macon county nc north carolina courthouse government
economic services dss macon county nc north carolina social services


Macon County Dept. of Social Services
R. Patrick Betancourt, Director
1832 Lakeside Drive
Franklin, NC 28734
Phone: (828) 349-2124
Fax: (828) 349-2401


department social services franklin highlands nantahala nc north carolina Macon County • Department of Social Services
Economic Services

Food and Nutrition Services is administered nationally by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and locally by the Department of Social Services to improve the nutrition levels of households. All applicants are screened for emergency benefits during the interview process. An emergency is determined by assessing the household's situation for the entire month the application was submitted. If the household is determined in need of emergency benefits they will receive their initial benefit amount within 7 days. If a household is determined ineligible for emergency benefits they will receive their benefits within 30 days of the date of application.

dss ebt card macon county nc north carolina department social servicesOnce a household has been determined eligible for this program, they will receive an EBT (Electronic Benefits Transfer) card through the mail. The card then needs to be activated by calling 1-888-622-7328 and issuing the EBT card a four digit pin number that the household member chooses. The household may then purchase food at any authorized grocery store. Once a purchase has been made the amount of the purchase is automatically deducted from their account and the remaining balance is shown on the bottom of their receipt. The monthly benefits are added to the account on the same day each month. Recipients who are handicapped or physically unable to shop for themselves can name someone they trust as an authorized representative. The representative will get an EBT card that has full access to the recipient's account and be able to shop for them.

Long Term Care (Nursing Home) Medicaid program will pay for medically necessary nursing home care for a Medicaid eligible individual who is either a patient in a nursing home or in an Intermediate Care facility for the Mentally Retarded. Medicaid is a program that pays medical bills for eligible adults who cannot afford health care. It also pays prescriptions for eligible adults without Medicare.

  1. Medical need for the patient to be in a nursing home bed must be approved in Raleigh.
  2. If an applicant/recipient, his spouse, or legal representative gives away or sells assets belonging to the applicant/recipient for less than current market value, he may not be eligible for payment of cost of care in the nursing home.
  3. There are limits on the amount and type of real and personal property a person may have. If the applicant has a spouse, it is possible for up to one-half of the assets to be protected for the spouse at home.
  4. The recipient must use his/her income to help pay for nursing home care. Each recipient keeps $30 per month for his personal needs; an additional amount may be set aside for the spouse at home.

Child Support Services can be provided to any North Carolina parent or custodian regardless of income level. Individuals receiving Work First Family Assistance and Medicaid are automatically referred for child support services. Persons receiving public assistance are required to cooperate with child support enforcement as a condition of their eligibility for assistance. Persons not receiving public assistance may apply for and receive child support services upon the payment of $25.00 application fee. In addition to custodial and non-custodial parents, relatives, court-appointed guardians, or others who are caring for a child can receive services. Basic services provided are location, establishment of paternity, establishment of legal child support order and collection of child support payments. To schedule an intake appointment, please call 828-349-2124. For more information please visit Issues concerning custody and visitation are separate issues and not part of child support services offered at DSS.

State and County Special Assistance provides financial assistance to those who are in a home for the aged and disabled, family care home, group home, or an area-operated mental health home. The individual must be at least 65 years of age, or disabled by Social Security standards, or receiving SSI (Supplemental Social Security).The individual's income must be used to help pay the cost of care; $66 is set aside for personal needs. The individuals in this category, who are potentially eligible, must apply for SSI if money payments and medical assistance is requested.

Health Coverage for Workers with Disabilities (HCWD) is a Medicaid program that covers blind or disabled workers age 16 through 64 with incomes equal to or less than 150% of the federal poverty level. This program provides an incentive for disabled persons to go to work or increase their hours of work while protecting their Medicaid eligibility.

