Each school year, the state must pay participants in the national school lunch program the amount of 12.5 cents for each full paid and free student lunch and 52.5 cents for each reduced-price lunch served to students.
A school district, charter school, nonpublic school, or other participant in the national school lunch program shall apply to the department for this payment on forms provided by the department.
The commissioner must post on the department's website eligibility criteria and application information for nonprofit organizations interested in applying to the commissioner for approval as a multisite sponsoring organization under the federal Child and Adult Care Food Program. The posted criteria and information must inform interested nonprofit organizations about:
(1) the criteria the commissioner uses to approve or disapprove an application, including how an applicant demonstrates financial viability for the Minnesota program, among other criteria;
(2) the commissioner's process and time line for notifying an applicant when its application is approved or disapproved and, if the application is disapproved, the explanation the commissioner provides to the applicant; and
(3) any appeal or other recourse available to a disapproved applicant.
(a) The expenses described in this subdivision must be recorded as provided in this subdivision.
(b) In each district, the expenses for a school food service program for pupils must be attributed to a school food service fund. Under a food service program, the school food service may prepare or serve milk, meals, or snacks in connection with school or community service activities.
(c) Revenues and expenditures for food service activities must be recorded in the food service fund. The costs of processing applications, accounting for meals, preparing and serving food, providing kitchen custodial services, and other expenses involving the preparing of meals or the kitchen section of the lunchroom may be charged to the food service fund or to the general fund of the district. The costs of lunchroom supervision, lunchroom custodial services, lunchroom utilities, and other administrative costs of the food service program must be charged to the general fund.
That portion of superintendent and fiscal manager costs that can be documented as attributable to the food service program may be charged to the food service fund provided that the school district does not employ or contract with a food service director or other individual who manages the food service program, or food service management company. If the cost of the superintendent or fiscal manager is charged to the food service fund, the charge must be at a wage rate not to exceed the statewide average for food service directors as determined by the department.
(d) Capital expenditures for the purchase of food service equipment must be made from the general fund and not the food service fund, unless the restricted balance in the food service fund at the end of the last fiscal year is greater than the cost of the equipment to be purchased.
(e) If the condition set out in paragraph (d) applies, the equipment may be purchased from the food service fund.
(f) If a deficit in the food service fund exists at the end of a fiscal year, and the deficit is not eliminated by revenues from food service operations in the next fiscal year, then the deficit must be eliminated by a permanent fund transfer from the general fund at the end of that second fiscal year. However, if a district contracts with a food service management company during the period in which the deficit has accrued, the deficit must be eliminated by a payment from the food service management company.
(g) Notwithstanding paragraph (f), a district may incur a deficit in the food service fund for up to three years without making the permanent transfer if the district submits to the commissioner by January 1 of the second fiscal year a plan for eliminating that deficit at the end of the third fiscal year.
(h) If a surplus in the food service fund exists at the end of a fiscal year for three successive years, a district may recode for that fiscal year the costs of lunchroom supervision, lunchroom custodial services, lunchroom utilities, and other administrative costs of the food service program charged to the general fund according to paragraph (c) and charge those costs to the food service fund in a total amount not to exceed the amount of surplus in the food service fund.
A participant that receives school lunch aid under this section must make lunch available without charge to all participating students who qualify for free or reduced-price meals. The participant must also ensure that any reminders for payment of outstanding student meal balances do not demean or stigmatize any child participating in the school lunch program.
1977 c 447 art 6 s 6; 1979 c 334 art 6 s 22; 1981 c 358 art 6 s 26; 1983 c 314 art 6 s 17; 1Sp1985 c 12 art 6 s 11; 1987 c 398 art 6 s 11; 1989 c 209 art 1 s 12; 1991 c 265 art 8 s 5; 1992 c 499 art 8 s 6; 1Sp1995 c 3 art 16 s 13; 1998 c 397 art 7 s 75,164; art 11 s 3; 1998 c 398 art 6 s 25; 2000 c 489 art 7 s 2; 1Sp2005 c 5 art 5 s 2,3; 2006 c 282 art 6 s 1; 2007 c 146 art 5 s 5; 2012 c 138 s 1; 2013 c 116 art 7 s 2; 2013 c 125 art 1 s 27; 2014 c 272 art 5 s 1; 2014 c 312 art 19 s 1,2; 2016 c 189 art 27 s 3