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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

256J.26 PERSONS INELIGIBLE; VENDOR PAYMENTS.
    Subdivision 1. Person convicted of drug offenses. (a) Applicants or participants who have
been convicted of a drug offense committed after July 1, 1997, may, if otherwise eligible, receive
MFIP benefits subject to the following conditions:
(1) Benefits for the entire assistance unit must be paid in vendor form for shelter and utilities
during any time the applicant is part of the assistance unit.
(2) The convicted applicant or participant shall be subject to random drug testing as a
condition of continued eligibility and following any positive test for an illegal controlled
substance is subject to the following sanctions:
(i) for failing a drug test the first time, the residual amount of the participant's grant after
making vendor payments for shelter and utility costs, if any, must be reduced by an amount
equal to 30 percent of the MFIP standard of need for an assistance unit of the same size. When a
sanction under this subdivision is in effect, the job counselor must attempt to meet with the person
face-to-face. During the face-to-face meeting, the job counselor must explain the consequences
of a subsequent drug test failure and inform the participant of the right to appeal the sanction
under section 256J.40. If a face-to-face meeting is not possible, the county agency must send the
participant a notice of adverse action as provided in section 256J.31, subdivisions 4 and 5, and
must include the information required in the face-to-face meeting; or
(ii) for failing a drug test two times, the participant is permanently disqualified from
receiving MFIP assistance, both the cash and food portions. The assistance unit's MFIP grant must
be reduced by the amount which would have otherwise been made available to the disqualified
participant. Disqualification under this item does not make a participant ineligible for food stamps
or food support. Before a disqualification under this provision is imposed, the job counselor
must attempt to meet with the participant face-to-face. During the face-to-face meeting, the job
counselor must identify other resources that may be available to the participant to meet the needs
of the family and inform the participant of the right to appeal the disqualification under section
256J.40. If a face-to-face meeting is not possible, the county agency must send the participant a
notice of adverse action as provided in section 256J.31, subdivisions 4 and 5, and must include
the information required in the face-to-face meeting.
(3) A participant who fails a drug test the first time and is under a sanction due to other MFIP
program requirements is considered to have more than one occurrence of noncompliance and
is subject to the applicable level of sanction as specified under section 256J.46, subdivision 1,
paragraph (d).
(b) Applicants requesting only food stamps or food support or participants receiving only
food stamps or food support, who have been convicted of a drug offense that occurred after July
1, 1997, may, if otherwise eligible, receive food stamps or food support if the convicted applicant
or participant is subject to random drug testing as a condition of continued eligibility. Following a
positive test for an illegal controlled substance, the applicant is subject to the following sanctions:
(1) for failing a drug test the first time, food stamps or food support shall be reduced by an
amount equal to 30 percent of the applicable food stamp or food support allotment. When a
sanction under this clause is in effect, a job counselor must attempt to meet with the person
face-to-face. During the face-to-face meeting, a job counselor must explain the consequences
of a subsequent drug test failure and inform the participant of the right to appeal the sanction
under section 256J.40. If a face-to-face meeting is not possible, a county agency must send the
participant a notice of adverse action as provided in section 256J.31, subdivisions 4 and 5, and
must include the information required in the face-to-face meeting; and
(2) for failing a drug test two times, the participant is permanently disqualified from
receiving food stamps or food support. Before a disqualification under this provision is imposed,
a job counselor must attempt to meet with the participant face-to-face. During the face-to-face
meeting, the job counselor must identify other resources that may be available to the participant to
meet the needs of the family and inform the participant of the right to appeal the disqualification
under section 256J.40. If a face-to-face meeting is not possible, a county agency must send the
participant a notice of adverse action as provided in section 256J.31, subdivisions 4 and 5, and
must include the information required in the face-to-face meeting.
(c) For the purposes of this subdivision, "drug offense" means an offense that occurred after
July 1, 1997, of sections 152.021 to 152.025, 152.0261, 152.0262, or 152.096. Drug offense also
means a conviction in another jurisdiction of the possession, use, or distribution of a controlled
substance, or conspiracy to commit any of these offenses, if the offense occurred after July 1,
1997, and the conviction is a felony offense in that jurisdiction, or in the case of New Jersey,
a high misdemeanor.
    Subd. 2. Parole violators. An individual violating a condition of probation or parole
or supervised release imposed under federal law or the law of any state is disqualified from
receiving MFIP.
    Subd. 3. Fleeing felons. An individual who is fleeing to avoid prosecution, or custody, or
confinement after conviction for a crime that is a felony under the laws of the jurisdiction from
which the individual flees, or in the case of New Jersey, is a high misdemeanor, is disqualified
from receiving MFIP.
    Subd. 4. Disqualification for fraudulently misrepresenting residency. An individual who
is convicted in federal or state court of having made a fraudulent statement or representation with
respect to the place of residence of the individual in order to receive assistance simultaneously
from two or more states is disqualified from receiving MFIP for ten years beginning on the
date of the conviction.
History: 1997 c 85 art 1 s 16; 1997 c 203 art 12 s 10; 1997 c 245 art 4 s 1; 1998 c 407
art 6 s 52-55; 1999 c 159 s 82-85; 1999 c 245 art 6 s 29; 1Sp2001 c 9 art 10 s 17; 2002 c 379
art 1 s 113; 1Sp2003 c 14 art 1 s 106; 2005 c 136 art 7 s 21