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Decision Number
Termination of CACFP
Rhonda Riggs
West Central Development Corp
Full Text

Appellant runs a child daycare home out of her residence in Missouri Valley, Iowa. She's participated in the Child & Adult Care Food Program for a little less than one year. CACFP is a federal program that provides reimbursement for meals and snacks provided to children in daycare homes and centers. The home must be supervised by a sponsoring organization and the sponsor in this case is the Appellee. Andrea and Troy are the minor children of Barbara G. There is no dispute that Barbara G. liberally used two childcare providers, both of whom are sponsored by West Central. There is also no dispute that Barbara G. left her children with the providers for extended periods of time. The other childcare provider is Penny Allen.In the course of a routine parent survey, West Central discovered that both Ms. Riggs and Ms. Allen requested reimbursement for some of the same meals and snacks served to Andrea and Troy on five days in August 2004.

Barbara G. provided a written statement to West Central that her children were in the care of Ms. Allen at the times Ms. Allen claimed for August 16, 17, 18, 26, and 27. Based on the written statement of Barbara G. and based on its survey of all parents with children under the care of Ms. Allen, West Central concluded that Ms. Allen kept "very accurate" records of attendance of the children at her daycare. Therefore, West Central determined that Ms. Riggs had filed the false claims for reimbursement. On or about October 18, 2004, West Central notified Ms. Riggs of its intention to terminate her CACFP participation.

CACFP is a program created by the Agricultural Risk Protection Act, 42 U.S.C. ? 1766. That Act and its regulations require that daycare homes operate under the auspices of a sponsoring organization. 7 C.F.R. 226.18(b). Congress specifically authorized the sponsors to determine whether daycare homes should be terminated for cause and to act accordingly. 7 C.F.R. 226.16(l)(1). Thus, because the sponsor has statutory authoriza-tion to terminate daycare homes for cause, we review for abuse of discretion. Iowa Code section 17A.19(11)(c); ABC Disposal Systems, Inc. v. Iowa Department of Natural Resources, 681 N.W.2d 569 (Iowa 2004). The regulations at 7 C.F.R. 226.6 enumerate reasons why a daycare home may be terminated from CACFP. Being cited as "seriously deficient" is one cause for termination. Submission of false claims for meal reimbursement is a "serious deficiency," and a reason for termination from CACFP. 7 C.F.R. 226.16(l)(2)(ii). The issue here is not whether Andrea and Troy were in Ms. Riggs' care at all on the days in question. They may very well have been at her daycare for part of the time during the 16th, 17th, 18th, and/or 26th of August. However, they were not present the entirety of the times Ms. Riggs reported, including for meals on those four dates for which she claimed reimbursement.

A home provider is required to be fiscally accountable to the public for the funds s/he receives through the program. Ms. Riggs' statements to this agency that she "must have" served the disputed meals to Andrea and Troy because the children "were always" at her daycare is not indicative of the kind of fiscal management demanded by the CACFP laws and regulations.

That the termination of Ms. Riggs from CACFP was affirmed