TANF "Leavers", Applicants, and Caseload Studies: Data Files



Under the ASPE-funded Welfare Outcomes Grants, a number of states and large counties have collected and analyzed administrative and survey data on TANF leavers, TANF applicants, and the current TANF caseload. ASPE is working with grantees to make these data available to researchers while protecting confidentiality of the data. Guidance on producing data files was developed to assist grantees with some of the technical issues related to producing and documenting the data files. In addition, ASPE has established an interagency agreement with the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) to make grantees' data files available at the NCHS Research Data Center, in order to provide researchers with access to the data while preventing disclosure of confidential information.

Guidance on Producing Data Files

Producing and Documenting Data Files: Guidance for ASPE Welfare Outcomes Grantees. October 2000. Prepared by ORC Macro, under direction of Welfare Outcomes Data Files Work Group and ASPE staff.

How to Access Data Files

ASPE has entered into an interagency agreement with the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) to facilitate placement of Welfare Outcomes files at the NCHS Research Data Center (RDC). To gain access to the data, a researcher will have to apply for the data by submitting a structured research proposal, sign an agreement not to disclose individual identities, and either come to the Research Data Center in Hyattsville, Maryland, or use a remote access (electronic) system (i.e., send SAS code through email). Applications for use of data will be reviewed and research use of the data will be monitored to prevent breaches in confidentiality and inappropriate disclosure of data. For example, the NCHS Data Center does not allow researchers to print out individual observations or cells with fewer than five observations.

To support the ongoing maintenance of the restricted access files at the Data Center, NCHS charges modest researcher access fees. Currently, the NCHS Data Center charges $1,000 per week for on-site access, or $500-$1,000 per month for remote access, depending on the size of the files. In order to alleviate burden to researchers and encourage access to the Welfare Outcomes data files, ASPE plans to provide some subsidy of researcher fees, up to a set amount per project and a set amount of projects.

Grantee Data Types and Availability

Types and Availability of Grantee Data
State/Region Leavers Diversion
Administrative Data Survey Data
Arizona NCHS NCHS    
Colorado       Expected
Contra Costa, CA   NCHS NCHS  
Cuyahoga, OH NCHS NCHS    
District of Columbia NCHS NCHS   NCHS
Georgia NCHS NCHS    
Iowa NCHS NCHS    
Los Angeles, CA   NCHS    
Maryland       Expected
Massachusetts   NCHS    
Missouri NCHS NCHS   Expected
New York Expected Expected Expected  
San Mateo, CA   NCHS NCHS  
South Carolina NCHS NCHS NCHS Expected
Washington NCHS NCHS NCHS  
Wisconsin NCHS NCHS NCHS  
  • NCHS: Files available at NCHS
  • Expected: Files expected, but not available yet.
  • Forthcoming: Documentation available on ASPE site, but data not yet at NCHS.
  • Blank: Data not available

File Descriptions and Documentation

File descriptions and documentation for each completed data file are available from this web page.  Click on the grantee name to see what's available; click on the data type in brackets to download the documentation as a zip file.  Files currently available (or soon to be available) at NCHS include: