Access device means any card, plate, code, account number, or other means of access that can be used alone, or in conjunction with another access device, to obtain payments, allotments, benefits, money, goods, or other things of value, or that can be used to initiate a transfer of funds under the Food Stamp Act of 1977, as amended.
Active case means a household which was certified prior to, or during, the sample month and issued food stamp benefits for the sample month.
Active case error rate means an estimate of the proportion of cases with an error in the determination of eligibility or basis of issuance. This estimate will be expressed as a percentage of the completed active quality control reviews excluding all results from cases processed by SSA personnel or participating in a demonstration project identified by FNS as having certification rules that are significantly different from standard requirements.
Adequate notice in a periodic reporting system such as monthly reporting or quarterly reporting means a written notice that includes a statement of the action the agency has taken or intends to take; the reason for the intended action; the household's right to request a fair hearing; the name of the person to contact for additional information; the availability of continued benefits; and the liability of the household for any overissuances received while awaiting a fair hearing if the hearing official's decision is adverse to the household. Depending on the timing of a State's system and the timeliness of report submission by participating households, such notice may be received prior to agency action, at the time reduced benefits are received, or, if benefits are terminated, at the time benefits would have been received if they had not been terminated. In all cases, however, participants will be allowed ten days from the mailing date of the notice to contest the agency action and to have benefits restored to their previous level. If the 10-day period ends on a weekend or a holiday and a request is received the day after the weekend or holiday, the State agency shall consider the request to be timely.
Alien Status Verification Index (ASVI) means the automated database maintained by the Immigration and Naturalization Service which may be accessed by State agencies to verify immigration status.
Allotment means the total value of coupons a household is authorized to receive during each month or other time period.
Application form means: (1) The application form designed or approved by FNS, which is completed by a household member or authorized representative; or
For households consisting solely of public assistance or general assistance recipients, it may also mean the application form used to apply for public assistance or general assistance, including attachments approved by FNS, which is completed by a household member or authorized represen- tative.
Assessment an in-depth evaluation of employability skills coupled with counseling on how and where to search for employment. If combined with work experience, employment search or training, an assessment of this nature could constitute part of an approvable employment and training component.
Authorization document means an intermediary document issued by the State agency and used in an issuance system to authorize a specific benefit amount for a household.
Authorization to participate card (ATP) means a document which is issued by the State agency to a certified household to show the allotment the household is authorized to receive on presentation of such document.
Beginning month(s) in a Monthly Reporting and Retrospective Budgeting system means either the first month for which the household is certified for food stamps (where the State agency has adopted a one month accounting system) or the first month for which the household is certified for food stamps and the month thereafter (where the State agency has adopted a two month accounting system). Except for beginning months in sequence as described in the preceding sentences, a beginning month cannot be any month which immediately follows a month in which a household is certified. The month following the month of termination resulting from a one-month temporary change in household circumstances shall not be considered a beginning month.
Budget month in a Monthly Reporting and Retrospective Budgeting system means the fiscal or calendar month from which the State agency uses income and other circumstances of the household to calculate the household's food stamp allotment to be provided for the corresponding issuance month.
Bulk storage point means an office of the State agency or any person, partnership, corporation, organization, political subdivision, or other entity with which a State agency has contracted for, or to which it has assigned responsibility for, the security and storage of food coupons.
Communal dining facility means a public or nonprofit private establishment, approved by FNS, which prepares and serves meals for elderly persons, or for supplemental security income (SSI) recipients, and their spouses, a public or private nonprofit establishment (eating or otherwise) that feeds elderly persons or SSI recipients, and their spouses, and federally subsidized housing for the elderly at which meals are prepared for and served to the residents. It also includes private establishments that contract with an appropriate State or local agency to offer meals at concessional prices to elderly persons or SSI recipients, and their spouses.
Coupon means any coupon, stamp, type of certificate, authorization card, cash or check issued in lieu of a coupon, or access device, including an electronic benefit transfer card or personal identification number issued pursuant to the provisions of the Food Stamp Act of 1977, as amended, for the purchase of eligible food.
Coupon issuer means any office of the State agency or any person, partnership, corporation, organization, political subdivision, or other entity with which a State agency has contracted for, or to which it has assigned responsibility for, the issuance of coupons to households.
