DAL 16-26: SSI COLA Adjustment

February 1, 2017

DAL: DAL 16-26
Subject: SSI COLA Adjustment

Dear Adult Care Facility Operator/Administrator:

The purpose of this letter is to inform Operators/Administrators of adult homes and enriched housing programs of the impending increases in 2017 Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Safety Net benefits provided to residents of such facilities as a result of cost of living increases for 2016.

Chapter 54 of the Laws of 2016 authorized a pass through of the January 1, 2017 cost of living increases to SSI recipients. The January 1, 2017 increases will result in increases of $2 per month for individuals and $4 per month for couples. The law also requires that SSI residents receive a $1.00 increase in their Personal Needs Allowance, effective January 1, 2017.

Benefit changes will be effective January 1, 2017 and paid monthly as described below:

Status SSI Income Only SSI Income Plus Social
Security or other unearned
Income not counted by
Social Security
Individuals $1,429.00 $1,449.00
Couples $2,858.00 $2,878.00

Adult Home and Enriched Housing Program residents who receive SSI benefits will also be entitled to receive $194.00 per month as a Personal Needs Allowance in 2017. Residents who receive both SSI and Social Security Income, Railroad Retirement, Veterans' Benefits or other income are entitled to receive a 2017 Personal Needs Allowance of at least $214 per month.

Residents who receive Safety Net payments from local Departments of Social Services also will receive the $1,429 per month as outlined above, which includes $1,235 for cost of care and $194 for the resident's Personal Needs Allowance.

Enclosed is a notice for residents who receive SSI. The notice describes the changes in SSI which go into effect on January 1, 2017. The notice is to be conspicuously posted where it is accessible to residents. Recommended places for posting are residence bulletin boards, next to the activities schedule and/or next to the daily menu. You should also make copies for residents who would like to have a copy of the notice. We will not be mailing individual copies to the residents receiving SSI in your facility.

If you intend to increase the rate you charge residents, you are required to give residents a written notice specifying the new rate at least 30 days prior to the date of the increase. In addition, Assisted Living Residences (ALRs) must provide 45 days' notice before increasing the rate for residents who receive SSI. The operator may increase the rate with less than the 30-day notice (45 days for ALRs) if the resident voluntarily agrees to such a rate increase in writing. In either case, you are required to amend the admission/residency agreement. In addition, you are required to offer eligible residents, in writing, an opportunity to place Personal Needs Allowance funds in a facility maintained account, if they do not already have a facility maintained account for Personal Needs Allowance.

The SSI and Safety Net Assistance increases are effective January 1, 2017 and will be included in regular SSI and Safety Net Assistance checks beginning with the January SSI check. SSI recipients with questions about their SSI benefits should contact the Social Security Administration by calling the national toll-free hotline at 1 (800) 772-1213 or by contacting their local Social Security Office in person or by phone.

Please be advised that this letter and attachments will be available on the Department's website at: http://www.health.ny.gov/facilities/adult_care/dear_administrator_letters/

If you have any questions about the posting of this notice, please contact the Department's Regional Office representative in your area as listed on the enclosed notice.


Valerie A. Deetz, Director
Division of Adult Care Facilities and
Assisted Living Surveillance