Back to square one? DRT meets with AG to go over RISE eligibility rules

Department of Revenue and Taxation (PNC file photo)

It may take some more time before the RISE payment program application is opened up to the public.

Department of Revenue and Taxation director Dafne Shimizu said they are still working on the implementation of the RISE program and in fact just completed a meeting with the Office of the Attorney General to go over the program’s eligibility rules.

“We’ve been having some challenges with just kind of parsing through the language. Last week, we had a brief call with the AG’s office with regards to that. And yesterday, we spent like two hours with the AG’s office, just making sure that we clarify certain requirements or certain eligibility questions that we had,” Shimizu said in an interview with NewsTalk K57’s Patti Arroyo.

She added: “The eligibility has been a little bit challenging for us to confirm because of the issue of some of the inconsistencies in the language between the law and the rules and regs.”

Shimizu did say that as of Thursday, they have gone through the majority of those eligibility questions and they feel confident that they now have a good handle on the eligibility question.

And so we’re hoping, of course, through today, and likely through the weekend, we’ll be working on the final eligibility so that people can have final guidance on that. And I know another of the questions that people have, with regards to the All RISE Act now is the, I guess, the question of the mayor’s verification and how that will all work,” Shimizu said.

Acting Governor Josh Tenorio on Sunday directed DRT to accept applications without mayors’ verifications upon the commencement of the All RISE application process in response to complaints about the long lines at mayor’s offices.

All other requirements will continue and DRT will verify the residency of applicants with mayors after the applications are submitted.

“I’ve also met with our mayors as well about the huge demand for these mayor’s verifications and to make sure that we address the issue of the mayor’s verifications and determine how on the back end, we may be able to receive the actual mayor’s verification,” Shimizu said.

For those who have already gotten their mayor’s verification, Shimizu said they should also make sure that they work on the other requirements as well.

“I know there are people who already have their mayor’s verification, but that mayor’s verification isn’t the only document that’s required. There are still other documents that will be required, for example, those people who were employed in 2020 will be required to provide some form of certification of employment, which could come in the form of a verification of employment, or a W-2, or some other document, which, again, will be laid out in the eligibility portion of our final guidance, which we’re working on,” Shimizu said.