Each year, WIC state agencies administering the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) are required by 7 CFR 246.12(j)(5) to submit to FNS an annual summary of the results of their vendor monitoring efforts in order to provide Congress, senior FNS officials, as well as the general public, assurance that every reasonable effort is being made to ensure integrity in the WIC program. The number of WIC state agencies in fiscal year 2020 is 89. This includes 50 geographic state agencies, 33 state agencies operated by Indian tribal organizations, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and the Virgin Islands. Through FY 2021, states report compliance and monitoring data in The Integrity Profile (TIP) system. That system is being replaced with an upgraded, web-based system called Food Delivery Portal (FDP). Starting FY 2022, all WIC state agencies will use the upgraded web-based system.
The existing TIP system was designed and developed using the WIC program requirements current as of 2005. Since 2005, there have been changes to the requirements, policies, technology, and guidance that the current system cannot support. It is critical that FNS implements a more robust data collection system to align with current security protocols and compliance guidance, support data storage and web components, ensure cost effectiveness, allow for more data-driven decision-making through increased data analytic functionality, enhance FNS reporting capabilities, reduce grantee burden through automated calculations and consolidated reporting, and add data validation features to reduce reporting errors. With this update, the TIP system will be replaced with the Food Delivery Portal (FDP).
The TIP system currently collects data via three automated forms: FNS-698 Profile of Integrity Practices and Procedures (PIPP) Report, FNS-699 The Integrity Profile (TIP) Report, and FNS-700 Vendor Record. Revisions and consolidations in data collection in the FDP will eliminate these physical forms for the annual collection, instead allowing each state agency to provide updates using FDP. The screens in FDP provide a more flexible method of data capture, that focuses on the data that has changed for the year rather than recapturing all data elements each time. As a part of the upgrade effort, existing data in the TIP system will be migrated to the new FDP.
There is an increase in the burden hours because FNS intends to seek feedback from the state agencies on the system. However, the responses for this collection will decrease as the FNS program needs have changed, and Seneca Nation no longer administers WIC. The state agency is currently required to generate a complete data package in TIP each year for each vendor. The current system requires each state agency to submit data for all of its vendors within a single file. The proposed changes for FDP allow each state agency to enter the majority of its vendor information once and then only update the fields that have changed within the year, reducing the data entry and monitoring burden. There is no recordkeeping burden associated with this information collection request.