Lynne A. Valenti
Cabinet Secretary

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September 15, 2014

Department of Social Services’ Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Recognized for Exceptional Administration

PIERRE, S.D. – For the 30th consecutive year, the South Dakota Department of Social Services' (DSS) Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) has been recognized nationally for its quality in administration by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

South Dakota will receive a total of $533,848 in funding for being the first in the nation for the lowest case and procedural error rate and third in the nation for the lowest payment error rate in federal fiscal year (FFY) 2013. The national average case and procedural payment error rate during FFY 2013 was 25.25 percent; South Dakota's rate was 2.54. The national average payment error rate for FFY 2013 was 3.20 percent; South Dakota's rate was 0.99.

“DSS staff who work with the program continue to provide exemplary public service through accurate and effective administration of the program,” stated Department of Social Services’ Secretary Lynne Valenti. “This allows the Department to draw down further federal dollars, which helps enhance services to the citizens of our state.”

The case and procedural error rate measures the correctness of a state agency's action to deny an application or suspend or terminate the benefits of a participating household. The rate also measures whether a state agency correctly determined a household's eligibility in terms of the state's compliance with federal procedural requirements. The payment error rate measures the accuracy of the state agency in determining the correct benefit amount.

South Dakota has received over $18.3 million in performance money from the USDA for accuracy and timeliness in providing SNAP benefits to state citizens. The measures of performance are directly related to program integrity and customer service.

In July 2014, the SNAP program served 100,785 individuals, of which 47,896 were children, with an average monthly benefit of $272.00 per household.

The Department of Social Services administers the SNAP program which helps low-income South Dakotans buy the food they need to stay healthy while they work to regain financial independence. Benefits are provided to supplement the recipient’s food budget. The amount of benefits a household receives is based on its size, income and allowable expenses.

For more information about SNAP, call 1-877-999-5612 or visit