7 CFR § 247.7 - Selection of local agencies.
(a) How does a local agency apply to participate in CSFP? Local agencies wishing to participate in CSFP must submit a written application to the State agency. The application must describe how the local agency will operate the program and, for nonprofit agencies, must include the agency's tax-exempt status. To be eligible to participate in CSFP, a nonprofit agency must have tax-exempt status under the Internal Revenue Code (IRC), or have applied for tax-exempt status with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and be moving towards such status. Nonprofit agencies organized or operated exclusively for religious purposes are automatically tax-exempt under the IRC. Nonprofit agencies required to obtain tax-exempt status must provide documentation from the IRS that they have obtained such status, or have applied for it.
(b) On what basis does the State agency make a decision on the local agency's application? The State agency must approve or disapprove the local agency's application based on, at minimum, the following criteria:
(1) The ability of the local agency to operate the program in accordance with Federal and State requirements;
(2) The need for the program in the projected service area of the local agency;
(3) The resources available (caseload and funds) for initiating a program in the local area; and
(4) For nonprofit agencies, the tax-exempt status, with appropriate documentation.
(c) What must the State agency do if a nonprofit agency approved for CSFP is subsequently denied tax-exempt status by the IRS, or does not obtain this status within a certain period of time? In accordance with paragraph (a) of this section, the State agency may approve a nonprofit agency that has applied to the IRS for tax-exempt status, and is moving toward compliance with the requirements for recognition of tax-exempt status. However, if the IRS subsequently denies a participating agency's application for recognition of tax-exempt status, the agency must immediately notify the State agency of the denial. The State agency must terminate the agency's agreement and participation immediately upon notification. If documentation of recognition of tax-exempt status is not received within 180 days of the effective date of the agency's approval to participate in CSFP, the State agency must terminate the agency's participation until such time as recognition of tax-exempt status is obtained. However, the State agency may grant an extension of 90 days if the agency demonstrates that its inability to obtain tax-exempt status in the 180-day period is due to circumstances beyond its control.
(d) How much time does the State agency have to make a decision on the local agency's application? The State agency must inform the local agency of approval or denial of the application within 60 days of its receipt. If the application is denied, the State agency must provide a written explanation for the denial, along with notification of the local agency's right to appeal the decision, in accordance with § 247.35. If the application is approved, the State and local agency must enter into an agreement in accordance with the requirements of § 247.4.