An Assessment of Service Delivery Plans Submitted to the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs for the Comprehensive Energy Assistance Program
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The paper begins by discussing issues related to poverty including the definition of poverty, the nature and causes of poverty, the effects of poverty, and the public perceptions about the poor. The discussion then focuses on recent changes to welfare legislation particularly those resulting from the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWOR A) of 1996. The paper then focuses on general issues related to program planning and then turns to a discussion of the Comprehensive Energy Assistance Program (CEAP), a program designed to address the issue of poverty and administered by a state agency, the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (TDHCA). The conceptual framework for the research is developed from the requirements of the Service Delivery Plan (SDP) for CEAP, issued by TDHCA. Service delivery plans submitted for Fiscal Year 1999 and 2000 are analyzed to see if they conform to the requirements promulgated by the department. The methodology and results of the research are described in the latter half' of the paper. Results show that the majority of SDPs submitted to TDHCA for CEAP do not have all the required elements. Recommendations are, therefore, developed in response to the results.