This demonstration evaluated the Ohio Works First (OWF) provisions implemented under Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF). OWF provisions include: (1) completion of a self-sufficiency contract, (2) more generous income disregards, (3) a 36-out-of-any-60 month time limit, and (4) whole family sanctions. In Ohio, local jurisdictions have great flexibility in running their TANF programs, and this evaluation looked carefully at implementation efforts in 10 counties. There was great variation in how counties implemented TANF from both an administrative and policy standpoint. There were different degrees of specialization of caseworkers with some counties splitting the eligibility and work related components and others not doing so. In some cases various activities were contracted out while others were handled in-house. Counties offered various approaches to diversion activities and different services and incentives to support persons being diverted. There were differences in how counties handled persons that were approaching the end of their time limits. Some had dedicated workers that worked with these cases. During the 5-year period of the study the caseload dropped dramatically in all counties.  While OWF participation and cash assistance declined, total family income and child well-being remained constant.

PIC ID: 6758
Agency Sponsor: ACF-OPRE, Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation
Federal Contact: Sternbach, Leonard, 415-437-7671
Performer: Ohio Department of Human Services, Columbus, OH

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