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NYS Higher Education Services Corporation 2014-15 Budget Update Avoiding Audit Disallowances NYSFAAA 2014.

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Presentation on theme: "NYS Higher Education Services Corporation 2014-15 Budget Update Avoiding Audit Disallowances NYSFAAA 2014."— Presentation transcript:

1 NYS Higher Education Services Corporation 2014-15 Budget Update Avoiding Audit Disallowances NYSFAAA 2014

2 2014-15 NYS Budget Changes

3 2014-15 Budget Changes  Increase in maximum TAP award –Dependent student  Change in Award Schedule –A, D and E  Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Incentive Program (STEM)  NYS Young Farmers Loan Forgiveness Incentive Program

4 Increased Maximum TAP Award Increased maximum TAP award for undergraduate dependent students by $165 annually Must be:  Attending degree-granting institution or a registered not-for profit business school  Schedules A, D and E

5 Change in Award Schedule New Petition Status and change in award schedule for students who qualify as an orphan, foster child or ward of the court  Currently: TAP award calculated using independent schedules  Change: TAP award calculated using dependent schedules A, D and E for increased award amount

6 STEM Awards Students must:  Be in the top 10 percent of their high school graduating class  Be matriculated in an approved undergraduate program leading to a degree in Science, Technology, Engineering or Mathematics at a SUNY or CUNY college  Execute a Service Contract agreeing to reside and work in a STEM field in New York State for five years

7 STEM Awards  Equal the SUNY resident tuition rate or actual tuition, whichever is less  Reduced by the amount of any duplicative (tuition only) assistance  Paid directly to the student’s SUNY or CUNY college on behalf of the recipient

8 STEM Certification  Separate payment roster  TAP award will be included on the roster  Must report additional tuition only assistance

9 STEM Certification (cont.)  Use certification code = 1 (eligible) to certify students meeting all eligibility requirements  Use certification code =2 (TAP no Scholarship) for students who do not meet STEM program requirements but are eligible for a TAP award

10 New York State Young Farmers Forgiveness Incentive Program  Provides loan forgiveness awards to college graduates who agree to operate a farm in NYS for five years  Up to 10 annual awards to qualified applicants  Up to $10,000 per year, per applicant

11 Evaluating Student Eligibility and Avoiding Audit Disallowances

12 Evaluating Student Eligibility  HESC first  Schools confirm eligibility (certification) –Access to student –Access to records  Office of the State Comptroller (OSC) –Audits schools –Audit disallowances  Avoid audit disallowances –Know your students –Trust but verify - document student statuses –Maintain student records (7 years) –Maintain school records supporting program approval

13 Student Eligibility Criteria  HESC –Citizenship –New York State residency –Income eligibility –Financial independence –Not in default on a state or federal student loan  Schools –High School diploma –Approved program of study –Enrolled Study abroad Out of state study –Matriculated status –Full-time status –Good academic standing –Level of study - undergraduate only

14 Citizenship  Federal requirements  Title IV eligibility

15 NYS Residency  Who is Student residing in New York State permanently Student can evidence domicile/permanent abode Members of Armed Forces stationed in NYS and immediate family members Student financially dependent on parent(s) who are also legal residents of NYS Financially dependent student is considered resident of state where parents reside  Who isn’t Student merely living in New York State to attend college Student cannot evidence domicile / permanent abode Student financially dependent on parents who reside in another state

16 Residency - Points  Legal resident 12 months prior to term  Parents retired to Florida –If student claimed as dependent – student now Florida resident –Ineligible for TAP  Residency appeal –Log into HESCWeb and request a Residency Questionnaire –HESC will evaluate

17 Residency  Warning signs –Parents have a non-New York address –Student off-campus address not in New York –H.S. diploma not from New York school  Consult with HESC –Don’t certify if unsure –Log onto HESCWeb–Student Record Maintenance to request RFI or Residency Questionnaire be sent to student –Send any documents you have using Doc Trac  DocTrac –E-mail: –Fax: (518) 473-1414

18 Income Eligibility  Income determines award  What is income? –NYS Net Taxable Household Income –Pensions not included on tax return  HESC verifies income with NYS Department of Tax & Finance  Maximum income –Dependent or married with dependents - $80,000 –Independent, single with dependents - $80,000 –Independent, married, no dependents - $40,000 –Independent, single, no dependents - $10,000

19 Financial Independence – Basic Conditions  Does not and will not live with parents for more than six weeks during preceding, current and future tax year  Did not receive support from parents exceeding $750 during preceding, current and future tax year  Is not claimed as dependent on parent(s) tax return(s) for preceding or current tax year  Honorably discharged from US military service and not claimed by parents for preceding or current tax year

20 Financial Independence – (cont.)  35 years old as of June 30 of the academic year (June 30, 2014, for 2014-15)  22-35 years old as of June 30 and meet basic conditions  Married on or before December 31 preceding the academic year and meet basic conditions  Previously approved for financial independence and meet basic conditions  Under 22 years old –Meet basic conditions and –Meet special conditions

21 Financial Independence – Special Conditions  Under 22  Both parents are –Deceased; or –Totally and permanently disabled; or –Declared incompetent  Applicant receives public assistance  Applicant is ward of the court  Involuntary dissolution of family unit

22 High School Diploma  Diploma or certificate from high school within the United States  Equivalent exam acceptable to NYS Education Department (e.g. TASC – Test Assessing Secondary Completion  Passing score on Ability to Benefit Test (ATB)  Maintain documentation in student file

23 Matriculated  Applied for admission at school offering approved program  Enrolled in courses fulfilling degree requirement

24 Full-Time  12 credits or more per semester toward degree program  No repeated courses for better grade  Can retake failed course if Good Academic Standing requirements met

25 Good Academic Standing  Good academic standing (GAS) components –Pursuit of Program (POP) –Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)  POP + SAP = GAS  Evaluated each term at time of certification

26 Good Academic Standing – POP  Pursuit of Program – –A requirement that a student receive a passing or failing grade in a certain percentage of courses each term –Based on the number of TAP payments the student has received  POP Chart

27 Good Academic Standing – SAP  Satisfactory Academic Progress –Accumulate a specified number of credits –Achieve a specified cumulative grade point average each term –Based on the number of TAP payments students have received  SAP Chart –C average requirement after 4 th payment

28 Exceptions and Waivers  Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) –May be eligible for TAP for 3 credits or more (1 class)  Medical / health waiver –Serious illness or other adverse physical condition which requires restricting the student's program of study –Combine course work of multiple terms to meet full-time study requirement –Medical documentation  Document special conditions in student file

29 Waivers  One-time GAS waiver –One-time waiver –Extenuating circumstances –Based on school’s published criteria –Improperly granting waiver may result in audit disallowance  C average waiver –Death of relative –Student illness or injury –Extenuating circumstances  Consistency – follow published guidelines  Document all waivers

30 Certification Components  When? –HESC processes no earlier than 14 days after term start date –60 days from the roster date or 30 days from end of term, whichever is later  Other benefits  Enrollment status – “FT”  Academic waiver – GAS Waiver Only  5 year program?

31 OSC Audits  Office of the State Comptroller (OSC)  Draft Audit Report  School comment  Final Audit Report  HESC may enforce audit findings – payment of audit disallowances

32 Avoid Audit Disallowances – Document!  HS Diploma  Full-time Status  Satisfactory Academic Progress  Waivers –1 Time GAS waiver –C average waiver  Student Transcripts  Residency  Citizenship  Enrollment Records  Any information you possess that may affect a student’s TAP award

33 QUESTIONS? Contact:

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