H.R. 6567 (112th): State Nutrition Assistance Flexibility Act of 2012

112th Congress, 2011–2013. Text as of Oct 02, 2012 (Introduced).

Status & Summary | PDF | Source: GPO

I

112th CONGRESS

2d Session

H. R. 6567

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

October 2, 2012

(for himself, Mr. Broun of Georgia, Mr. Chabot, Mr. Jordan, Mr. King of Iowa, Mr. Bishop of Utah, and Mr. Westmoreland) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Agriculture, and in addition to the Committees on Ways and Means and Education and the Workforce, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned

A BILL

To replace certain Federal nutrition programs with a block grant to the States, and for other purposes.

1.

Short title; table of contents

(a)

Short title

This Act may be cited as the State Nutrition Assistance Flexibility Act of 2012.

(b)

Table of contents

The table of contents of this Act is as follows:

Sec. 1. Short title; table of contents.

Sec. 2. Purpose.

Sec. 3. Grants to States.

Sec. 4. Administrative and fiscal accountability.

Sec. 5. Nondiscrimination provisions.

Sec. 6. Definitions.

Sec. 7. Report on reduction of Federal administrative expenditures.

Sec. 8. Repeals.

Sec. 9. Severability.

Sec. 10. Effective date.

2.

Purpose

The purpose of this Act is to provide Federal financial assistance to the States, in the form of a single grant, to allow the States maximum flexibility in providing, and financing the provision of, supplemental food and nutrition assistance.

3.

Grants to States

(a)

In general

Subject to the requirements of this Act, each State that meets the requirements of subsection (d) is entitled to receive from the Secretary of the Treasury a grant for each quarter of fiscal years 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, and 2022, in an amount that is equal to 25 percent of the sum of—

(1)

the total amount of funds received by a State; and

(2)

with funds not received by a State, the dollar value of in-kind benefits (as determined by the Secretary of Agriculture) provided to residents of such State;

under the provisions listed in section 8 for fiscal year 2008.
(b)

Appropriation

Out of any money in the Treasury of the United States not otherwise appropriated, there are appropriated for fiscal years 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022 such sums as are necessary for grants under this subsection (a).

(c)

Requirements relating to intergovernmental financing

The Secretary of the Treasury shall make the transfer of funds under grants under subsection (a) directly to each State in accordance with the requirements of section 6503 of title 31, United States Code.

(d)

State requirements

In order to receive a grant under subsection (a), the Governor of a State shall certify to the Secretary of the Treasury that the supplemental food and nutrition assistance that will be provided by the State using such grant will include—

(1)

as conditions of receiving supplemental food and nutrition assistance, work requirements that are at least as strict as the work requirements which a State is required to impose under a State program funded under part A of title IV of the Social Security Act on recipients of assistance under such a program; and

(2)

limitations on the eligible uses of benefits that are at least as restrictive as the limitations in place for the supplemental nutrition assistance program established under the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 (7 U.S.C. 2011 et seq.) as of May 31, 2012.

(e)

Expenditure of funds

(1)

In general

Except as provided in paragraph (2), amounts received by a State under subsection (a) for any fiscal year shall be expended by the State in such fiscal year or in the succeeding fiscal year.

(2)

Use of Rainy Day Fund permitted

Of the amounts received by a State under subsection (a), the State may set aside, in a separate account, such amounts as the State deems necessary to provide, without fiscal limitation, supplemental food and nutrition assistance and services for indigent individuals during—

(A)

periods of unexpectedly high rates of unemployment; or

(B)

periods related to circumstances that are not described in subparagraph (A) and that cause unexpected increases in the need for such assistance and services for such individuals.

(3)

Funds remaining after fiscal year 2022

If, after 2022, a State has funds in the account under paragraph (2), the State may only expend such funds if such funds are used in a manner that is permitted under subsection (f), as such subsection is in effect on September 30, 2022.

(f)

Use of funds

A State may only use the amounts received under subsection (a) as follows:

(1)

General purpose

For the purpose under section 2, except that nothing in this Act shall be construed as limiting the flexibility of a State to determine which providers of such assistance and services qualify to receive payment from a grant made to the State under subsection (a).

(2)

Authority to use portion of Federal assistance for other welfare-related programs

(A)

In general

Subject to the limit under subparagraph (B), to carry out a State program pursuant to any or all of the following provisions of law:

(i)

Part A of title IV of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 601 et seq.).

(ii)

Section 1616 of such Act (42 U.S.C. 1382e).

(B)

Limitation

A State may not use more than 30 percent of the amount received under subsection (a) for a fiscal year to carry out a State program, or programs, under subparagraph (A).

