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DHHS mum on food stamp backlog as deadline looms

The Associated Press

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RALEIGH — Officials at the state Department of Health and Human Services are declining to say whether they have successfully cleared a backlog of food stamp applications as a federal deadline approaches.

DHHS Secretary Aldona Wos is expected to announce Tuesday whether her agency met the deadline.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture gave North Carolina until Monday to process a backlog of more than 23,000 food stamp applications and renewals that had been pending for more than 90 days. The applications are supposed to be processed by law within 30 days. Failure to meet the deadline could result in the loss of millions in federal funding.

The state has struggled for months to process a backlog of food stamp applications resulting from a faulty update with its NC FAST software.