Iowa taps ACS for electronic benefits transfer

Affiliated Computer Services Inc. won a 6-year, $12 million contract from the Iowa Department of Human Services to provide electronic benefits transfer services to distribute food stamps, the company announced Dec. 17.

The contract has two one-year options. The system will begin operations in May 2003 and should be running completely by Oct. 1, 2003, the company said.

Under the contract, ACS of Dallas will design, implement and operate an electronic benefits transfer system to process food stamp benefits for eligible recipients in Iowa. Services include transaction processing; EBT card production and issuance; client, retailer and state staff training; and management of the point-of-sale infrastructure.

The system will be based on ACS' Electronic Payment Processing and Information Control system. It offers features such as Web browser interface, online reporting features and Internet access for clients and retailers to review accounts and transactions.

The agreement marks the first time Iowa will provide electronic transfer benefits statewide to 60,000 food stamp recipients and 1,900 retailers, according to the company.

Northrop Grumman Corp., Los Angeles, will serve as a subcontractor and provide data center services.

ACS provides business process and IT outsourcing solutions to commercial and government clients. The company has about 40,000 employees and annual revenue of $3 billion.

About the Author

William Welsh is a freelance writer covering IT and defense technology.

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