Deficiency means any aspect of a State's program operations determined to be out of compliance with the Food Stamp Act, FNS Regulations, or program requirements as contained in the State agency's manual, the State agency's approved Plan of Operation or other State agency plans.
Department means the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Direct access system means an issuance system in which benefits are issued directly to the household, without the use of an intermediary document, based on the issuance agent's direct access to information in the household's individual record on the master issuance file, which may be a card document or an on-line computer system.
Drug addiction or alcoholic treatment and rehabilitation program means any drug addiction or alcoholic treatment and rehabilitation program conducted by a private, nonprofit organization or institution, or a publicly operated community mental health center, under part B of title XIX of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 300x et seq.). Under part B of title XIX of the Public Health Service Act is defined as meeting the criteria which would make it eligible to receive funds, even if it does not actually receive funding under part B of title XIX.
Elderly or disabled member means a member of a household who: (1) Is 60 years of age or older;
Receives supplemental security income benefits under title XVI of the Social Security Act or disability or blindness payments under titles I, II, X, XIV, or XVI of the Social Security Act;
Receives federally or State-administered supplemental benefits under section 1616(a) of the Social Security Act provided that the eligibility to receive the benefits is based upon the disability or blindness criteria used under title XVI of the Social Security Act;
Receives federally or State-administered supplemental benefits under section 212(a) of Pub. L. 93-66;
Receives disability retirement benefits from a governmental agency because of a disability considered permanent under section 221(i) of the Social Security Act.
Is a veteran with a service-connected or non-service-connected disability rated by the Veteran's Administration (VA) as total or paid as total by the VA under title 38 of the United States Code;
Is a veteran considered by the VA to be in need of regular aid and attendance or permanently housebound under title 38 of the United States Code;
Is a surviving spouse of a veteran and considered by the VA to be in need of regular aid and attendance or permanently housebound or a surviving child of a veteran and considered by the VA to be permanently incapable of self-support under title 38 of the United States Code;
Is a surviving spouse or surviving child of a veteran and considered by the VA to be entitled to compensation for a service-connected death or pension benefits for a nonservice-connected death under title 38 of the United States Code and has a disability considered permanent under section 221(i) of the Social Security Act. “Entitled” as used in this definition refers to those veterans' surviving spouses and surviving children who are receiving the compensation or pension benefits stated or have been approved for such payments, but are not yet receiving them; or
Receives an annuity payment under: section 2(a)(1)(iv) of the Railroad Retirement Act of 1974 and is determined to be eligible to receive Medicare by the Railroad Retirement Board; or section 2(a)(1)(v) of the Railroad Retirement Act of 1974 and is determined to be disabled based upon the criteria used under title XVI of the Social Security Act.
Is a recipient of interim assistance benefits pending the receipt of Supplemented Security Income, a recipient of disability related medical assistance under title XIX of the Social Security Act, or a recipient of disability-based State general assistance benefits provided that the eligibility to receive any of these benefits is based upon disability or blindness criteria established by the State agency which are at least as stringent as those used under title XVI of the Social Security Act (as set forth at 20 CFR part 416, subpart I, Determining Disability and Blindness as defined in Title XVI).
Eligible foods means: (1) Any food or food product intended for human consumption except alcoholic beverages, tobacco, and hot foods and hot food products prepared for immediate consumption;
Seeds and plants to grow foods for the personal consumption of eligible households;
Meals prepared and delivered by an authorized meal delivery service to households eligible to use coupons to purchase delivered meals; or meals served by an authorized communal dining facility for the elderly, for SSI households or both, to households eligible to use coupons for communal dining;
Meals prepared and served by a drug addict or alcoholic treatment and rehabilitation center to narcotic addicts or alcoholics and their children who live with them;
Meals prepared and served by a group living arrangement facility to residents who are blind or disabled as defined in paragraphs (2) through (11) of the definition of “Elderly or disabled member” contained in this section;
Meals prepared by and served by a shelter for battered women and children to its eligible residents;
In the case of certain eligible households living in areas of Alaska where access to food stores is extremely difficult and the households rely on hunting and fishing for subsistence, equipment for the purpose of procuring food for eligible households, including nets, lines, hooks, fishing rods, harpoons, knives, and other equipment necessary for subsistence hunting and fishing but not equipment for the purpose of transportation, clothing or shelter, nor firearms, ammunition or other explosives;
In the case of homeless food stamp households, meals prepared for and served by an authorized public or private nonprofit establishment (e.g. soup kitchen, temporary shelter), approved by an appropriate State or local agency, that feeds homeless persons; and
In the case of homeless food stamp households, meals prepared by a restaurant which contracts with an appropriate State agency to serve meals to homeless persons at concessional (low or reduced) prices.
