3701-42-06 WIC vendor responsibilities.

(A) A vendor shall comply with the requirements of this chapter of the Administrative Code.

(B) A vendor shall provide to participants and alternate shoppers only authorized supplemental foods in exchange for valid food instruments.

(1) Grocery locations may provide authorized supplemental foods including special infant formula in exchange for valid food instruments.

(2) Pharmacy locations may only provide special infant formula in exchange for valid food instruments.

(C) A vendor shall furnish all the quantities, sizes, and types of authorized supplemental food specified on the food instrument unless the participant or alternate shopper chooses less .

(D) A vendor shall offer participants and alternate shoppers the same courtesies extended to other customers, including but not limited to: providing a sales receipt and accepting store and manufacturer coupons, discount cards, or other discounts offered.

(E) A vendor shall allow participants and alternate shoppers freedom to select among the types of each authorized supplemental food recorded on the food instrument.

(F) A vendor shall accept valid food instruments presented by a participant or alternate shopper and shall:

(1) Accept a food instrument only after requiring the bearer of the food instrument to present a valid state of Ohio WIC program ID card;

(2) Total and record the prices of the authorized supplemental foods that were provided in the appropriate block on the front of the food instrument at the time of the WIC transaction;

(3) Total and record the true and accurate prices of the authorized supplemental foods that were provided in the appropriate block on the front of the food instrument.

(4) Record the date in the appropriate block on the front of the food instrument at the time of the WIC transaction;

(5) Record the true and accurate date in the appropriate block on the front of the food instrument;

(6) Complete the food instrument in ink at the time of the WIC transaction;

(7) Obtain the signature of the participant or alternate shopper in the presence of the cashier after the actual amount of sale is recorded ;

(8) Deduct the value of any manufacturer or store coupons, discount cards, or other discounts offered from the total before recording the actual amount of sale on the food instrument.

(9) Accept a food instrument only within the "valid period to redeem" indicated on the food instrument;

(10) Be responsible for all food instruments accepted or processed for payment by current and former employees or agents of the vendor. The vendor shall be responsible for the accuracy of any information submitted to the department by those employees or agents including any person or persons operating the store or pharmacy under a management agreement;

(11) Review all food instruments that were accepted to verify that the recorded amount of sale is not more than the marked or posted prices or is not more than the prices charged to other customers; and

(12) Return to the department or local WIC agency within forty-eight hours any food instrument obtained not in the ordinary course of business, or if a vendor determines that the WIC transaction was not in accordance with this chapter and does not intend to submit the food instrument for payment.

(G) A vendor shall comply with all of the following:

(1) All federal and state laws, rules, and regulations governing the WIC program, including section 17 of the "Child Nutrition Act of 1966," 80 Stat. 885, 42 U.S.C.A. 1786 , (in effect July 1, 2010), pertinent federal regulations for the WIC program including 7 C.F.R. part 246, (in effect July 1, 2010) and this chapter;

(2) All federal and state laws pertaining to nondiscrimination, including but not limited to Title VI of the "Civil Rights Act of 1964," 78 Stat. 241, 42 U.S.C.A. 2000(d) (in effect July 1 2010), pertinent regulations adopted thereunder, and 7 C.F.R. parts 15, 15A, and 15B (in effect July 1, 2010); and

(3) All federal, state and local criminal laws either felony or misdemeanor, pertaining to the WIC program or any other FNS program.

(H) The department or local WIC agency or its designee may conduct announced and unannounced inspections of a vendor's or applicant's location at any time during business hours to determine compliance with WIC program requirements. The vendor or applicant and its employees and agents shall cooperate with the department or local WIC agency or its designee conducting an inspection and shall provide access to records pertinent to the WIC program, including WIC transactions, shelf price records, and inventory records. The department or local WIC agency or its designee may confiscate food instruments that were improperly transacted.

(I) A vendor shall be subject to audit by the department and FNS for the time period covering any present or previous WIC authorization.

