Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comment Request-Generic Clearance To Conduct Pre-Testing of Surveys
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice invites the general public and other public agencies to comment on this proposed information collection. This is a new collection to conduct various procedures to test questionnaires and survey procedures to improve the quality and usability of information collection instruments.
Requirements for the Distribution and Control of Donated Foods
This rule proposes to revise and clarify requirements to ensure that USDA donated foods are distributed, stored, and managed in the safest, most efficient, and cost-effective manner, at State and recipient agency levels. The rule would also reduce administrative and reporting requirements for State distributing agencies, revise or clarify regulatory provisions relating to accountability for donated foods, and rewrite much of the regulations in a more user-friendly, ``plain language,'' format. Lastly, the rule proposes to revise and clarify specific requirements to conform more closely to related requirements elsewhere in the Code of Federal Regulations. In formulating the proposals, the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) has utilized input received from program administrators, industry representatives, and other organizations at national conferences and other meetings, and through email or other routine communications with such parties.
Request for Information: Unpaid Meal Charges
The National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs play a critical role in ensuring that America's children have access to nutritious food. The Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) subsidizes all school meals in participating schools in various ways including reimbursement for meals served based on the eligibility of the child receiving the meal. FNS reimburses schools at higher rates for those meals served to children eligible for free meals and reduced price meals. Schools are responsible for establishing paid meal prices for children who do not receive free or reduced price meals and whose meals are thus reimbursed by FNS at lower rates. If children do not have the required payment for meals on the day of service, schools may extend credit to the child for the meal. Generally, this process entails the school allowing the child to ``charge'' the meal with the understanding that the child will reimburse or pay back the school for the meal provided. Since credit policies are usually established at the school district level, they vary across the nation and within States and are not monitored by FNS. FNS considers access to healthy school meals including nutritious foods a critical function of the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs. Evidence shows that children who regularly eat healthy school meals perform better in the classroom and are less likely to be overweight. However, FNS also recognizes that allowing children to ``charge'' school meals can have financial impacts on individual schools and even school districts. This is especially true when meal charges are not subsequently paid, results in large unpaid meal charges and potential financial losses. Section 143 of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 (HHFKA) requires FNSin conjunction with States and participating local educational agencies (LEAs)to examine and report on the current policies and practices of State agencies and LEAs regarding extending credit to children by allowing them to ``charge'' the cost of school meals on the day of service. As required by the HHFKA, this examination must include the feasibility of establishing national standards for extending credit to children by allowing meal charges, establishing national charges for alternate meals which might be served, and providing recommendations for implementing those standards. At this time, FNS is seeking information from all affected parties regarding State and LEA current policies regarding extending credit to children by allowing them to ``charge'' the cost of school meals on the day of service. Specifically, FNS is interested in commenters providing details of policies and procedures in their State or LEA and the advantages and challenges associated with those procedures.
Agency Information Collection Activities: Notice of Emergency Approval of New Information Collection for Feasibility of Tribal Administration of Federal Nutrition Assistance Programs
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces FNS' intention to request emergency approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and invites the general public and other public agencies to comment on this proposed information collection. This is a new collection for the purpose of determining the interest among Indian Tribal Organizations (ITOs) in administering FNS programs, the capacity of ITOs to do so, and legislative and regulatory implications.
Request for Information: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Revision of the Program and Budget Summary Statement Part B-Program Activity Statement
Each year, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) State agencies are required to submit the Program and Budget Summary Statement Part B, Program Activity Statement (FNS-366B) to the Food Nutrition Service (FNS) per 7 CFR 272.2(c)(ii). Information collected on this form includes fraud activity for the reporting fiscal year such as a total number of fraud referrals, investigations, prosecutions, disqualification consent agreements (DCA), administrative disqualification hearings (ADH) and ADH waivers. This form further contains data on program dollars associated with pre-certification and post-certification fraud investigations, as well as program dollars that may be recovered resulting from an ADH or prosecution. This information is reported not later than 45 days after the end of the State agency's fiscal year, which is typically August 15th for most States. FNS is contemplating proposed changes to this form in order to improve the reliability and accuracy of State integrity reporting by revising data field definitions, such as what constitutes an investigation, for clarity and consistency. FNS is also considering an increase in the frequency of reporting and would be interested in better understanding what impact increasing the reporting frequency may have on stakeholders. Furthermore, FNS is considering the addition of new data elements in order to better understand the impact and value returned to the taxpayer as a result of fraud prevention activities. Through this notice, FNS announces a request for information regarding the impacts for consideration in revising the Program Activity Statement (FNS- 366B). FNS will consider all comments in the development of the new reporting form.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection, Comment Request: Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children Infant and Toddler Feeding Practices Study
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice invites the public and other public agencies to comment on this proposed information collection. This collection is a revision of the currently approved WIC Infant and Toddler Feeding Practices 2 Study (ITFPS-2). The revision is to amend the 24-month data collection instrument and extend the data collection on the cohort of infants by one year, to their 3rd birthday. The data will be used to estimate the type and prevalence of various feeding practices in the WIC population and assess whether the new WIC food packages (instituted in 2009) have influenced feeding practices. This study will also examine the circumstances and influences that shape mothers' feeding decisions for their children, and will describe the impact of these decisions throughout early child development.