(C)

Requirements on funds

Any amounts that are used under subparagraph (A)—

(i)

shall not be subject to any of the requirements of subsection (e) or section 5; and

(ii)

shall be subject to—

(I)

the audit requirements under section 4; and

(II)

any requirements that apply to Federal funds provided directly for such State program.

(g)

No funding for illegal aliens

Except as provided under this Act, no funds appropriated in this Act may be used to provide supplemental food and nutrition assistance to an alien who is not lawfully admitted for permanent residence or otherwise permanently residing in the United States under color of law.

(h)

Nonentitlement

Nothing in this Act shall be construed as providing an individual with an entitlement to supplemental food and nutrition assistance under this Act.

4.

Administrative and fiscal accountability

(a)

Audits

(1)

Contract with approved auditing entity

Not later than October 1, 2013, and annually thereafter, a State shall contract with an approved auditing entity (as defined under paragraph (3)(B)) for purposes of conducting an audit under paragraph (2) (with respect to the fiscal year ending September 30 of such year).

(2)

Audit requirement

Under a contract under paragraph (1), an approved auditing entity shall conduct an audit of the expenditures or transfers made by a State from amounts received under a grant under this section 3(a) with respect to the fiscal year which such audit covers, to determine the extent to which such expenditures and transfers were expended in accordance with this Act.

(3)

Entity conducting audit

(A)

In general

With respect to a State, the audit under paragraph (2) shall be conducted by an approved auditing entity in accordance with generally accepted auditing principles.

(B)

Approved auditing entity

For purposes of this section, the term approved auditing entity means, with respect to a State, an entity that is—

(i)

approved by the Secretary of the Treasury;

(ii)

approved by the chief executive officer of the State; and

(iii)

independent of any Federal, State, or local agency.

(4)

Submission of audit

Not later than December 31, 2013, and annually thereafter, a State shall submit the results of the audit under paragraph (2) (with respect to the fiscal year ending on September 30 of such year) to the State legislature and to the Secretary of the Treasury.

(5)

Additional accounting requirements

The provisions of chapter 75 of title 31, United States Code, shall apply to the audit requirements of this section.

(b)

Reimbursement and penalty

If, through an audit conducted under subsection (a), an approved auditing entity finds that any amounts paid to a State under a grant under section 3(a) were not expended in accordance with this Act—

(1)

the State shall pay to the Treasury of the United States any such amount, plus 10 percent of such amount as a penalty; or

(2)

the Secretary of the Treasury shall offset such amount plus the 10 percent penalty against any other amount in any other fiscal year that the State may be entitled to receive under a grant under section 3(a).

(c)

Annual reporting requirements

(1)

In general

Not later than January 31, 2014, and annually thereafter, each State shall submit to the Secretary of the Treasury and the State legislature a report on the activities carried out by the State during the most recently completed fiscal year with funds received by the State under a grant under section 3(a) for such fiscal year.

(2)

Content

A report under paragraph (1) shall, with respect to a fiscal year—

(A)

contain the results of the audit conducted by an approved auditing entity for a State for such fiscal year, in accordance with the requirements of subsection (a) of this section;

(B)

specify the amount of the grant made to the State under section 3(a) that is used to carry out a program under section 3(f)(2); and

(C)

be in such form and contain such other information as the State determines is necessary to provide—

(i)

an accurate description of the activities conducted by the State for the purpose described under section 2 and any other use of funds permitted under subsections (d) and (e) of section 3; and

(ii)

a complete record of the purposes for which amounts were expended in accordance with this Act.

(3)

Conformity with accounting principles

Any financial information in the report under paragraph (1) shall be prepared and reported in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles, including the provisions of chapter 75 of title 31, United States Code.

(4)

Public availability

A State shall make copies of the reports required under this section available on a public Web site and shall make copies available in other formats upon request.

(d)

Failure To comply with requirements

The Secretary of the Treasury shall not make any payment to a State under a grant authorized by section 3(a)

(1)

if an audit for a State is not submitted as required under subsection (a), during the period between the date such audit is due and the date on which such audit is submitted; or

(2)

if a State fails to submit a report as required under subsection (c), during the period between the date such report is due and the date on which such report is submitted.

(e)

Administrative supervision and oversight

(1)

Limited role for Secretary of the Treasury and the Attorney General

(A)

Treasury

The authority of the Secretary of the Treasury under this Act is limited to—

(i)

promulgating regulations, issuing rules, or publishing guidance documents to the extent necessary for purposes of implementing subsections (a)(3)(B), (b), and (d);

(ii)

making quarterly payments to the States under grants under this Act in accordance with section 3(a);

(iii)

approving entities under subsection (a)(3)(B) for purposes of the audits required under subsection (a);

(iv)

withholding payment to a State of a grant under subsection (d) or offsetting a payment of such a grant to a State under subsection (b); and

(v)

exercising the authority relating to nondiscrimination that is specified in section 5(b).

