The Impact of State­Level Administrative Procedures on SNAP Participation Rates Among Eligible Individuals

Client: (Research)
Faculty: Tod Mijanovich
Team: Katie Beal, Rebecca Halleran,Emma Hersh,CarrieWolfson
Year: 2011
Nearly one in eight individuals is enrolled in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as the Food Stamp Program. However, only one in three eligible individuals actually receives benefits. Participation rates vary widely across states, ranging from 46 percent in Wyoming to 94 percent in Maine. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) allows state agencies flexibility in deciding the administrative procedures they use to enroll beneficiaries in the program. Examples of procedures include finger imaging and facetoface interview requirements. Prior research suggests that certain state level procedures may unduly burden individuals who have the greatest need for food assistance. The Capstone team used individuallevel data from the Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) and statelevel policies from 2001, 2004, and 2008 to analyze the impact of state administrative procedures on SNAP participation.