Request for Information: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Income Conversion Factors for Anticipated Income, 13791-13792 [2017-05133]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 49 / Wednesday, March 15, 2017 / Notices included for the convenience of the State agencies because the poverty guidelines for Alaska and Hawaii are higher than for the 48 contiguous States. Authority: 42 U.S.C. 1786. Dated: February 27, 2017. Jessica Shahin, Acting Administrator, Food and Nutrition Service, USDA. [FR Doc. 2017–05119 Filed 3–14–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–30–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Food and Nutrition Service Request for Information: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Income Conversion Factors for Anticipated Income Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), USDA. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) seeks input on the use of the current Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) income conversion factors used to anticipate a household’s income for the purposes of SNAP eligibility when a household’s income is received on a weekly or biweekly basis. FNS hopes to obtain perspective from State agencies and other stakeholders as it considers how to best balance the flexibilities States are granted in calculating anticipated monthly income under current SNAP regulations, while adhering to the legislative intent of reducing administrative burden on State agencies and removing barriers to eligibility for needy households. DATES: Written comments must be received on or before May 15, 2017. ADDRESSES: Comments may be sent to Sasha Gersten-Paal, Chief, Certification Policy Branch, Program Development Division, Food and Nutrition Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, 3101 Park Center Drive, Room 812, Alexandria, VA 22302. Comments will also be accepted through the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Go to https:// www.regulations.gov and follow the online instructions for submitting comments electronically. All written comments will be open for public inspection at the FNS office located at 3101 Park Center Drive, Alexandria, Virginia, 22302, Room 812, during regular business hours (8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday). All responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the request for Office of Management and Budget asabaliauskas on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES2 SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:19 Mar 14, 2017 Jkt 241001 (OMB) approval. All comments will be a matter of public record. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Requests for additional information or copies of this request for information should be directed to Sasha GerstenPaal via email to Sasha.Gersten-Paal@ fns.usda.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SNAP regulations at 7 CFR 273.10(c)(2)(i) provide State agencies with three options when converting weekly and biweekly income into anticipated monthly income: Multiplying by 4.3 for weekly income or by 2.15 for biweekly income; using the State agency’s public assistance (PA) conversion standard; or, using a household’s exact amount, if it can be anticipated. These options have been available to State agencies since the enactment of the Food Stamp Act of 1977, and the majority of States opt to use the first set of conversion factors. Generally, when calculating a SNAP recipient’s benefit amount, the lower the recipient’s income, the greater their SNAP benefit will be. Some stakeholders contend that using the first set of conversion factors (4.3 for weekly income or 2.15 for biweekly income) underestimates a recipient’s actual monthly income, which in turn raises the amount of the recipient’s SNAP benefit. These stakeholders maintain that not only does this result in an overpayment to the recipient, it also creates inequity between SNAP recipients paid on a monthly basis and those paid on a weekly or biweekly basis. These stakeholders recommend that FNS increase income conversion accuracy by amending current SNAP regulations to carry the current factors out by two decimal places, specifically, to 4.33 for weekly income, and 2.17 for biweekly income. In 1971, Congress amended the Food Stamp Act of 1964 and directed FNS to establish standards of eligibility for the Food Stamp Program. In implementing the amendment, FNS began adjusting a household’s monthly income to include income anticipated to be received during the certification period. For income received less frequently than a monthly basis, the factors used to average income were 4.3 for weekly income, and 2.15 for biweekly income. In the Food Stamp Act of 1977, Congress expanded the definition of anticipated income in Section 5(f) to include ‘‘income reasonably anticipated to be received’’ during the certification period, and again provided FNS the authority to establish standards for calculating anticipated income. The House Committee of Agriculture’s Report on the Food Stamp Act of 1977 PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 13791 states that the purpose in adopting this standard was ‘‘. . . to smooth the way for participation by the needy, not to place obstacles in their path by making them out to be less needy than they in fact are.’’ FNS codified these conversion factors through rulemaking, including a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking published on May 2, 1978, and a Final Rule published on October 17, 1978. Between the Proposed Rulemaking and the Final Rule, FNS received nearly 500 comments regarding the sections on determining anticipated income. In the preamble to the Final Rule, FNS stated that ‘‘State and local agencies were frequently concerned with the use of the proposed multipliers for converting income received on a weekly (4.3) or biweekly (2.15) basis. Some recommended using 4.333 and 2.167 to conform to the [Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC)] factors for weekly and biweekly income conversions.’’ To address this concern, in addition to using the established factors of 4.3 and 2.15, the Final Rule permitted State agencies to align their conversion factors with other public assistance programs, or to use the exact monthly figure if it could be obtained for the entire certification period. In 1981, Congress added Section 5(f)(4) to the Act and directed FNS to ensure, ‘‘to the extent feasible,’’ that the income of households receiving both Food Stamp benefits and benefits from AFDC, the predecessor to Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, were ‘‘calculated on a comparable basis under the two Acts.’’ With this history in mind, FNS is seeking information from State agency partners and stakeholders on the following particular questions: 1. Of the three income conversion options provided by 7 CFR 273.10(c)(2)(i), which option does your State agency use? a. Why does your State agency use this particular option? b. What are the perceived strengths, if any, of this option? c. What are the perceived weaknesses, if any, of this option? 2. What, if any, administrative challenges would your State agency face in adopting a different income conversion option? 3. What, if any, technological challenges would your State agency face in adopting a different income conversion option? 4. Is there another methodology in converting weekly and biweekly income that FNS should consider? E:\FR\FM\15MRN1.SGM 15MRN1 13792 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 49 / Wednesday, March 15, 2017 / Notices a. Why should this methodology be used in place of the current options outlined in 7 CFR 273.10(c)(2)(i)? b. Does this methodology support the legislative intent of Congress in removing barriers to access to households in need of nutritional assistance? c. Does this methodology support the legislative intent of Congress to grant States more flexibility? Dated: March 6, 2017. Jessica Shahin, Acting Administrator, Food and Nutrition Service. [FR Doc. 2017–05133 Filed 3–14–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–30–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Forest Service Humboldt (NV) Resource Advisory Committee Forest Service, USDA. Notice of meeting. AGENCY: ACTION: The Humboldt (NV) Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) will meet in Winnemucca, Nevada. The committee is authorized under the Secure Rural Schools and Community SelfDetermination Act (the Act) and operates in compliance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act. The purpose of the committee is to improve collaborative relationships and to provide advice and recommendations to the Forest Service concerning projects and funding consistent with the Act. DATES: The meeting will be held on March 29, 2017, at 9:00 a.m., Pacific Standard Time (PST). All RAC meetings are subject to cancellation. For status of meeting prior to attendance, please contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. ADDRESSES: The meeting will be held at the USDA Service Center, 3275 Fountain Way, Winnemucca, Nevada 89445. The meeting can also be attended by teleconference. For anyone who would like to attend by teleconference, please visit https://fs.usda.gov/goto/htnf/ rac or contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. Written comments may be submitted as described under SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. All