This Position Is No Longer Available
  1. Overview
  2. Duties
  3. Qualifications & Evaluations
  4. Benefits & Other Info
  5. How to Apply

Job Title:Program Specialist

Department:Department Of Agriculture

Agency:Food and Nutrition Service

Job Announcement Number:13-FNS-134

This position is closed and no longer accepting online applications through USAJOBS.

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.


$53,500.00 to $84,146.00 / Per Year


Friday, June 14, 2013 to Friday, July 05, 2013




Full-time - Permanent




2 vacancies - New York - New York, NY, USView Map


U.S. citizens who meet any of the categories shown under the heading "Who May Apply" at the end of the Job Summary section below.


The mission of the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) is to increase food security and reduce hunger in partnership with cooperating organizations by providing children and low-income people with access to food, a healthy diet, and nutrition education in a manner that supports American agriculture and inspires public confidence.

This position is located in the Retailer Operations Division, Investigative Analysis Branch-Area 1. FNS provides excellent opportunities for specialized training through its own facilities and outside resources. Career guidance and on- and off-the-job training programs are tailored to an individual employee's needs. If you want to apply your knowledge and skills to food program activities that seek to strengthen America, there is a challenging and rewarding career waiting for you with FNS!

Key Information:

  • FNS offers alternative and flexible work schedules.
  • Depending on a variety of circumstances, Telework may be available.
  • Click "Print Preview" to review the entire announcement before applying.
Who May Apply:
  1. Current Federal employees on career or career conditional appointments in the competitive service, or former Federal employees with reinstatement eligibility;
  2. CTAP/ICTAP eligibles from the local commuting area;
  3. Individuals eligible under special hiring authorities (e.g., individual with disabilities, covered by an interchange agreement, or eligible for Veterans' Recruitment Appointment (VRA), Certain Military Spouses), etc.
  4. USDA employees currently serving on a Veterans' Recruitment Appointment (VRA); OR
  5. Individuals eligible for appointment under the Veterans' Employment Opportunities Act (VEOA).
Individuals who do not meet the above may apply under 13-FNS-135P, open to the Public.



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    The following are the duties of this position at the GS-11 level. If you are selected at a lower grade level, you will have the opportunity to learn to perform all these duties, and will receive training to help you grow in this position. As a Program Specialist, you will:

    • Apply knowledge of the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008, and applicable provisions of Title 7 of the U.S. Code, as well as a comprehensive understanding of the rules, policies, procedures, and Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) in the authorization and monitoring of retailers participating in the SNAP. 
    • Perform review and analysis of retailer applications and documents to determine the eligibility of retailers to accept SNAP benefits, and make recommendations to supervisor for approval/non-approval of applications. Conducts discussions with retailers to determine their eligibility to participate in the SNAP, and gathers information on store stock to determine food inventory eligibility, location, and ownership. 
    • Facilitate retailer-related issues and concerns regarding equipment and redemption with their SNAP electronic benefit transaction (EBT) Coordinator and/or State EBT contact through to resolution.
    • Produce detailed and comprehensive case analysis reports that reflect proper research, planning, execution, conclusions and documentation to substantiate case findings.


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    Although all documents must be received by the closing date of the announcement (see "How to Apply"), applicants have until 30 days after the closing date to meet all eligibility and qualifications requirements listed below.


    For the GS-09 level: Candidates must have been a GS-07 for 52 weeks (when applicable).

    For the GS-11 level: Candidates must have been a GS-09 for 52 weeks (when applicable).

    Time After Competitive Appointment:
    Candidates who are current Federal employees serving on a non-temporary competitive appointment must have served at least three months in that appointment. 

    Minimum Qualification Requirement: 

    Specialized Experience:
    For GS-09 level: You must have one year of experience at a level of difficulty and responsibility equivalent to the GS-07 grade level in the Federal service. Experience for this position includes researching and analyzing information such as laws and regulations that govern public assistance programs in support of investigations of alleged fraud and abuse by participants of public assistance programs.

    For GS-11 level: You must have one year of experience at a level of difficulty and responsibility equivalent to the GS-09 grade level in the Federal service. Experience for this position includes researching and analyzing information such as laws and regulations that govern public assistance programs in support of investigations of alleged fraud and abuse by participants of public assistance programs and providing recommendations for resolution of findings. 

    You may substitute education for specialized experience as follows:

    For GS-09: 

    Master's or equivalent graduate degree; or

    2 full years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to such a degree; or

    LL.B. or J.D., if related

    For GS-11:

    Ph.D. or equivalent doctoral degree; or

    3 full years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to such a degree; or

    LL.M., if related

    Notes: The experience may have been gained in either the public or private sector. One year of experience refers to full-time work; part-time work is considered on a prorated basis. The education generally must be from an accredited (or pre-accredited) college or university recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Foreign education must be evaluated by a credentialing agency. You may qualify by a combination of experience and education. Options for qualifying based on a combination will be identified in the online questions.



    Your application includes your:

    1. Resume,
    2. Responses to the online questions, and
    3. Required supporting documents.
    We use a multi-step process to evaluate and refer applicants:

    1.   Minimum Requirements: Your application must show that you meet all requirements, including the education and/or experience required for this position. You will be found "not qualified" if you do not possess the minimum competencies required for the position. If your application is incomplete, we will rate you as ineligible. 