(B)

Attorney general

The authority of the Attorney General to supervise the amounts received by a State under section 3(a) is limited to the authority under section 5(c).

(2)

Federal supervision

(A)

In general

Except as provided under paragraph (1), an administrative officer, employee, department, or agency of the United States (including the Secretaries of Agriculture and Health and Human Services) may not—

(i)

supervise—

(I)

the amounts received by the States under section 3(a); or

(II)

the use of such amounts by the States; or

(ii)

promulgate regulations or issue rules in accordance with this Act.

(B)

Limitation on Secretaries of Agriculture and Health and Human Services

The Secretaries of Agriculture and Health and Human Services shall have no authority over any provision of this Act.

(f)

Reservation of state powers

Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit the power of a State, including the power of a State to pursue civil and criminal penalties under State law against any individual or entity that misuses, or engages in fraud or abuse related to the funds provided to a State under this Act.

5.

Nondiscrimination provisions

(a)

Nondiscrimination against individuals

No individual shall be excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, or subjected to discrimination under, any program or activity funded in whole or in part with amounts paid to a State under this section 3(a) on the basis of such individual’s—

(1)

disability under section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 794);

(2)

sex under title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (20 U.S.C. 1681 et seq.); or

(3)

race, color, or national origin under title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000d et seq.).

(b)

Compliance

(1)

In general

If the Secretary of the Treasury determines that a State or an entity that has received funds from amounts paid to a State under a grant under section 3(a) has failed to comply with a provision of law referred to in subsection (a), the Secretary of the Treasury shall notify the chief executive officer of the State of such failure to comply and shall request that such chief executive officer secure such compliance.

(2)

Refusal to secure compliance

If, not later than 60 days after receiving notification under paragraph (1), the chief executive officer of a State fails or refuses to secure compliance with the provision of law referred to in such notification, the Secretary of the Treasury may—

(A)

refer the matter to the Attorney General with a recommendation that an appropriate civil action be instituted; or

(B)

exercise the powers and functions provided under section 505 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 794a), title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (20 U.S.C. 1681 et seq.), or title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000d et seq.) (as applicable).

(c)

Civil actions

If a matter is referred to the Attorney General under subsection (b)(2)(A), or the Attorney General has reason to believe that a State or entity has failed to comply with a provision of law referred to in subsection (a), the Attorney General may bring a civil action in an appropriate district court of the United States for such relief as may be appropriate, including injunctive relief.

6.

Definitions

For purposes of this Act:

(1)

Supplemental food and nutrition assistance

The term supplemental food and nutrition assistance shall be defined by a State with respect to use of such term for purposes of the application of this Act to the State.

(2)

State

The term State has the meaning given the term in section 3 of the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 (7 U.S.C. 2012) as of May 31, 2012.

7.

Report on reduction of Federal administrative expenditures

Beginning not later than October 31, 2013, and annually thereafter until October 31, 2022, the Secretaries of Agriculture and Health and Human Services, in consultation with the Secretary of the Treasury, shall submit a report to the Committee on Energy and Commerce in the House of Representatives and the Finance Committee in the Senate containing a description of the total reduction in Federal expenditures required to administer and provide oversight for the programs to provide supplemental food and nutrition assistance to indigent individuals under this Act, compared to the expenditures required to administer and provide oversight for the programs listed in section 8, as such programs were in effect on September 30, 2012.

8.

Repeals

The following provisions are repealed:

(1)

The Emergency Food Assistance Act of 1983 (7 U.S.C. 7501 et seq.).

(2)

Section 5 of the Agriculture and Consumer Protection Act of 1973, (commonly known as the commodity supplemental food program) (7 U.S.C. 612c note).

(3)

Section 4402 of Public Law 107–171 (relating to the seniors farmers’ market nutrition program) (7 U.S.C. 3007).

(4)

The Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 (7 U.S.C. 2011 et seq.).

(5)

Section 19 of the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act (42 U.S.C. 1769a).

9.

Severability

If any provision of this Act, or the application of such provision to any person or circumstance, is found to be unconstitutional, the remainder of this Act, or the application of that provision to other persons or circumstances, shall not be affected.

10.

Effective date

This Act and the amendments made by this Act shall take effect with respect to items and services furnished on or after October 1, 2012.