Employment and training (E&T) component a work experience, work training or job search program, as described in section 6(d)(4)(B)(iv) of the Food Stamp Act of 1977 (7 U.S.C. 2014(2)(4)(B)) designed to help food stamp recipients move promptly into unsubsidized employment.
Employment and training (E&T) mandatory participant a Food Stamp Program applicant or participant who is required to work register under 7 U.S.C. 2014(d)(1) or (2) and who the State determines should not be exempted from participation in an employment and training program.
Employment and training (E&T) program a program operated by each State agency consisting of one or more work, training, education or job search components.
Error for active cases results when a determination is made by a quality control reviewer that a household which received food stamp benefits during the sample month is ineligible or received an incorrect allotment. Thus, errors in active cases involve dollar loss to either the participant or the government. For negative cases, an “error” means that the reviewer determines that the decision to deny, suspend, or terminate a household was incorrect.
Exempted for purposes of § 273.7 excluding paragraphs (a) and (b)—this term refers to a work registered person or persons excused by the State, under the conditions in § 273.7(e) from participation in an employment and training program.
Exercises governmental jurisdiction means the active exercise of the legislative, executive or judicial powers of government by an Indian tribal organization.
Federal fiscal year means a period of 12 calendar months beginning with each October 1 and ending with September 30 of the following calendar year.
Firm's practice means the usual manner in which personnel of a firm or store accept food coupons as shown by the actions of the personnel at the time of the investigation.
FNS means the Food and Nutrition Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Food Stamp Act means the Food Stamp Act of 1977 (Pub. L. 95-113), including any subsequent amendments thereto.
General assistance (GA) means cash or another form of assistance, excluding in-kind assistance, financed by State or local funds as part of a program which provides assistance to cover living expenses or other basic needs intended to promote the health or well-being of recipients.
Group living arrangement means a public or private nonprofit residential setting that serves no more than sixteen residents that is certified by the appropriate agency or agencies of the State under regulations issued under section 1616(e) of the Social Security Act or under standards determined by the Secretary to be comparable to standards implemented by appropriate State agencies under section 1616(e) of the Social Security Act. To be eligible for food stamp benefits, a resident of such a group living arrangement must be blind or disabled as defined in paragraphs (2) through (11) of the definition of “Elderly or disabled member” contained in this section.
Homeless individual means an individual who lacks a fixed and regular nighttime residence or an individual whose primary nighttime residence is: (1) A supervised shelter designed to provide temporary accommodations (such as a welfare hotel or congregate shelter);
A halfway house or similar institution that provides temporary residence for individuals intended to be institutionalized;
A temporary accommodation for not more than 90 days in the residence of another individual; or
A place not designed for, or ordinarily used, as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings (a hallway, a bus station, a lobby or similar places).
Homeless meal provider means:
A public or private nonprofit establishment (e.g., soup kitchens, temporary shelters) that feeds homeless persons; or
A restaurant which contracts with an appropriate State agency to offer meals at concessional (low or reduced) prices to homeless persons.
House-to-house trade route means any retail food business operated from a truck, bus, pushcart, or other mobile vehicle.
Identification (ID) card means a card which identifies the bearer as eligible to receive and use food coupons.
Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) means the Immigration and Naturalization Service, U.S. Department of Justice.
Indian tribe means: (1) Any Indian tribe, Band, Nation, or other organized Indian group on a reservation for example, a Rancheria, Pueblo or Colony, and including any Alaska Native Village or regional or village corporation (established pursuant to the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (85 Stat. 688)), that is on a reservation and is recognized as eligible for Federal programs and services provided to Indians because of their status as Indians; or (2) any Indian tribe or Band on a reservation holding a treaty with a State government.
