New York City Council Header
File #: Int 1629-2019    Version: Name: Requiring the department of social services/human resources administration to report on additional and total wait times.
Type: Introduction Status: Committee
Committee: Committee on General Welfare
On agenda: 6/26/2019
Enactment date: Law number:
Title: A Local Law to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to requiring the department of social services/human resources administration to report on additional and total wait times
Sponsors: Ritchie J. Torres
Council Member Sponsors: 1
Summary: This bill would require the Department of Social Services/Human Resources Administration (“DSS/HRA”) to report the total time a visitor spent at a job center or SNAP center and the additional time a visitor spent waiting in between appointments at a job center or SNAP center. Currently DSS/HRA is only required to report the amount of time a visitor of a job center spent waiting from when they have checked-in to when they are called to begin their first appointment.
Indexes: Report Required
Attachments: 1. Summary of Int. No. 1629-A, 2. Summary of Int. No. 1629, 3. Int. No. 1629, 4. June 26, 2019 - Stated Meeting Agenda with Links to Files, 5. Proposed Int. No. 1629-A - 7/8/19, 6. Hearing Transcript - Stated Meeting 6-26-19, 7. Minutes of the Stated Meeting - June 26, 2019

Proposed Int. No. 1629-A

 

By Council Member Torres

 

A Local Law to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to requiring the department of social services/human resources administration to report on additional and total wait times

 

Be it enacted by the Council as follows:

 

Section 1. Section 21-139 of the administrative code of the city of New York, as added by local law number 20 for the year 2018, is amended to read as follows:

 § 21-139 Requirements for job centers and SNAP centers. a. Definitions. For purposes of this section, the following terms have the following meanings:

Additional wait time. The term “additional wait time” means the time between when a visitor has completed one appointment related to public assistance and is waiting to be called for another appointment in the same job center or SNAP center. Additional wait time begins at the end of one such appointment and ends when the visitor is called to begin another such appointment.

Appointment receipt. The term “appointment receipt” means a document given to all checked-in visitors at a job center who complete an appointment and that reflects the date of the visit, the reason for the visit, and the name and telephone number of the center that was visited.

Checked-in. The term “checked-in” means that a visitor has made initial contact with the department at a job center or SNAP center, either through a self-service kiosk or with a staff member responsible for keeping track of visitors, and has made such contact so that the department has a record, either written or electronic, of such visitor’s time of arrival at such job center or SNAP center and the reason for their visit.

Job center. The term “job center” means any location designated by the department as a job center where individuals can complete an application for cash assistance in person.

SNAP center. The term “SNAP center” means any location designated by the department as a SNAP center where individuals can complete an application for the supplemental nutrition assistance program in person.

Total time. The term “total time” means the amount of time a visitor spends at a job center or SNAP center. Total time begins at the start of the visitor’s check-in time and ends when a visitor leaves the job center or SNAP center.

Visitor. The term “visitor” means any individual who, by prior appointment or walk-in, enters a job center or SNAP center to apply for public assistance, to receive assistance for an open public assistance case, or to receive assistance for a closed public assistance case.

Wait time. The term “wait time” means the amount of time a visitor spends waiting to be called for assistance after such visitor has checked-in to a job center or SNAP center. Wait time begins at the start of the visitor’s checked-in time, and ends when a visitor is called to begin an appointment.

b.   The department shall issue an appointment receipt to all visitors who have checked-in at a job center and completed an appointment.

c.   The department shall make available, through an online portal, to each person applying for cash assistance or supplemental nutrition assistance program benefits: (i) such person’s scheduled appointments relating to cash assistance and eligibility for supplemental nutrition assistance program benefits; (ii) documents indexed to such person’s case within the past 60 days; and (iii) such person’s application and case status.

d. Not later than January 31, 2018, and within 45 days after the end of every month thereafter, the department shall post on its website a report of the average wait time, additional wait time, and total time during the preceding month for a visitor at each job center and SNAP center.

e. The department shall post a sign, in a form and manner as prescribed by the rules of the commissioner, in one or more visible locations inside every job center. Such sign shall include information regarding a visitor’s right to make a complaint and instructions on how to make a complaint by phone or online.

   f. The department shall provide a tracking number to any visitor who initiates a complaint relating to a visit to a job center. Such tracking number shall track the status of a complaint from initiation to disposition.

§ 2. This local law takes effect immediately.AM

LS #10303

6/26/19