comments, including names and addresses when provided, are placed in the record and are available for public inspection and copying. The public may inspect comments received at the USDA Service Center. Please call ahead to facilitate entry into the building. asabaliauskas on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES2 SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:19 Mar 14, 2017 Jkt 241001 FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Joseph Garrotto, Designated Federal Officer, by phone at (775) 352–1215 or via email at jgarrotto@fs.fed.us. Individuals who use telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1–800–877–8339 between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m., Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The purpose of the meeting is to: 1. Elect Chair/Vice Chairperson, and 2. Review and recommend project proposals for Title II funds. The meeting is open to the public. The agenda will include time for people to make oral statements of three minutes or less. Individuals wishing to make an oral statement should request in writing by March 15, 2017, to be scheduled on the agenda. Anyone who would like to bring related matters to the attention of the committee may file written statements with the committee staff before or after the meeting. Written comments and requests for time to make oral comments must be sent to Wendy Markham, RAC Coordinator; by email to wmarkahm@fs.fed.us, or via facsimile to 775–623–9134. Meeting Accommodations: If you are a person requiring reasonable accommodation, please make requests in advance for sign language interpreting, assistive listening devices, or other reasonable accommodation. For access to the facility or proceedings, please contact the person listed in the section titled FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. All reasonable accommodation requests are managed on a case by case basis. Dated: February 24, 2017. Glenn Casamassa, Acting Associate Deputy Chief, National Forest System. [FR Doc. 2017–05101 Filed 3–14–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3411–15–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Census Bureau Notice of Correction to Federal Register Notice for 2018 End-to-End Census Test- Post-Enumeration Survey Independent Listing Operation U.S Census Bureau, Commerce. Notice of correction. AGENCY: ACTION: On December 28, 2016, Federal Register Document 2016–31410 was published, which provided the Census Bureau’s plans for the 2018 Endto-End Census Test- Post-Enumeration SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Survey Independent Listing Operation. This collection was subsequently cancelled. This Correction Notice serves as notification of the cancellation of this collection after the Federal Register Notice was published for public comment. Sheleen Dumas, PRA Departmental Lead, Office of the Chief Information Officer. [FR Doc. 2017–05142 Filed 3–14–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–07–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [C–580–837] Certain Cut-to-Length Carbon-Quality Steel Plate From the Republic of Korea: Preliminary Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review, and Preliminary Intent To Rescind in Part: Calendar Year 2015 Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce. AGENCY: The Department of Commerce (the Department) is conducting an administrative review of the countervailing duty (CVD) order on certain cut-to-length carbon-quality steel plate from the Republic of Korea (Korea) for the period January 1, 2015, through December 31, 2015. This review covers multiple exporters/producers; two of which are being individually examined as mandatory respondents. The Department preliminary determines that Hyundai Steel Co. (Hyundai Steel) received countervailable subsidies that are above de minimis and that Dongkuk Steel Mill Co., Ltd. (DSM) received countervailable subsidies that are de minimis. Therefore, we are applying to the five firms not selected for individual examination in the administrative review the above de minimis net subsidy rate calculated for Hyundai Steel. See the ‘‘Preliminary Results of Review’’ section below. SUMMARY: DATES: Effective March 15, 2017. John Conniff (for Hyundai Steel) or Jolanta Lawska (for DSM), AD/CVD Operations, Office III, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone (202) 482–1009 and (202) 482–8362, respectively. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: E:\FR\FM\15MRN1.SGM 15MRN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 49 (Wednesday, March 15, 2017)]
[Notices]
[Pages 13791-13792]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-05133]


