FY 2019 TEFAP Funding Memo
Four pieces of legislation currently govern the level of food and administrative resources available to TEFAP in FY 2019: the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018; the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008; the Emergency Food Assistance Act of 1983; and the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2019 (P.L. 116-6, the Appropriations Act), which provides funding through September 30, 2019.
Section 27(a) of the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 established the amount of funding available for TEFAP food purchases for FY 2009, and indexes that amount to annual changes in the Thrifty Food Plan (TFP), which is also used to determine the maximum benefit level for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Section 4018 of the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 maintained the funding formula established in Section 27(a) of the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008. The Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018 also added specified amounts annually, separate and distinct from the inflationary adjustments referenced above. In FY 2019, the amount available for TEFAP food purchases has been calculated by adding the FY 2009 TFP-adjusted funding level plus an additional $23 million.
Based on changes in the TFP and the additional funds from the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, the amount available for TEFAP food purchases in FY 2019 is $306.083million.Of this, $4.69 million is needed to pay costs associated with ordering and transporting the food, leaving $301.39 million for the purchase of food.
Carryover of State TEFAP Food Entitlement
Section 27(a) of the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 allows funds authorized for the purchase of TEFAP food to remain available for two fiscal years, subject to such terms and conditions as determined by USDA. Therefore, states are able to keep any remaining TEFAP food entitlement balance at the end of a fiscal year and place orders against it during the subsequent fiscal year. However, funds remaining at the end of the second fiscal year after which they were initially appropriated will no longer be available to USDA and will be unavailable for states to place orders against. In other words, any remaining state balance of FY 2018 TEFAP food entitlement will expire at the end of FY 2019 (September 30, 2019). Thus, state agencies should continue to make every effort to use their food entitlement in the year in which it is provided by USDA and ensure that any carryover food entitlement balance is expended by the end of the second year. Each state’s FY 2018 carryover balance available in FY 2019 was determined based on an entitlement summary report pulled from the Web-Based Supply Chain Management system on October 1, 2018.
TEFAP administrative funds provided to each state will continue to be available for only one year, the fiscal year in which they were appropriated.
Conversion of Food Funds to Administrative Funds
TEFAP state agencies have the opportunity to convert their fair-share of up to 15 percent of their food funds into TEFAP administrative funds. Accordingly, $45.9 million in TEFAP food funds are available for conversion into TEFAP administrative funds. USDA has already provided opportunities for state agencies to convert up to 15 percent of their fair share of food funds available under the three Continuing Resolutions of FY 2019. At this time, state agencies have the opportunity to convert any remaining portion of their fair-share of convertible funds. FNS Headquarters must be informed by March 29, 2019 whether TEFAP state agencies want to accept their remaining portion of the convertible $45.9 million as food funds, administrative funds, or any combination of the two.
Administrative Funds and their Conversion
The Appropriations Act includes $79.63 million in TEFAP administrative funds. Additionally, USDA has been directed to transfer $30 million in unobligated prior year balances of the Commodity Supplemental Food Program to TEFAP administrative funds. In total, $109.63 million is available for TEFAP administrative costs for FY 2019. Through February 15, 2019, per the terms of the three Continuing Resolutions in FY 2019, TEFAP received a pro-rated portion of the level of administrative funds it received in FY 2018 totaling $24,350,017. An additional 30-day allowance of administrative funds was recently made available totaling $6,545,586. This leaves $30,000,000 in transferred funds and $48,734,397 in appropriated funds to be allocated for the remainder of FY 2019. As always, TEFAP state agencies may convert any portion of their administrative funds into food funds.
FNS Headquarters must be informed by April 26, 2019 regarding what portion, if any, of their administrative funds TEFAP state agencies wish to convert to food funds.
Previously in this fiscal year, FNS provided six worksheets to TEFAP state agencies detailing administrative funding allocations under the three Continuing Resolutions of FY 2019, subsequent 30-day allowance, and two rounds of early conversions of TEFAP food funds to administrative funds. Attached, please find two additional worksheets that provide further details regarding FY 2019 TEFAP funding.
- Worksheet #9 shows each state's share of the $24,350,017 in FY 2019 TEFAP administrative funds that has been provided under the Continuing Resolutions as well as each state’s share of the $6,545,586 provided under the 30-day allowance. Finally, it shows the remaining $30,000,000 in transferred funds and the $48,734,397 in appropriated funds to be allocated under the final FY 2019 Appropriations Act, and the total of these amounts.
- Worksheet #10 shows each state's allocation of FY 2019 TEFAP food funds provided in the Food and Nutrition Act that are not convertible to administrative funds, the share of food funds that have already been converted to administrative funds, each state’s remaining share of convertible funds,each state’s FY 2018 carryover balance available in FY 2019, and the total of these amounts.
Please note all TEFAP food and administrative funds are subject to apportionment by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). We will keep you informed regarding the availability of these funds.
To review, FNS Headquarters must be informed whether TEFAP state agencies want to (a) accept their remaining portion of the $45.9 million in convertible TEFAP food funds as food funds, administrative funds, or some combination of the two by March 29, 2019; and (b) convert any portion of their administrative funds into food funds by April 26, 2019. Regional office staff will provide further guidance on applicable timeframes for submission to their offices, which will enable them to provide the information to FNS headquarters in a timely manner.