Indian tribal organization (ITO) means: (1) The recognized governing body of any Indian tribe on a reservation; or (2) the tribally recognized intertribal organization which the recognized governing bodies of two or more Indian tribes on a reservation authorizes to operate the Food Stamp Program or a Food Distribution Program on their behalf.
Insured financial institution means a financial institution insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) or financial institutions which are insured under the Federal Credit Union Act and which have retail food stores or wholesale food concerns in their field of membership.
Issuance month in a Monthly Reporting and Retrospective Budgeting system means the fiscal or calendar month for which the State agency shall issue a food stamp allotment. Issuance is based upon income and circumstances in the corresponding budget month. In prospective budgeting, the budget month and issuance month are the same. In retrospective budgeting, the issuance month follows the budget month and the issuance month shall begin within 32 days after the end of the budget month.
Large project area means those project areas/management units with monthly active caseloads of more than 15,000 households based on the most current information available at the time the large project area review schedule is developed.
Low-income household means a household whose annual income does not exceed 125 percent of the Office of Management and Budget poverty guidelines.
Management Evaluation (ME) reviews means reviews conducted by States at the project area level to determine if State agencies are administering and operating the Food Stamp Program in accordance with program requirements.
Management unit means an area based on a welfare district, region, or other administrative structure designated by the State agency and approved by FNS to be reviewed for ME review purposes.
Master issuance file means a cumulative file containing the individual records and status of households, and the amount of benefits, if any, each household is authorized to receive.
Meal delivery service means a political subdivision, a private nonprofit organization, or a private establishment with which a State or local agency has contracted for the preparation and delivery of meals at concessional prices to elderly persons, and their spouses, and to the physically or mentally handicapped and persons otherwise disabled, and their spouses, such that they are unable to adequately prepare all of their meals.
Medicaid means medical assistance under title XIX of the Social Security Act, as amended.
Medium project area means those project areas/management units with monthly active caseloads of 2,001 to 15,000 households based on the most current information available at the time the medium project area review schedule is developed.
Minimum benefit means the minimum monthly amount of food stamps that one- and two-person households receive. The amount of the minimum benefit shall be $10.
National performance measure means the sum of the products of each State agency's payment error rate times that State agency's proportion of the total value of the national allotments issued for the fiscal year using the most recent issuance data available at the time the State agency is notified of its performance error rate.
Negative case means any action taken to deny, suspend, or terminate a case.
Negative case error rate means an estimate of the proportion of denied, suspended, or terminated cases where the household was incorrectly denied, suspended, or terminated. This estimate will be expressed as a percentage of completed negative quality control reviews excluding all results from cases processed by SSA personnel or participating in a demonstration project identified by FNS as having certification rules that are significantly different from standard requirements.
Newly work registered food stamp participants work registered at the point of application.
Nonprofit cooperative food purchasing venture means any private nonprofit association of consumers whose members pool their resources to buy food.
Offset year means the calendar year during which offsets may be made to collect certain recipient claims from individuals' Federal income tax refunds.
Overissuance means the amount by which coupons issued to a household exceeds the amount it was eligible to receive.
Overpayment error rate means the percentage of the value of all allotments issued in a fiscal year that are either: (1) Issued to households that fail to meet basic program eligibility requirements, or
Overissued to eligible households.
Payment error rate means the sum of the point estimates of two component error rates: an overpayment error rate and an underpayment error rate. Each component error rate is the value of allotments either overissued or underissued expressed as a percentage of all allotments issued to completed active sample cases, excluding those cases processed by SSA personnel or participating in certain demonstration projects designated by FNS.
Placed in an employment and training (E&T) program means a State agency may count a person as “placed” in an E&T program when the individual commences a component.
Program means the food stamp program conducted under the Food Stamp Act and regulations.
Project area means the county or similar political subdivision designated by a State as the administrative unit for program operations. Upon prior FNS approval, a city, Indian reservation, welfare district, or any other entity with clearly defined geographic boundaries, or any combination of such entities, may be designated as a project area, or a State as a whole may be designated as a single project area.
Prospective budgeting in a Monthly Reporting and Retrospective Budgeting system means the computation of a household's food stamp allotment for an issuance month based on an estimate of income and circumstances which will exist in that month.
