(A) Any individual who owns or operates a farm stand or participates at a farmers'
market may apply to the director for authorization to be a WIC farmer in accordance with this rule. Individuals who exclusively sell produce grown by someone else, such as a wholesale distributor, cannot be authorized for a WIC contract. The director shall authorize an applicant by entering into a contract in accordance with the criteria established under this rule. The contract shall be for a term of no more than three years. Unless otherwise provided in this rule, the contract beginning date shall be the first of June.
(B) To apply for a farmer contract, an applicant shall complete an application packet on forms prescribed by the director. The applicant shall deliver the completed application to the director by hand-delivery, U.S. mail, or overnight mail at the address indicated on the application form. It is the applicant's responsibility to obtain documentation of the director's timely receipt of the application.
(1) The completed application must be postmarked or received by the director no later than the first of February of the year for which the applicant is applying. If an application is received on or before the first of February, but the application is not complete, the director may request additional information to make the application complete or accurate. The additional information must be postmarked or received by the director no later than the first of April. If a complete application is not received by the first of April, the application shall be denied.
(2) Notwithstanding the application submission requirements set forth in paragraph (B)(1) of this rule, the director may approve a contract to add a farm stand or farmers' market site to an existing farmer contract if the farmer is in good standing with the WIC program and has not been denied a contract for the proposed site within the previous twelve months.
(C) The director shall enter into a contract with an applicant if the applicant meets all of the following criteria:
(1) The applicant has truthfully, accurately, and fully completed, signed, and timely submitted to the department an application for a contract, including the following additional documentation:
(a) Sufficient IRS documentation of his or her current federal employer identification number, if applicable. Sufficient documentation shall include a current United States internal revenue service (IRS) deposit coupon, completed IRS form W-9, letter or mailing label that contains both the IRS insignia and the applicant's federal employer identification number;
(b) Properly completed EFT form with a copy of a void check ; and
(c) Any other documentation requested by the department.
(2) The applicant or representatives of the applicant shall attend a farmer training session at the time and place set by the department .
(4) The applicant has paid in full or is current in payment of any money owed to the department.
(5) The applicant is not currently under disqualification from the WIC program, farmers' market nutrition program, or food assistance program.
(6) Upon request by the director, the applicant provides proof of any necessary local license, other regulatory approval to operate at each site specified in the application, or other documents to substantiate compliance with this rule. The director, at his or her discretion, may at any time require from any applicant or farmer additional documentation.
(7) Entering into a contract will not create a conflict of interest as defined by applicable state laws, regulations, and policies between the farmer and the WIC program or its local agencies.
(D) The director may deny an application if the applicant has provided false information in connection with its application for authorization.
(E) Except as otherwise provided in this rule, the director shall deny an application for authorization if any of the criteria specified in paragraph (C) of this rule are not met.
(F) At the director's discretion, he or she may require a farmer to accommodate an electronic transaction system which may include point of sale devices and scanners at each site capable of serving WIC participants. A farmer shall be notified at least sixty days prior to the effective date of this requirement. The director shall terminate a farmer's contract if the farmer fails to comply with this requirement.
(G) The contract does not become effective until signed by the applicant or other authorized representative and the director.