  income has been exempted for such purpose pursuant  to  federal  law  or
    18  regulation.
    19    4.  The  full  amount  properly  expended by social services districts
    20  under this section, including costs of administration,  shall  be  reim-
    21  bursed by the state.
    22    5.  For  purposes  of  this section, "service dog" shall mean any dog,
    23  regardless of certification, under the control of the  person  using  or
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.

        A. 5499                             2
     1  training  it  and  that  has been or is being individually trained to do
     2  work or perform tasks for the benefit of a person with a disability.
     3    § 2. This act shall take effect on the one hundred eightieth day after
     4  it shall have become a law.
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A05499 LFIN:

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