(a) Program plan; guidelines; compliance (1) The Secretary shall permit any political subdivision, in any State, that applies and submits a plan to the Secretary in compliance with guidelines promulgated by the Secretary to operate a workfare program pursuant to which every member of a household participating in the supplemental nutrition assistance program who is not exempt by virtue of the provisions of subsection (b) of this section shall accept an offer from such subdivision to perform work on its behalf, or may seek an offer to perform work, in return for compensation consisting of the allotment to which the household is entitled under section 2017(a) of this title, with each hour of such work entitling that household to a portion of its allotment equal in value to 100 per centum of the higher of the applicable State minimum wage or the Federal minimum hourly rate under the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 [29 U.S.C. 201 et seq.]. (2)
(A) The Secretary shall promulgate guidelines pursuant to paragraph (1) which, to the maximum extent practicable, enable a political subdivision to design and operate a workfare program under this section which is compatible and consistent with similar workfare programs operated by the subdivision.
(B) A political subdivision may comply with the requirements of this section by operating any workfare program which the Secretary determines meets the provisions and protections provided under this section.
(b) Exempt household membersA household member shall be exempt from workfare requirements imposed under this section if such member is—
(1) exempt from section 2015(d)(1) of this title as the result of clause (B), (C), (D), (E), or (F) of section 2015(d)(2) of this title;
(2) at the option of the operating agency, subject to and currently actively and satisfactorily participating at least 20 hours a week in a work activity required under title IV of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 601 et seq.);
(3) mentally or physically unfit;
(4) under sixteen years of age;
(5) sixty years of age or older; or
(6) a parent or other caretaker of a child in a household in which another member is subject to the requirements of this section or is employed fulltime.
(d) Nature, conditions, and costs of workThe operating agency shall—
(1) not provide any work that has the effect of replacing or preventing the employment of an individual not participating in the workfare program;
(2) provide the same benefits and working conditions that are provided at the job site to employees performing comparable work for comparable hours; and
(3) reimburse participants for actual costs of transportation and other actual costs all of which are reasonably necessary and directly related to participation in the program but not to exceed $25 in the aggregate per month.
(g) Payment of administrative expenses
(1) The Secretary shall pay to each operating agency 50 per centum of all administrative expenses incurred by such agency in operating a workfare program, including reimbursements to participants for work-related expenses as described in subsection (d)(3) of this section.
(A) From 50 per centum of the funds saved from employment related to a workfare program operated under this section, the Secretary shall pay to each operating agency an amount not to exceed the administrative expenses described in paragraph (1) for which no reimbursement is provided under such paragraph.
(B) For purposes of subparagraph (A), the term “funds saved from employment related to a workfare program operated under this section” means an amount equal to three times the dollar value of the decrease in allotments issued to households, to the extent that such decrease results from wages received by members of such households for the first month of employment beginning after the date such members commence such employment if such employment commences—
(i) while such members are participating for the first time in a workfare program operated under this section; or
(ii) in the thirty-day period beginning on the date such first participation is terminated.
(3) The Secretary may suspend or cancel some or all of these payments, or may withdraw approval from a political subdivision to operate a workfare program, upon a finding that the subdivision has failed to comply with the workfare requirements.
(Pub. L. 88–525, § 20, as added Pub. L. 97–98, title XIII, § 1333, Dec. 22, 1981, 95 Stat. 1291; amended Pub. L. 97–253, title I, §§ 185–188, Sept. 8, 1982, 96 Stat. 786; Pub. L. 99–198, title XV, § 1517(d), Dec. 23, 1985, 99 Stat. 1577; Pub. L. 102–237, title IX, § 941(10), Dec. 13, 1991, 105 Stat. 1893; Pub. L. 104–193, title I, § 109(e), title VIII, § 815(b)(2), Aug. 22, 1996, 110 Stat. 2170, 2317; Pub. L. 110–234, title IV, § 4001(b), May 22, 2008, 122 Stat. 1092; Pub. L. 110–246, § 4(a), title IV, § 4001(b), June 18, 2008, 122 Stat. 1664, 1853.)