Fiscal Action Flexibility for Supply Chain Issues
On September 15, 2021, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released COVID-19 Child Nutrition Response #100: Waiver to Allow Fiscal Action Flexibility for Meal Pattern Violations Related to COVID-19 Supply Chain Disruptions Impacting School Meals in School Year 2021–22.
Based on the exceptional circumstances of the COVID-19 public health emergency and current national supply chain constraints, the USDA is granting state agencies a waiver for certain fiscal action requirements in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), the School Breakfast Program (SBP), and the NSLP Seamless Summer Option (SSO) when there is a COVID-19-related supply chain disruption.
Specifically, the USDA is allowing the California Department of Education (CDE) Nutrition Services Division (NSD) to waive the following until June 30, 2022:
- The requirement to apply fiscal action for missing food components or missing production records as detailed in Title 7, Code of Federal Regulations (7 CFR), Section 210.18(l)(2)(i); and
- The requirement to apply fiscal action for repeated violations involving milk type and vegetable subgroups as detailed in 7 CFR, Section 210.18(l)(2)(ii).
School Food Authorities (SFA) will need to keep documentation indicating a supply chain disruption occurred. Additionally, all SFAs are encouraged to apply for the meal pattern waiver and can access the NSD meal pattern flexibility request.
SFAs may also conduct emergency noncompetitive procurement(s) when an urgent need or emergency arises, such as the need to replace missing foods or paper goods with alternative sources or products quickly. Emergency noncompetitive procurement methods are a standing flexibility and do not require a waiver. For additional questions and technical assistance on emergency noncompetitive procurements, contact SFSCONTRACTS@cde.ca.gov.
For updated information, program operators are directed to visit the CDE COVID-19 Guidance for Child Nutrition Programs web page and the CDE COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions web page.
If you have any questions regarding this subject, please contact your Field Services Unit (FSU) Child Nutrition Consultant (CNC). The FSU CNC list is available in the Download Forms section of the Child Nutrition Information and Payment System under Form ID Caseload.