Establishing the Summer EBT Program and Rural Non-Congregate Option in the Summer Meal Programs
The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023 requires the Secretary of Agriculture to make available an option to States to provide summer meals for non-congregate meal service in rural areas with no congregate meal service and to establish a permanent summer electronic benefits transfer for children program (Summer EBT) for the purpose of ensuring continued access to food when school is not in session for the summer. This interim final rule amends the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) and the National School Lunch Program's Seamless Summer Option (SSO) regulations to codify the flexibility for rural program operators to provide non-congregate meal service in the SFSP and SSO, collectively referred to as the summer meal programs. This rule also establishes regulations and codifies the Summer EBT Program in the Code of Federal Regulations.
Agency Information Collection Activities: 2024-2025 National School Foods Study
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 collection is a new collection that combines the School Nutrition and Meal Cost Study-II (SNMCS-II), School Food Purchase Study-IV (SFPS-IV), and a second Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program Evaluation (FFVP-II) into one coordinated effort named the 2024-2025 National School Foods Study. The purpose of this combined effort is to reduce overall burden for respondents across the three studies and provide a comprehensive picture of the school- based child nutrition (CN) programs in the 2024-2025 school year.
Provisions To Improve the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program's Quality Control System
The U.S. Department of Agriculture proposed to make changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program's Quality Control (SNAP QC) system to strengthen and improve the integrity and accuracy of the system and to better align SNAP QC with requirements in the Payment Integrity Information Act of 2019 (PIIA). When published, the proposed rule included an incorrect email address for comments; the reopening of the comment period is intended to allow additional time for the public to submit comments in the event the original comment submission was returned as undeliverable due to the incorrect email address.
Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC): Implementation of the Access to Baby Formula Act of 2022 and Related Provisions
This rulemaking serves to amend the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Program regulations by incorporating provisions of the Access to Baby Formula Act of 2022 and making related amendments. ABFA establishes waiver authority for the Secretary of Agriculture to address certain emergencies, disasters, and supply chain disruptions impacting WIC, and adds requirements to State agency infant formula cost containment contracts to protect against disruptions to the Program in the event of a recall. The provisions focus on improving State agencies' ability to ensure continuity of Program operations during emergency periods (i.e., emergencies, disasters, and public health emergencies) and supply chain disruptions, while ensuring access to Program benefits among low-income pregnant and postpartum participants, infants, and children up to 5 years of age who are at nutritional risk.
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program: Revision of Civil Rights Data Collection Methods
This rule finalizes provisions of a proposed rule published on June 27, 2022. With this final rule, the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) is revising Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) regulations that cover collecting and reporting race and ethnicity data by State agencies on persons receiving benefits from SNAP. This rule removes regulatory language that provides an example that State agencies might collect race and ethnicity data by observation (also referred to as ``visual observation'') when participants do not voluntarily provide the information on the application form. In addition, based on feedback from the commenters, this rule prohibits using visual observation as a data collection method for race and ethnicity. Through this rulemaking, FNS intends to improve the quality of data collected for purposes of Federal civil rights law and policy including title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. USDA's Food and Nutrition Service is committed to promoting equity and inclusion through its Federal nutrition assistance programs. This regulatory change is consistent with this Administration's priorities and furthers FNS' commitment to building equitable and inclusive systems for nutrition access.
Agency Information Collection Activities: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed) Connection Resource Sharing Form
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice invites the general public and other public agencies to comment on this proposed revision to the currently approved information collection for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) form FNS-889, ``SNAP Education (SNAP-Ed) Connection Resource Sharing Form.'' This revision to the information collection will improve the submission process by clarifying the information requested for certain fields, thus providing data that is accurate and beneficial to stakeholders using the resource. These updates will also align with the new SNAP-Ed National Program Evaluation and Reporting System (N-PEARS) (OMB Control #0584-0683, expiration 4/30/2026), to ensure consistency with SNAP-Ed specific terms. With this update to form FNS-889, FNS has determined that nutrition and physical activity interventions (i.e., educational materials, curricula, etc.), will no longer be accepted through this information collection.
Agency Information Collection Activities: Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Farmers' Market Nutrition Program (FMNP)-Reporting and Recordkeeping Burden
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), this notice invites the general public and other public agencies to comment on this proposed information collection. This collection is a revision of a currently approved collection for the reporting and recordkeeping burden associated with the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Farmers' Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) regulations.
Agency Information Collection Activities: Recordkeeping of D-SNAP Benefit Issuance and Commodity Distribution for Disaster Relief
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 collection is an extension of a currently approved collection. This information collection addresses the recordkeeping burden associated with forms FNS-292A (Report of Commodity Distribution for Disaster Relief) and FNS-292B (Report of Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Benefit Issuance).