(1) A vendor shall maintain all records of purchases, gross sales receipts, and invoices for all authorized supplemental foods for a period of not less than three years after the end of the federal fiscal year, and upon request, shall make available the records to the department and FNS.

(2) Upon request, a vendor also shall make available to the department and FNS all food instruments that are stored at any of its locations or that are otherwise under the vendor's control.

(3) A vendor shall keep and make available to the department access to all WIC program documents, including price surveys, disbursement, and redemption documents for three years after the end of the federal fiscal year (October first to September thirtieth) to which they pertain. If any litigation, claim, negotiation, audit, or other action involving the records has begun during the three-year period, the vendor shall keep the records until all issues are resolved.

(J) A vendor shall complete the department's price survey for each location and submit it to the department within fifteen calendar days from receipt of the request from the department. Prices recorded on the survey shall reflect the non-sale price on the day that the survey was completed.

(K) A vendor shall respond in writing within fifteen calendar days after receiving a request from the department for verification of ownership of the business entity or locations, verification of authorized supplemental food purchases and sales, or other documentation.

(L) A vendor shall maintain current status as an authorized vendor under the food assistance program. This paragraph shall not apply to a pharmacy vendor.

(M) A vendor shall send one or more representatives from each location to all required training sessions scheduled by the local WIC agency or the department. A vendor shall inform and train cashiers, other store personnel, and agents on WIC program requirements.

(N) A vendor shall maintain the appropriate notice of WIC authorization issued under paragraph (B) of rule 3701-42-04 of the Administrative Code in a prominent place at each location.

(O) A vendor shall not do any of the following:

(1) Exchange food instruments for cash, firearms, ammunition, explosives, or controlled substances as defined in 21 U.S.C. 802 (in effect July 1, 2010);

(2) Exchange food instruments for alcohol or alcoholic beverages or tobacco products;

(3) Exchange food instruments for credit, including rainchecks or non-food items.

(4) Provide refunds or permit exchanges for authorized supplemental food except for an exchange of an identical authorized supplemental food item when the original item is defective, spoiled, or has exceeded its "sell by," "best if used by," or other date limiting the sale or use of the food item.

An identical authorized supplemental food item means the exact brand and size as the original item obtained and returned by the participant or alternate shopper;

(5) Provide the participant or alternate shopper with any monetary change from a WIC transaction;

(6) Require a participant or alternate shopper to exchange his or her selection of authorized supplemental foods ;

(7) Redeem food instruments for authorized supplemental foods not received by the participants or alternate shoppers;

(8) Redeem food instruments in which the recorded amount of sale is more than the marked or posted prices or more than the prices charged other customers ;

(9) Charge a participant or alternate shopper for authorized supplemental foods obtained with a coupon or seek restitution from a participant or alternate shopper for a food instrument not paid or partially paid by the department;

(10) Charge sales tax for the purchase of authorized supplemental foods;

(11) Receive, transact, redeem, or seek reimbursement from the department for a food instrument accepted by another person or location, whether or not authorized as a vendor under rule 3701-42-03 of the Administrative Code;

(12) Redeem a food instrument for a specific authorized supplemental food item which exceeds the store's documented inventory of that authorized supplemental food item for a specific period of time;

(13) Redeem a food instrument for unauthorized food items;

(14) Redeem a food instrument for foods in excess of the authorized supplemental food items listed on the food instruments;

(15) Provide home delivery of authorized supplemental foods except as otherwise provided in this chapter of the Administrative Code; or

(16) Accept a food instrument on which the preprinted information has been changed or is missing.

(17) Redeem a food instrument that contains a signature other than that of the participant or alternate shopper.

Effective: 04/01/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 10/18/2010 and 04/01/2016
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 3701.132
Rule Amplifies: 3701.132
Prior Effective Dates: 1/10/1992 (Emer.), 4/12/92, 4/1 94, 1/26/96, 6/7/99, 6/21/04, 3/20/06