Children in Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Child-Only Cases with Relative Caregivers. 2.7.2 Composition of Child-Only Caseload


A critical issue for states to be able to better assess their needs regarding child-only cases is the ability to clearly describe their state's TANF caseload composition, specifically the types and proportions of child-only caseloads currently in their state. During telephone conversations with Administration for Children and Families (ACF) Regional Administrators, study staff asked regional and state representatives questions regarding the state-specific TANF caseload composition. Additionally, project staff inquired if child- only cases were increasing, decreasing, or remaining stable in recent months. Finally, researchers inquired as to the presence of any state-specific collaboration efforts between the TANF system and the child welfare system.

Table 2-6.
Child-Only References in Annual State TANF Plans
  Definition Administrative
(e.g., participation calculation)
Cash Grant Kinship Care Program No Reference
Alabama       X  
Alaska   X      
Arizona     X    
Arkansas         X
California         X
Colorado       X  
Connecticut         X
Delaware         X
Florida X X   X  
District of Columbia X        
Georgia     X    
Hawaii         X
Idaho X X      
Illinois   X X    
Indiana         X
Iowa X X      
Kansas X X      
Kentucky   X X X  
Louisiana     X X  
Maine X X      
Maryland X X   X  
Massachusetts   X X    
Michigan X   X    
Minnesota       X  
Montana   X      
Nebraska         X
Nevada       X  
New Hampshire     X X  
New Jersey X X X X  
New Mexico         X
New York   X X    
North Carolina X X      
North Dakota X X      
Ohio   X X    
Oklahoma     X X  
Oregon     X    
Pennsylvania X X      
Rhode Island   X      
South Carolina     X X  
South Dakota         X
Tennessee X X      
Texas X        
Utah         X
Vermont         X
Virginia X X X X  
Washington X X      
West Virginia         X
Wisconsin X X X X  
Wyoming         X
TOTALS 17 22 16 14 13
Sources: State TANF plans.

Table 2-7 summarizes the child-only proportion of each state's TANF caseload (DHHS, 2003) and the information communicated by ACF Regional Administrators regarding child-only trends and practices by state. Regional Administrators often had difficulty assessing if child-only cases were increasing, decreasing, or remaining stable in the states in their regions. Some of the difficulty in making this assessment stemmed from a lag in data reported to the state or federal offices. As a result, the information reported below is often based on a state or region's "impression" of the stability of their child-only caseload and not on empirical data.

Table 2-7.
Child-Only Trends and Practices by State
  Proportion TANF Caseload That is Child-Only Majority Type of Child-Only Cases Percentage of Child-Only Cases Collaboration with Child Welfare System
Increasing Decreasing Stable Formal Informal None
Alabama 51.6 Parental SSI Nonparental X     X    
Alaska 18.5 Parental Immigrant     X   X  
Arizona 45.4 Unable to Determine X     X    
Arkansas 41.9 Parental SSI     X   X  
California 41.5 Unable to Determine     X   X  
Colorado 41.5 Nonparental X     X    
Connecticut 34.6 Unable to Determine     X   X  
Delaware 43.5 Unable to Determine X       X  
District of Columbia 26.2 Unable to Determine X       X  
Florida 58.0 Nonparental     X X    
Georgia 49.8 Parental SSI     X     X
Hawaii 16.1 Nonparental     X     X
Idaho 73.6 Nonparental     X     X
Illinois 38.0 Parental SSI X       X  
Indiana 22.0 Unable to Determine     X   X  
Iowa 23.9 Unable to Determine     X   X  
Kansas 32.9 Unable to Determine     X   X  
Kentucky 41.0 Parental SSI     X   X  
Louisiana 46.2 SSI parental Nonparental     X X    
Maine 24.4 Unable to Determine X       X  
Maryland 39.4 Nonparental     X   X  
Massachusetts 38.8 Parental SSI     X   X  
Michigan 35.8 Nonparental X       X  
Minnesota 21.0 Parental SSI     X     X
Mississippi 49.5 Parental SSI and Nonparental     X   X  
Missouri 27.2 Unable to Determine     X   X  
Montana 20.7 Unable to Determine X       X  
Nebraska 34.1 Unable to Determine     X   X  
Nevada 46.2 Parental SSI     X   X  
New Hampshire 28.3 Unable to Determine     X   X  
New Jersey 38.4 Nonparental X     X    
New Mexico 21.3 Unable to Determine     X   X  
New York 28.3 Nonparental and Parental SSI X         X
North Carolina 50.9 Parental SSI X       X  
North Dakota 26.6 Parental Immigrant X       X  
Ohio 44.7 Unable to Determine X         X
Oklahoma 45.0 Nonparental     X   X  
Oregon 47.5 Parental Sanction     X   X  
Pennsylvania 32.1 Unable to Determine X     X    
Rhode Island 18.2 Unable to Determine X       X  
South Carolina 46.2 Nonparental X       X  
South Dakota 55.5 Parental Immigrant X       X  
Tennessee 30.2 Nonparental     X   X  
Texas 34.1 Nonparental Parental Immigrant X     X    
Utah 32.7 Nonparental     X   X  
Vermont 17.1 Unable to Determine     X   X  
Virginia 43.9 Nonparental X       X  
Washington 31.7 Parental Sanctioned     X   X  
West Virginia 29.4 Parental SSI     X   X  
Wisconsin 66.3 Nonparental X       X  
Wyoming 70.4 Unable to Determine X         X
Sources: DHHS, 2003; personal communication with ACF Regional Administrators.

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