|DATE:||January 17, 2023|
|SUBJECT:||Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP): Caseload Assignments for the 2023 Caseload Cycle and Administrative Grants|
Special Nutrition Programs
All Regional Offices
CSFP State Agencies
All CSFP State Agencies
On Dec. 29, 2022, President Biden signed the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023 (PL 117-328) into law, which provides $338.64 million for the Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP) for fiscal year (FY) 2023. Based on this funding level, the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) is issuing a final national caseload allocation of 760,547 slots for the 2023 caseload cycle (Jan. 1, 2023 to Dec. 31, 2023), equal to the final national caseload allocation amount for the 2022 caseload cycle. FNS is allocating final caseload and administrative grants for 2023 to CSFP state agencies, including Indian Tribal Organizations (ITOs) and U.S. Territories, as provided below.
Final Caseload Assignments for Currently Participating CSFP State Agencies
In accordance with CSFP regulations at 7 CFR Part 247, CSFP state agencies entering their second year of program operation receive base caseload equal to that received for the first year of program operation. The Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska and the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians, which FNS added to the program in 2022, are receiving base caseload levels equal to their respective 2022 assigned caseload levels. For all other state agencies which began CSFP participation prior to 2022, base caseload for the 2023 caseload cycle is equal to the highest of:
- Average monthly participation for FY 2022;
- Average monthly participation for the last quarter of FY 2022; or
- Participation during September 2022, but only if1:
- The full-year appropriation for the preceding fiscal year was enacted on or after February 15;
- The state agency received additional caseload equal to or greater than 10 percent of its base caseload in 2022; and
- October 2022 participation was equal to or greater than 95 percent of September 2022 participation.
CSFP regulations further provide that for each CSFP state agency, calculated base caseload for 2023 cannot be greater than total assigned caseload for 2022. Current resources are sufficient to support each state’s base caseload for the 2023 caseload cycle. Additionally, because several states did not fully use their 2022 assigned caseload, total calculated national base caseload is 687,591 slots, leaving 72,956 additional caseload slots available for allocation.
Additional Caseload Eligibility and COVID-19
This additional caseload is first being allocated among all eligible state agencies, which will receive their full additional caseload requests. The remaining share of caseload is being awarded to the state agencies which requested additional caseload with a COVID-19 justification but did not meet the 95 percent requirement. Each of these states is being allocated a proportional share of the total remaining caseload slots based on its base caseload, up to its total additional caseload request, capped at the final 2022 caseload amount. Where a proportional share exceeds any state’s additional caseload request, the remaining caseload is being allocated proportionally to the remaining states.
As background, per program regulations at 7 CFR 247.21(a)(2), CSFP state agencies must achieve a participation level which was equal to or greater than 95 percent of assigned caseload for the previous caseload cycle in order to be eligible for additional caseload, based on the performance periods referenced above.
During FY 2022, the continued COVID-19 pandemic led to CSFP participation drops which caused some states to be ineligible for additional caseload under program regulatory requirements. Thirty-three (33) of the 36 state agencies which did not meet the 95 percent regulatory threshold submitted requests to FNS for additional caseload along with a justification explaining how the COVID-19 pandemic impacted their participation in FY 2022.
Section 301 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (Stafford Act, 42 USC 5141) allows federal agencies to waive or modify administrative conditions for assistance during major disasters if so requested by the applicant state or local authorities. All 50 states, the District of Columbia, and four U.S. Territories were issued major disaster declarations in response to the COVID-19 public health emergency.
FNS is using this authority to waive the 95 percent additional caseload eligibility threshold for these 33 state agencies and allow them to receive additional caseload in 2023. These 33 state agencies are noted in the attached chart, Attachment A. However, it should be noted that this flexibility is being phased out and will not be available for the 2024 caseload cycle (Jan. 1, 2024 through Dec. 31, 2024).
Caseload Use and Food Orders in 2023
Program regulations require that CSFP state agencies ensure that program participation levels do not exceed assigned caseload on an average monthly basis. In order to ensure sufficient resources are available to serve CSFP participants throughout the year, any states currently exceeding 2023 caseload assignments must work to reduce participation levels to reflect such assignments. At the same time, states must attempt to fully use their 2023 caseload assignments. States that are receiving caseload increases must work to increase participation levels immediately. In order to efficiently utilize caseload, states must monitor participation carefully. Per CSFP regulations at 7 CFR 247.21, caseload assignments in 2024 will depend on each state’s caseload use this year.
It is crucial that state agencies manage caseload and USDA Foods in the most efficient manner possible. States are required to accurately track and maintain appropriate inventory levels at the state level. Regulations at 7 CFR Part 250 prohibit CSFP state level inventories from exceeding three months on-hand without approval from FNS.
FNS regional offices (ROs) closely monitor states’ year-to-date participation levels and food orders. FNS ROs will reduce food orders if needed to ensure that state agencies do not exceed their assigned caseloads or over-order USDA Foods.
Administrative Grant per Assigned Caseload Slot
The Agriculture and Consumer Protection Act of 1973 (PL 93-86), as amended, mandates an administrative grant per assigned caseload slot be adjusted each fiscal year to reflect inflation. The mandatory grant per assigned caseload slot for FY 2023 is $93.19.
The attached chart, Attachment A, displays final caseload assignments and administrative grants for each state agency. Administrative funds for use over the remainder of the FY are subject to apportionment by the Office of Management and Budget. We will keep you informed regarding the availability of such funds.
CSFP state agencies should address questions to their FNS regional offices, which may in turn contact the Policy Division, Food Distribution Policy Branch.
Supplemental Nutrition and Safety Programs