Public assistance (PA) means any of the following programs authorized by the Social Security Act of 1935, as amended: Old-age assistance, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), including TANF for children of unemployed fathers, aid to the blind, aid to the permanently and totally disabled and aid to aged, blind, or disabled.
Quality control review means a review of a statistically valid sample of active and negative cases to determine the extent to which households are receiving the food stamp allotments to which they are entitled, and to determine the extent to which decisions to deny, suspend, or terminate cases are correct.
Record-for-issuance file means a file which is created monthly from the master issuance file, which shows the amount of benefits each eligible household is to receive for the issuance month, and the amount actually issued to the household.
Regulations means the provisions of this subchapter. Regulatory citations refer to provisions of this subchapter unless otherwise specified.
Reservation means the geographically defined area or areas over which an ITO exercises governmental jurisdiction so long as such area or areas are legally recognized by the Federal or a State government as being set aside for the use of Indians.
Retail food store means:
An establishment or house-to-house trade route that sells food for home preparation and consumption normally displayed in a public area, and either offers for sale, on a continuous basis, a variety of foods in sufficient quantities in each of the four categories of staple foods including perishable foods in at least two such categories (Criterion A) as set forth in § 278.1(b)(1) of this chapter, or has more than 50 percent of its total gross retail sales in staple foods (Criterion B) as set forth in § 278.1(b)(1) of this chapter as determined by visual inspection, marketing structure, business licenses, accessibility of food items offered for sale, purchase and sales records, counting of stockkeeping units, or other inventory or accounting recordkeeping methods that are customary or reasonable in the retail food industry as set forth in § 278.1(b)(1) of this chapter. Entities that have more than 50 percent of their total gross retail sales in hot and/or cold prepared, ready-to-eat foods that are intended for immediate consumption either for carry-out or on-premises consumption, and require no additional preparation, are not eligible for FSP participation as retail food stores under § 278.1(b)(1) of this chapter.
Public or private communal dining facilities and meal delivery services; private nonprofit drug addict or alcoholic treatment and rehabilitation programs; publicly operated community mental health centers which conduct residential programs for drug addicts and/or alcoholics; public or private nonprofit group living arrangements; public or private nonprofit shelters for battered women and children; public or private nonprofit establishments, approved by an appropriate State or local agency, that feed homeless persons; or a restaurant that contracts with an appropriate State agency to provide meals at concessional (low or reduced) prices to homeless food stamp households;
Any stores selling equipment for procuring food by hunting and fishing to eligible households in Alaska, as specified in the definition of eligible foods;
Any private nonprofit cooperative food purchasing venture, including those whose members pay for food prior to receipt of the food; and
Retrospective budgeting in a Monthly Reporting and Retrospective Budgeting system means the computation of a household's food stamp allotment for an issuance month based on actual income and circumstances which existed in a previous month, the “budget month.”
Review date for quality control active cases means a day within the sample month, either the first day of the calendar or fiscal month or the day a certification action was taken to authorize the allotment, whichever is later. The “review date” for negative cases, depending on the characteristics of individual State systems, could be the date on which the eligibility worker makes the decision to suspend, deny, or terminate the case, the date on which the decision is entered into the computer system, the date of the notice to the client or the date the negative action becomes effective. For no case is the “review date” the day the quality control review is conducted.
Review period means the 12-month period from October 1 of each calendar year through September 30 of the following calendar year.
Sample frame means a list of all units from which a sample is actually selected.
Sample month means the month of the sample frame from which a case is selected (e.g., for all cases selected from a frame consisting of households participating in January, the sample month is January).
Screening an evaluation by the eligibility worker as to whether a person should or should not be referred for participation in an employment and training program. This activity would not be considered an approvable E&T component.
Secretary means the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Shelter for battered women and children means a public or private nonprofit residential facility that serves battered women and their children. If such a facility serves other individuals, a portion of the facility must be set aside on a long-term basis to serve only battered women and children.
Small project area means those project areas/management units with monthly active caseloads of 2,000 households or fewer based on the most current information available at the time the small project area review schedule is developed.
SSA processed/demonstration case means a case that is participating or has been denied based upon processing by SSA personnel or is participating or has been denied/terminated based upon the rules of a demonstration project with significantly different certification rules (as identified by FNS).
