News

South Carolina Selected by USDA for SNAP Integrity Grant

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Danielle Jones
Danielle.Jones@dss.sc.gov
803-898-7602

 South Carolina Selected by USDA for SNAP Integrity Grant

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced over $5.5 million in grants to state partners as part of ongoing efforts to enhance the program integrity of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

USDA is providing these SNAP Fraud Framework Implementation Grants to combat recipient fraud as well as more than half a million in Income Verification Grants to help states ensure SNAP households receive the accurate amount of SNAP benefits. 

The purpose of the SNAP Fraud Framework Implementation Grant Program is to support state agency efforts to improve and expand recipient fraud prevention, detection and investigation efforts using the procedures, ideas and practices outlined in the SNAP Fraud Framework. 

South Carolina was one of nine states selected as a participating jurisdiction after a competitive grant process.  South Carolina was awarded approximately $683,000 for the two-year grant. 

South Carolina’s grant proposal was to acquire data analytics software company, PONDERA, to better determine fraud in the eligibility system.  DSS has relied on eligibility staff members to provide the bulk of the claim referrals.  However, going forward the Benefit Integrity staff will have the opportunity to actively view the highest risk, highest value referrals on the frontend. 

Along with data analyzation, the software also will allow the Benefit Integrity staff to actively build a paperless case from start to finish.  The staff can send a suspected fraud from DSS’ Office of Inspector General (OIG), OIG to prosecution, electronically instead of the need for continually printing materials when new material is discovered. 

“USDA’s commitment to improving the integrity of SNAP is never ending, and states are crucial partners in that effort,” said Brandon Lipps, Deputy Under Secretary for USDA’s Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services. “The grants announced today will foster new and expanded strategies for reducing fraud and payment errors, protecting taxpayer dollars and ensuring public confidence in this program.”

In South Carolina, the Department of Social Services (DSS) administers the SNAP program to help families supplement household food budgets.  To receive SNAP benefits, you must apply online at dss.sc.gov or by application at a local county DSS office.  SNAP recipients must meet certain requirements including resource and income limits.

 

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Do you have a complaint regarding services being provided to a child by a state agency? Please submit your complaint by phone (1-800-206-1957) or an electronic submission form here with the South Carolina Department of Children's Advocacy.