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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Food and Nutrition Service


Request for Information: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance 
Program (SNAP) Income Conversion Factors for Anticipated Income

AGENCY: Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), USDA.

ACTION: Notice.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) seeks input on the use of 
the current Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) income 
conversion factors used to anticipate a household's income for the 
purposes of SNAP eligibility when a household's income is received on a 
weekly or biweekly basis. FNS hopes to obtain perspective from State 
agencies and other stakeholders as it considers how to best balance the 
flexibilities States are granted in calculating anticipated monthly 
income under current SNAP regulations, while adhering to the 
legislative intent of reducing administrative burden on State agencies 
and removing barriers to eligibility for needy households.

DATES: Written comments must be received on or before May 15, 2017.

ADDRESSES: Comments may be sent to Sasha Gersten-Paal, Chief, 
Certification Policy Branch, Program Development Division, Food and 
Nutrition Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, 3101 Park Center 
Drive, Room 812, Alexandria, VA 22302. Comments will also be accepted 
through the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Go to https://www.regulations.gov and follow the online instructions for submitting 
comments electronically. All written comments will be open for public 
inspection at the FNS office located at 3101 Park Center Drive, 
Alexandria, Virginia, 22302, Room 812, during regular business hours 
(8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday). All responses to this 
notice will be summarized and included in the request for Office of 
Management and Budget (OMB) approval. All comments will be a matter of 
public record.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Requests for additional information or 
copies of this request for information should be directed to Sasha 
Gersten-Paal via email to Sasha.Gersten-Paal@fns.usda.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SNAP regulations at 7 CFR 273.10(c)(2)(i) 
provide State agencies with three options when converting weekly and 
biweekly income into anticipated monthly income: Multiplying by 4.3 for 
weekly income or by 2.15 for biweekly income; using the State agency's 
public assistance (PA) conversion standard; or, using a household's 
exact amount, if it can be anticipated. These options have been 
available to State agencies since the enactment of the Food Stamp Act 
of 1977, and the majority of States opt to use the first set of 
conversion factors.
    Generally, when calculating a SNAP recipient's benefit amount, the 
lower the recipient's income, the greater their SNAP benefit will be. 
Some stakeholders contend that using the first set of conversion 
factors (4.3 for weekly income or 2.15 for biweekly income) 
underestimates a recipient's actual monthly income, which in turn 
raises the amount of the recipient's SNAP benefit. These stakeholders 
maintain that not only does this result in an overpayment to the 
recipient, it also creates inequity between SNAP recipients paid on a 
monthly basis and those paid on a weekly or biweekly basis. These 
stakeholders recommend that FNS increase income conversion accuracy by 
amending current SNAP regulations to carry the current factors out by 
two decimal places, specifically, to 4.33 for weekly income, and 2.17 
for biweekly income.
    In 1971, Congress amended the Food Stamp Act of 1964 and directed 
FNS to establish standards of eligibility for the Food Stamp Program. 
In implementing the amendment, FNS began adjusting a household's 
monthly income to include income anticipated to be received during the 
certification period. For income received less frequently than a 
monthly basis, the factors used to average income were 4.3 for weekly 
income, and 2.15 for biweekly income.
    In the Food Stamp Act of 1977, Congress expanded the definition of 
anticipated income in Section 5(f) to include ``income reasonably 
anticipated to be received'' during the certification period, and again 
provided FNS the authority to establish standards for calculating 
anticipated income. The House Committee of Agriculture's Report on the 
Food Stamp Act of 1977 states that the purpose in adopting this 
standard was ``. . . to smooth the way for participation by the needy, 
not to place obstacles in their path by making them out to be less 
needy than they in fact are.''
    FNS codified these conversion factors through rulemaking, including 
a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking published on May 2, 1978, and a Final 
Rule published on October 17, 1978. Between the Proposed Rulemaking and 
the Final Rule, FNS received nearly 500 comments regarding the sections 
on determining anticipated income. In the preamble to the Final Rule, 
FNS stated that ``State and local agencies were frequently concerned 
with the use of the proposed multipliers for converting income received 
on a weekly (4.3) or biweekly (2.15) basis. Some recommended using 
4.333 and 2.167 to conform to the [Aid to Families with Dependent 
Children (AFDC)] factors for weekly and biweekly income conversions.'' 
To address this concern, in addition to using the established factors 
of 4.3 and 2.15, the Final Rule permitted State agencies to align their 
conversion factors with other public assistance programs, or to use the 
exact monthly figure if it could be obtained for the entire 
certification period.
    In 1981, Congress added Section 5(f)(4) to the Act and directed FNS 
to ensure, ``to the extent feasible,'' that the income of households 
receiving both Food Stamp benefits and benefits from AFDC, the 
predecessor to Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, were 
``calculated on a comparable basis under the two Acts.''
    With this history in mind, FNS is seeking information from State 
agency partners and stakeholders on the following particular questions:
    1. Of the three income conversion options provided by 7 CFR 
273.10(c)(2)(i), which option does your State agency use?
    a. Why does your State agency use this particular option?
    b. What are the perceived strengths, if any, of this option?
    c. What are the perceived weaknesses, if any, of this option?
    2. What, if any, administrative challenges would your State agency 
face in adopting a different income conversion option?
    3. What, if any, technological challenges would your State agency 
face in adopting a different income conversion option?
    4. Is there another methodology in converting weekly and biweekly 
income that FNS should consider?

[[Page 13792]]

    a. Why should this methodology be used in place of the current 
options outlined in 7 CFR 273.10(c)(2)(i)?
    b. Does this methodology support the legislative intent of Congress 
in removing barriers to access to households in need of nutritional 
assistance?
    c. Does this methodology support the legislative intent of Congress 
to grant States more flexibility?

    Dated: March 6, 2017.
Jessica Shahin,
Acting Administrator, Food and Nutrition Service.
[FR Doc. 2017-05133 Filed 3-14-17; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3410-30-P