Staple food means those food items intended for home preparation and consumption in each of the following food categories: meat, poultry, or fish; bread or cereals; vegetables or fruits; and dairy products. Commercially processed foods and prepared mixtures with multiple ingredients shall only be counted in one staple food category. For example, foods such as cold pizza, macaroni and cheese, multi-ingredient soup, or frozen dinners, shall only be counted as one staple food item and will normally be included in the staple food category of the main ingredient as determined by FNS. Hot foods are not eligible for purchase with food stamps and, therefore, do not qualify as staple foods for the purpose of determining eligibility under § 278.1(b)(1) of this chapter. Accessory food items including, but not limited to, coffee, tea, cocoa, carbonated and uncarbonated drinks, candy, condiments, and spices shall not be considered staple foods for the purpose of determining eligibility of any firm. However, accessory foods that are offered for sale in authorized retail food stores are eligible food items which may be purchased with food stamp benefits.
State means any one of the fifty States, the District of Columbia, Guam, the Virgin Islands of the United States, and the reservation of an Indian tribe whose ITO meets the requirements of the Food Stamp Act for participation as a State agency.
State agency means: (1) The agency of State government, including the local offices thereof, which is responsible for the administration of the federally aided public assistance programs within the State, and in those States where such assistance programs are operated on a decentralized basis, it includes the counterpart local agencies which administer such assistance programs for the State agency, and (2) the Indian tribal organization of any Indian tribe determined by the Department to be capable of effectively administering a Food Stamp Program or a Food Distribution Program in accordance with provisions of the Food Stamp Act of 1977.
State Income and Eligibility Verification System (IEVS) means a system of information acquisition and exchange for purposes of income and eligibility verification which meets the requirements of section 1137 of the Social Security Act, generally referred to as the IEVS.
State Wage Information Collection Agency (SWICA) means the State agency administering the State unemployment compensation law, another agency administering a quarterly wage reporting system, or a State agency administering an alternative system which has been determined by the Secretary of Labor, in consultation with the Secretary of Agriculture and the Secretary of Health and Human Services, to be as effective and timely in providing employment related income and eligibility data as the two just mentioned agencies.
Sub-units means the physical location of an organizational entity within a project area/management unit involved in the operation of the Food Stamp Program, excluding Post Offices.
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) means monthly cash payments made under the authority of: (1) Title XVI of the Social Security Act, as amended, to the aged, blind and disabled; (2) section 1616(a) of the Social Security Act; or (3) section 212(a) of Pub. L. 93-66.
Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE) means the INS program whereby State agencies may verify the validity of documents provided by aliens applying for food stamp benefits by obtaining information from a central data file.
Thrifty food plan means the diet required to feed a family of four persons consisting of a man and a woman 20 through 50, a child 6 through 8, and a child 9 through 11 years of age, determined in accordance with the Secretary's calculations. The cost of such diet shall be the basis for uniform allotments for all households regardless of their actual composition. In order to develop maximum food stamp allotments, the Secretary shall make household size and other adjustments in the Thrifty Food Plan taking into account economies of scale and other adjustments as required by law.
Trafficking means the buying or selling of coupons, ATP cards or other benefit instruments for cash or consideration other than eligible food; or the exchange of firearms, ammunition, explosives, or controlled substances, as defined in section 802 of title 21, United States Code, for coupons.
Underissuance means the amount by which the allotment to which the household was entitled exceeds the allotment which the household received.
Underissuance error rate. (See Underpayment error rate.)
Underpayment error rate means the ratio of the value of allotments underissued to recipient households to the total value of allotments issued in a fiscal year by a State agency.
Universe means all units for which information is desired.
Variance means the incorrect application of policy and/or a deviation between the information that was used to authorize the sample month issuance and the verified information that should have been used to calculate the sample month issuance.
Wholesale food concern means an establishment which sells eligible food to retail food stores or to meal services for resale to households.
[Amdt. 132, 43 FR 47882, Oct. 17, 1978]
For Federal Register citations affecting § 271.2
, see the List of CFR Sections Affected, which appears in the Finding Aids section of the printed volume and at www.fdsys.gov.