Sec. 3. Title 43, Chapter 6, Article 1, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new Section 43-616.
43-616 . Contribution to neighbors helping neighbors fund
A. The department shall provide a space on the first page of the individual income tax return form in which the taxpayer may designate an amount of the taxpayer's refund as a voluntary contribution to the neighbors helping neighbors fund established pursuant to section 46-741.
B. After subtracting any set-off for debts pursuant to section 42-133, the department shall subtract the designated amount from the refund due the taxpayer and pay it to the state treasurer for deposit in the fund. The department shall determine the initial administrative cost of this section and report the amount to the state treasurer who shall transfer that amount from the fund to the state general fund.
C. The taxpayer may also donate any amount to the fund, in lieu of or in addition to the designated portion of his income tax refund, by an appropriate indication on his return and by including that amount with his return.
46-741 . Neighbors helping neighbors fund; definition
A. A neighbors helping neighbors fund is established in the state treasury to provide eligible recipients with assistance in paying utility bills, conserving energy and weatherization. The department shall administer the fund. The department shall coordinate this assistance with its low income energy assistance program and its weatherization assistance program.
B. Eligible recipients are individuals who have household income at or below one hundred twenty-five per cent of the poverty level or individuals who are sixty years of age or older or handicapped and who have a household income at or below one hundred fifty per cent of the poverty level. For the purposes of this subsection, the poverty level is as determined by the United States office of management and budget and reported in the federal register.
C. Beginning July 1, 1993, the director shall provide the use of neighbors helping neighbors fund monies to designated community action or other agencies currently providing energy assistance services to individuals who are eligible under subsection B to receive assistance under this article.
D. Monies in the neighbors helping neighbors fund do not revert to the state general fund.
E. An amount of not more than two per cent of the neighbors helping neighbors fund monies may be used by the department and an amount of not more than eight per cent of the fund monies may be used by the agencies to reimburse them for their administrative costs in providing services under this article.
F. On or before October 15 of each year, the director shall submit a report to the appropriate legislative committees that includes summaries of total monies collected and distributed under this article and such other information as the legislative committees request.
G. For purposes of this section, "Utility" means a person who transmits, sells, delivers or furnishes electricity, water, gas or telecommunication services for public use.