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FLORENCE E. HOUTZ v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (05/03/79)

decided: May 3, 1979.

FLORENCE E. HOUTZ, PETITIONER
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WELFARE, RESPONDENT



Appeals from the Orders of the Department of Public Welfare, dated October 13, 1977, and July 13, 1978, in case of Appeal of Florence E. Houtz.

COUNSEL

Florence E. Houtz, petitioner, for herself.

Edward P. Carey, Assistant Attorney General, for respondent.

Judges Crumlish, Jr., Blatt and Craig, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Crumlish, Jr.

Author: Crumlish

[ 42 Pa. Commw. Page 407]

Florence E. Houtz (Petitioner) appeals two decisions of the Department of Public Welfare (DPW)

[ 42 Pa. Commw. Page 408]

    terminating general assistance payments. Appeals have been consolidated for argument. We affirm.

Houtz's first appeal revolves around the following facts:

Houtz received monthly assistance payments from the Philadelphia County Board of Assistance (CBA) of $164.00. In 1977 CBA terminated her assistance because she failed to comply with Section 432.5(c)*fn1 of the Public Welfare Code (Code) which places a $250.00 limit on personal property holdings of a single recipient. She was given notice of CBA's decision and three weeks in which to decrease her cash reserve (which was in excess of $450) and to verify the expenditures. This she refused to do. DPW held a hearing and affirmed CBA's termination of payments. Benefits continued pending this appeal.

On appeal Houtz argues:

1. That by limiting personal property holdings to $250, Section 432.5(c) prohibits DPW from aiding "needy" persons and promoting "self-dependency" as the legislature intended in Section 401*fn2 of the Code.

2. That cash reserves in excess of the $250 limit of Section 432.5(c) are exempted by Section 432.5(c)(3)*fn3 of the Code when for the purpose of purchasing materials or ...


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