Adult Medicaid (Aged, Blind and Disabled) eligibility is determined by the County Department of Social Services and the Social Security Administration for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients. It is jointly financed with federal, state and county funds. If you are over 65, blind or disabled, the income limit to receive Medicaid is equal to or less than 100% of the Federal Poverty Level. There is a limit on resources. When the income exceeds 100% of the Federal Poverty Level, the individual must “spend down” to the medically needy income limit before he is eligible for Medicaid. Individuals who have Medicare coverage may also be eligible to have their Medicare premiums paid by Medicaid if their income is between 100% and 135% of the poverty level (Qualified Medicare Beneficiaries Programs). There is also a limit on resources for these Qualified Medicare Beneficiaries Medicaid programs.

Family & Children Medicaid programs ensure that families with children who are low income and unable to pay for needed medical service can potentially obtain medical care at low cost or no cost to the families. Eligibility for all programs is:

  • Medicaid for Infants and Children covers children from birth to age 19 with no reserve limits.
  • Medicaid for Families with Dependent Children covers parent/caretaker relatives that are living with a child and providing care for a child under age 19 and for children between ages 19 through 21. This program of Medicaid has a reserve limit that must be met.
  • Medicaid for Pregnant Women coverage is limited to the term of pregnancy with a two months post partum period. A woman may apply before or after the birth and any one whom may have experienced a recent pregnancy loss may also be eligible. The income limit may not exceed 185% of poverty and reserve limits do not apply. If a woman receives Medicaid at the time of delivery, her child may be eligible to receive Medicaid until age 1.
  • Expanded Foster Care must be 18 – 20 years of age and been in Foster Care on the 18th birthday.
  • Breast & Cervical Cancer Medicaid provides coverage for women who have been screened at a designated site or your local health department and enrolled in the North Carolina Breast & Cervical Cancer Control Program and is otherwise ineligible for Medicaid and has no other means of health insurance.
  • Carolina Access is North Carolina’s Medicaid managed care program. It provides you with a primary physician who will coordinate your medical care.
  • North Carolina Health Choice for Children (NCHC) is a program for families whose children between the ages of 6 and 19 are over income for Medicaid and can not afford private insurance. The child can not be covered by any other insurance policy to be eligible. No reserve limit.

Child Care Subsidy provides financial assistance for child care to eligible families to help maintain fulltime employment. Payment depends on family income, number in household and hours of service for license day care facility.

Work First is a work-for-benefit program. Support services are offered to assist families with obtaining and maintaining employment. This includes job coaching, placement, training and skill building for families that are income eligible. We unite with our community partners to reach the best goal for each family we serve. Recipients must be US Citizens or Legal residents to receive assistance.

Crisis Intervention Program (CIP) provides assistance for heating and cooling for household that are in crisis. The crisis must be able to be alleviated at time of application. Households may receive assistance more than once or until the yearly cap is reached. This program will only pay past due amount on electrical service. Assistance includes electric, wood, fuel oil, kerosene, LP gas (heating) only; crisis is determined by life threatening conditions at the time of application. Other criteria include but are not limited to: income limits and one member of the household must be a US Citizen. This program will run as long as there are funds available.

Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) The Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) is a Federally-funded program that provides for a one-time vendor payment to help eligible households pay their heating bills. Priority in eligibility is given to disabled persons receiving services through the Division of Aging and Adult Services, or households in which all members are age 60 and older. Applications for those households will be taken December 1st through January 31st or until funds are exhausted. Applications will begin usually December 1st of each year.

Applications for all other households will be taken from February 1st through March 31st of each year or until funds are exhausted.

Helping Each Other Cope (Haywood Electric Customers) provides assistance for their customers. The household must be in a crisis and the crisis must be able to be alleviated at the time of application. This program will pay for any past due electric bills, wood, fuel oil, kerosene and LP gas for heating and/or cooking. These families must be within the income guidelines; one member of the household must be a citizen and have Haywood Electric Company as their energy provider. A household may receive this assistance more than one time a year until they reach their yearly cap.

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