Policy Memo 123H

DOH-CACFP: Number 123H (09/08) [Replaces Number 107H (10/05)]

TO: All CACFP Sponsoring Organizations of Family Day Care Homes

FROM: Jeanne Culver, State Director, Child and Adult Care Food Program

SUBJECT: Household Contacts in CACFP

I. Purpose and Scope

  1. The purpose of this memorandum is to define the circumstances and procedures under which the state agency (CACFP) and sponsoring organizations are required to contact households for verification of enrollment and attendance in family day care homes.
  2. This requirement was issued in the 2nd interim federal regulation governing CACFP that was published on September 1, 2004. CACFP sponsoring organizations received a copy of this rule with policy memorandum DOH-CACFP 101H (01/05), CACFP 2nd Interim Federal Regulations: Improving Management and Program Integrity.

II. Background Information

  1. Effective immediately, sponsoring organizations will be required to conduct household contacts as a follow-up to monitoring visits or provider record reviews.
    1. Household contacts must be conducted when a provider review reveals any of the following conditions:
      • Meal count records exceed the maximum number of allowable meals by more than 10%
      • Attendance on the day of the monitoring visit is 25% higher or lower than attendance shown on records for any other day of the month prior to the review day, unless the provider has a plausible explanation for the variation (e.g. school closing, field trip)
      • The second time providers are not found at home at the time of an attempted monitoring visit
      • Providers claim more than one full shift of care
    2. To conduct household contacts, the sponsoring organization will send a letter, such as the enclosed sample household contact letter, to parents or guardians of children shown in attendance in the family day care home. The letter will request verification that the child is enrolled in the day care home and that they attended during the dates specified. The household will be asked to return the letter directly to the sponsoring organization.
    3. If a parent does not respond to the initial letter, the sponsoring organization must send the household a second letter, or contact them by telephone.
    4. If parental responses differ from the provider's enrollment, attendance, or meal count records, the sponsoring organization must:
      • notify the provider of the discrepancy,
      • provide technical assistance to the provider to insure that they understand how to collect, evaluate and maintain records,
      • adjust the claim for the claiming month, and
      • fully evaluate those records during the next scheduled monitoring visit.
    5. The sponsor should implement the provider serious deficiency process if they feel that the household contact findings warrant this action. Details on the serious deficiency process were provided to all sponsors attending the spring 2003 Homes Sponsor Training. The procedures and sample forms are also available on the CACFP website at www.nyhealth.gov/nutrition.
    6. All contacts and responses must be documented by the sponsoring organization and maintained on file for at least three years plus the current federal fiscal year.
  2. Under certain circumstances, CACFP may contact the households of children enrolled in family day care homes to verify enrollment and attendance. In general, household contacts will be made to follow-up on administrative review findings identified during a provider visit. Household contacts may be conducted when a provider review reveals any of the following:
    1. Attendance on the day of the review is significantly higher or lower than attendance on any of the five operating days prior to the review day unless the provider has a plausible explanation for the variation (e.g. school closing, field trip)
    2. There is any reason to believe that a provider's enrollment, attendance, and/or meal count records are fraudulent.

III. Summary of Changes

The 2nd interim federal regulations published on September 1, 2004 require state agencies to establish systems for the state agency and sponsoring organizations to use in conducting household contacts. This memorandum outlines the circumstances in which household contacts will be made as well as the procedures to use in making these contacts.

Enclosure: Sample Household Contact Letter