On March 11, Representative Tom Reed (R-NY) introduced H.R. 4206, the “Help Americans in Need Develop their Ultimate Potential Act,” also referred to as the “HAND UP Act.” This legislation would allow state and local providers of government sponsored social services to apply to establish and carry out “demonstration projects” for a length of up to five years with the stated goal of moving families and individuals “towards self sufficiency, reducing welfare dependence, and increasing work and earnings by testing methods of program integration and coordination of services.”
The bill does not provide a definition or example of what a demonstration project would entail. However, it would specifically enable state and local agencies to change programs under the U.S. Housing Act of 1937, portions of the Social Security Act, the Workforce Investment Act of 1998, and the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008.
The bill also states that its goal is to search for ways to deliver services in a more cost effective and efficient manner, allowing states to share in 50% of any savings acquired as a result of the project. A press release from Mr. Reed says that the goal of this bill is to “establish a pathway out of poverty for millions of Americans.”
The bill was referred to the House Committees on Agriculture, Financial Services, and Education and the Workforce. The bill is co-sponsored by Representatives Tim Griffin (R-AR), Mike Kelly (R-PA), David Reichert (R-WA), Steve Southerland (R-FL), and Todd Young (R-IN).
View the bill at: http://bit.ly/1dGN4Uq