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Fair Hearing Policy and Procedures in the CSFP

Nutrition Services Division Management Bulletin

Purpose: Policy

To: Commodity Supplemental Food Program Local Agencies

Number: USDA-CSFP-09-2012

Attention: Commodity Supplemental Food Program Administrator

Date: August 2012

Subject: Fair Hearing Policy and Procedures in the Commodity Supplemental Food Program

Reference: Title 7, Code of Federal Regulations, sections 247.15, 247.17, and 247.33

This Management Bulletin (MB) disseminates information regarding the fair hearing process for agencies administering the Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP).

As outlined in Title 7, Code of Federal Regulations (7 CFR), sections 247.15 and 247.17; it is the responsibility of the Local Agency (LA) to alert CSFP applicants and participants in writing that they are no longer eligible for the CSFP. The notification of ineligibility must include:

The notification letter of ineligibility or discontinuance must be provided at least 15 days before the effective day of discontinuance. If an applicant or participant does not agree with the decision of ineligibility or discontinuance, they may appeal the decision through a fair hearing process in accordance with 7 CFR, Section 247.33. An appeal may be made verbally or in writing, and a request for a fair hearing may be arranged at the LA headquarters office. The LA must ensure that the applicants and participants understand their right to appeal any decision through the fair hearing process.

Commodity Supplemental Food Program Fair Hearing Policy and Procedures

All LAs must have an established fair hearing process. The CSFP Fair Hearing policy and procedures must include, at a minimum, the following provisions:

Fair Hearing – Process
Fair Hearing – Decision

A decision must be made and given to the applicant or participant, in writing, within 45 days of the request for the hearing, noting the facts, evidence and laws, and/or regulations supporting the decision. The LA must also provide the Nutrition Services Division a written copy of the hearing official’s decision within 30 days of the fair hearing.

Fair Hearing – Record Maintenance

In addition to the hearing decision, a transcript or recording of the testimony or an official report of all that transpired at the hearing along with all exhibits, papers, and requests made must be maintained by the LA and must be available for public inspection and copying, in accordance with 7 CFR, sections 247.29(a) and 247.36(b).

If you have any questions regarding this MB, please contact Jacqueline Henderson, Manager, Distribution and Processing Unit, by phone at 916‑324-9758 or by e-mail at

Questions:   Nutrition Services Division | 800-952-5609
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