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Final Rule: Food Distribution Programs - Implementation of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (Welfare Reform)

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This final rule amends provisions of the Food Distribution Program regulations and the Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) regulations to implement certain provisions of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996, commonly known as Welfare Reform, while generally streamlining and clarifying these regulations. In accordance with the Welfare Reform legislation, the provisions contained in this rule address various changes required by the repeal of section 110 of the Hunger Prevention Act of 1988, which authorized the former Soup Kitchens/Food Banks Program, the former beneficiaries of which are now served by an expanded TEFAP. It amends the definitions relating to organizational eligibility in TEFAP to reflect the program consolidation, and to achieve consistency with the Emergency Food Assistance Act of 1983 as amended by Welfare Reform. Changes to these and other definitions also provide greater clarity to the regulations. As mandated by Welfare Reform, this rule also changes the required content and frequency of submission of the TEFAP state plan of operation, and encourages state agencies to create advisory boards comprised of public and private entities with an interest in the distribution of TEFAP commodities. In addition, this rule broadens the allowable uses of TEFAP administrative funds at the state and local levels, and provides greater flexibility for state agencies in meeting the TEFAP maintenance-of-effort requirement. Finally, in order to reduce the paperwork burden and afford state agencies greater flexibility, this rule makes discretionary changes in TEFAP recordkeeping, monitoring, and reporting requirements.

12/29/1999