N.J.S.A 44:10-82 Eligibility of noncitizen for program.

44:10-82 Eligibility of noncitizen for program.

4. a. A noncitizen shall be eligible for participation in the program if that person was: lawfully admitted into the United States prior to August 22, 1996, remains lawfully present in the United States, is ineligible for the federal food stamp program, and is one of the following:

(1) under 18 years of age;

(2) 65 years of age or over;

(3) receiving benefits under the supplemental security income program established pursuant to the federal Social Security Act, Pub.L.92-603 (42 U.S.C. S.1381 et seq.), or determined to be an essential person under the supplemental security income program;

(4) mentally or physically incapacitated, as defined by regulation of the commissioner, including being blind;

(5) considered unemployable under the Work First New Jersey program established pursuant to Phamplet Law 1997, Chapter 38 (44:10-55. Short title et seq.); or

(6) a natural or adoptive parent, stepparent or legal guardian residing with that person’s dependent child under the age of 18. Unless employed, this person: shall be required to participate in a work activity as defined in section 3 of Phamplet Law 1997, Chapter 38 (44:10-57. Definitions relative to Work First New Jersey program), which may include a program that is designed to assist the person in securing employment or preparing for employment, in accordance with the provisions of subsection f. of section 8 of Phamplet Law 1997, Chapter 38 (44:10-62 Adult recipient to seek employment.); and shall be eligible for child care and other services under the Work First New Jersey program related to the work activity, except that:

(a) the person shall not be required to engage in a work activity if child care is unavailable for the person’s dependent child in accordance with the provisions of subsection d. of section 8 of Phamplet Law 1997, Chapter 38 (44:10-62 Adult recipient to seek employment.); and

(b) the person may be temporarily deferred from the work activity requirement in accordance with the provisions of subsection e. of section 8 of Phamplet Law 1997, Chapter 38 (44:10-62 Adult recipient to seek employment.).

b. To be eligible for the program, a noncitizen shall also meet one of the following criteria:

(1) lawfully admitted for permanent residence as an immigrant;

(2) entered the United States prior to January 1, 1972, or some later date as required by law, and continuously maintained residency in the United States since then, and is not ineligible for citizenship but is considered to be lawfully admitted for permanent residence as a result of an exercise of discretion by the United States Attorney General;

(3) was qualified by the federal Immigration and Naturalization Service for conditional entry into the United States after March 31, 1980 because of persecution or fear of persecution on account of race, religion, or political opinion;

(4) was qualified by the federal Immigration and Naturalization Service for conditional entry into the United States prior to April 1, 1980;

(5) was granted asylum through an exercise of discretion by the United States Attorney General;

(6) is lawfully present in the United States as a result of an exercise of discretion by the United States Attorney General for emergent reasons or reasons deemed strictly in the public interest, or as a result of a grant of parole by the United States Attorney General;

(7) the United States Attorney General has withheld deportation of the noncitizen because of the judgment of the United States Attorney General that the noncitizen would otherwise be subject to persecution on account of race, religion, or political opinion;

(8) has been determined as aged, blind or disabled in accordance with the supplemental security income program established pursuant to the federal Social Security Act, Pub.L.92-603 (42 U.S.C. S.1381 et seq.), and is considered by the federal Immigration and Naturalization Service to be lawfully admitted for temporary residence;

(9) was granted lawful temporary resident status at least five years prior to applying for the program and subsequently gained lawful permanent resident status; or

(10) is, as of June 1, 1987 or thereafter, a special agricultural worker as defined by federal law and lawfully admitted for temporary residence.

C. A noncitizen who is certified as eligible for the program by the department, or the agency designated by the department, shall be required to apply for United States citizenship within 60 days of the date that the noncitizen is certified as eligible for the program or within 60 days of the date the noncitizen is eligible to apply for citizenship, whichever is later, except that a noncitizen shall be exempt from the citizenship application requirement if that person is:

(1) unable to either apply for or obtain citizenship due to a medical or physical condition as defined by regulation of the commissioner; or

(2) a child under 18 years of age.

d. An eligible noncitizen may continue to receive program benefits until that person meets the minimum residency requirements provided in federal law to apply for citizenship.

e. A person who is required to apply for citizenship to retain eligibility for the program, but who fails to supply adequate proof to the department, or the agency designated by the department, that he has made timely application for citizenship, shall have his eligibility for the program terminated.

f. A person who applies for citizenship, but who subsequently is determined by the federal Immigration and Naturalization Service to be ineligible for citizenship, except for a noncitizen as described in paragraph (1) of subsection C. of this section, shall have his eligibility for the program terminated at the end of the month in which the 60-day period as provided in subsection C. of this section expireS.

L.1998,C. 32,S.4.

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