Department of Human Services

Food Stamp Online  Policy Manual

Continuing Responsibilities




Food Stamp Table of Contents


Certain changes are initiated by the Department or the Federal Government which may affect the entire caseload or significant portions of the caseload.  These changes include annual adjustments to the income eligibility standards and various deductions, adjustments to Families First standards and payment levels, Social Security and SSI benefit adjustments, and other changes in the eligibility criteria based on legislative or regulatory actions.


(1)   Federal Food Stamp Program Changes


These include federal adjustments to eligibility standards, allotments and deductions.  These adjustments shall go into effect for all households at a specific point in time.


(2)   Food Stamp Program Changes


State adjustments to the utility standards shall be effective for all issuances in the month specified by the State Office.


Although a notice of disposition is not required prior to these adjustments, appropriate notices are generated through the ACCENT system to all affected food stamp households.


(3)   Mass Changes in Public Assistance


When the Department makes an overall adjustment to Families First payments, corresponding adjustments in the household’s food stamp benefits shall be handled as a mass change.  The ACCENT system will automatically adjust most Families First and Food Stamp cases when there is a mass change.  However, there are instances in which the case will not be automatically mass changed, but will be listed on an exception report, and must be handled by the caseworker.


If a household requests a fair hearing, benefits shall be continued at the former level only if the issue being appealed is that food stamp eligibility or benefits were improperly computed and not that benefits are reduced because of the mass change.


Glossary of Terms


Food Stamp Table of Contents