Today, the IRS announced the availability of application packages for the 2015 Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE)  Program. The IRS has authority to enter into cooperative agreements with private or public non-profit agencies or organizations to establish a network of trained volunteers to provide free tax information and return preparation assistance to elderly individuals. Elderly individuals are defined as individuals age 60 and over at the close of their taxable year. Because applications are being solicited before the FY 2015 budget has been approved, cooperative agreements will be entered into subject to the appropriation of funds. For more information, see www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-03-14/pdf/2014-05563.pdf.

 

The IRS has also announced the availability of the application package for the 2015 Community Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Matching Grant Program. The IRS Stakeholder Partnerships, Education and Communication (SPEC) Organization has a long-term partnership with DOL/ETA to promote the use of the Earned Income Tax Credit, financial literacy, and asset development of people with disabilities. Disability Program Navigators have facilitated this initiative at the local levels by encouraging the One-Stop Career Centers to become VITA sites. For more information, see www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-03-14/pdf/2014-05571.pdf.

A SCSEP project administrator has asked this question:

 Do any SCSEP programs have publications or guides on finding employment that are specifically targeted to older workers?

Does your organization publish guides or tips on older worker employment? Do you know of organizations that do? Please post tips and links in the comments!

On March 28, the Department released TEGL 17-13, Exemption of SCSEP Wages from Income Eligibility Determinations for Federal Housing Programs and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). You can access this TEGL by visiting http://wdr.doleta.gov/directives/corr_doc.cfm?DOCN=3985.  

 

The guidance in TEGL 17-13 updates and supersedes the previous guidance on wage exemption in TEGL 11-06. SCSEP grantees should update their handbooks and other documents to reflect  this new guidance.

The SCSEP Data Validation Handbook is now available.

The following data elements are being validated for the first time this year:
  • P40c, Date of last IEP
  •  A20.c, Types of training received OJE
  • E6b, Date of termination letter
  • U.8, Did employer provide an OJE training site for this participant?

The source documentation requirements for these elements were included in the versions of the DV Handbook released in February and March of 2014.

This revision of the DV Handbook provides clarification on the process with respect to working with sub-grantees, the rules for electronic documentation, and the source documentation requirements for the following data elements:
  • P14, Total includable family income (12-month or 6-month annualized)
  • P26 Disability
  • P45, Recert: Total includable family income (12-month or 6 month annualized)
  • U29d and U29f, Earnings for second and third quarters after exit

As always, you have six months from the date on which the sample was made available to complete the validation process, so this year’s deadline is June 1, 2015.

On Monday, April 14 from 2-3pm ET, we will hold an online chat with Associates for Training and Development on using on-the-job experience (OJE). A4TD staff will be on hand to discuss how they use OJE - how they market to employers, how they select participants to participate, and the technical details of their OJE contracts - and the employment outcomes that they have experienced as a result. If you want to use OJE in your program but are unsure how to start, this is a great chance to ask questions of a grantee who is already using it.

Before the chat, you can review A4TD’s overview of their use of OJE and some of the success stories that have come out of it. You may also want to revisit our webinar On-the-Job Experience: Your Secret Weapon for Making Placements and our one page tip sheet on OJE.

 To participate in the chat, visit the Older Worker Community of Practice at olderworkers.workforce3one.org anytime between 2-3pm ET on April 14. Then click the “Chat” button in the upper right hand corner. You will need a Workforce3One account to participate. If you can't make the chat but are still interested in learning more about OJE, a transcript of the chat will be posted on the Community of Practice after the event.

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