    2.   Rating: Your application will be evaluated in the following areas: 
    • Ability to analyze organizations or operations using written materials and physical observations in order to assess compliance with federal regulations
    • Ability to understand, interpret and apply complex operating instructions
    • Ability to communicate in writing in order to prepare reports, correspondence, according to Food and Nutrition Service Program guidance materials
    • Ability to use analytical skills to evaluate documentation in relation to SNAP policy and regulations 
    Your application will be rated based on the extent and quality of your experience, education and training relevant to the duties of this position. We may lower your rating if your responses to the online questions are not supported by the education and/or experience described in your application.

    3. Referral: If you are among the top qualified candidates, your application will be referred to a selecting official for consideration and possible interview. If you are a displaced or surplus Federal employee (eligible for the Career Transition Assistance Plan (CTAP)/Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP)), you must receive a rating of at least 85 out 100 to be rated as well qualified to receive special selection priority.

    We recommend that you preview the online questions for this announcement before you start the application process.

    To preview questions please click here.


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    Our comprehensive benefits are some of the most generous. Explore the major benefits offered to most Federal employees at:


    • We may select from this announcement or any other source to fill one or more vacancies.
    • Relocation expenses are not authorized.
    • This is a bargaining-designated position.
    • If you are retired from the Federal Government and are selected for this vacancy, your retirement annuity may be offset from your pay.  
    • If you are selected for a position with further promotion potential, you will be placed under a career development plan, and may be non-competitively promoted if you successfully complete the requirements. However, promotion is neither implied nor guaranteed.
    • Creditable Service for Annual Leave Accrual: Newly-appointed employees or employees reappointed after a break in service may be eligible to receive credit toward annual leave accrual based on prior work experience. FNS may grant service credit for prior non-Federal work experience or active duty uniformed service that is directly related to the position being filled. Creditable service must be determined prior to the effective date of the employee's entry on duty. For more information, contact the Human Resources Specialist listed under "Contact Information."
    • To file a complaint of discrimination, within 45 days of notification, write USDA, EEO Counselor, FNS, Office of Civil Rights, 12th floor, Alexandria, VA 22302-1500, or call (703) 305-2195. USDA is an equal opportunity employer.
    • FNS has contracted with the Treasury's Bureau of the Public Debt (BPD) to provide certain Human Resource services to its organization. BPD's responsibilities include advertising FNS' vacancies, accepting and handling applications, and extending job offers.  

    CONDITIONS OF EMPLOYMENT: If selected for this position, you will be required to:

    • Complete a one-year probationary period (unless already completed).
    • Complete a Declaration for Federal Employment to determine your suitability for Federal employment.
    • If you are a male applicant born after December 31,1959, certify that you have registered with the Selective Service System or are exempt from having to do so.
    • Have your salary sent to a financial institution of your choice by Direct Deposit/Electronic Funds Transfer.  
    • Go through a Personal Identity Verification (PIV) process that requires two forms of identification from the Form I-9. Federal law requires verification of the identity and employment eligibility of all new hires in the U.S.
    • Travel locally and/or overnight approximately 25% of the time.
    • Obtain and use a Government-issued charge card for business-related travel.  
    • Successfully complete a background investigation.


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    The following instructions outline our application process. You must complete this application process and submit any required documents by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time (ET) on the closing date of this announcement. We are available to assist you during business hours (normally 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., Monday - Friday). If applying online poses a hardship, please contact us by noon ET on the announcement's closing date. 

    If you are experiencing system issues with your application, please contact the CareerConnector Help Desk at and/or the USAJobs Help Desk.

    FNS provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities on a case-by-case basis. Please contact us if you require this for any part of the application and hiring process.

    Step 1 - Create or Upload a Resume with USAJOBS ( We recommend you go to the end of the Qualifications & Evaluations section of the job announcement to preview the online questions that you will answer. You may need to customize your resume to ensure that it supports your responses to these questions. See Resume Tips.

    Step 2 - Apply Online Click "Apply Online." You will be directed to USAJOBS where you must select a resume. If you have documents uploaded to USAJOBS, you may select those you wish to submit as well. After selecting a resume (and documents, if applicable), click "Apply for this position now!" and follow the prompts to register (if you haven't already done so), answer the online questions, and submit all required documents. You will have the opportunity to submit documents via 3 different options: 1) download from USAJOBS, 2) upload from your computer, or 3) fax. You can update your application or documents anytime while the announcement is open. To do so, log into your USAJOBS account and click on "Application Status." Click on the position title, and then select "Apply Online" to continue.


     Please note that if you do not provide all required information, as specified in this announcement, you may lose consideration for this position (or lose the special consideration for which you may be eligible).

    SF-50 (Current and Former Federal Employees)

  • Submit a copy of an SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action, which shows your current grade and competitive civil service status. If your current grade is not your highest permanent grade, submit a copy of an additional SF-50 showing your highest grade. (The "position occupied" block on the SF-50 should show a "1" and your "tenure" block should show a "1" or "2".)
  • If you are currently on a Veterans' Recruitment Appointment (VRA), submit a copy of an SF-50 showing your appointment.
  • Performance Appraisal
    Submit a copy of your most recent completed annual performance appraisal, dated within the last 18 months, that includes the final rating. If you have not received a performance appraisal, please explain why in your application.

    If you are a displaced or surplus Federal employee eligible for consideration under the Career Transition Assistance Plan (CTAP) or Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP), you must submit proof of eligibility. For a detailed list of documents, click here.

    Special Hiring Authorities Documentation
    If you are applying under a special hiring authority, submit a copy of proof of your eligibility.

    Veterans' Documentation
    If you are applying through VEOA or VRA, you must submit a copy of your Certificate of Release or Discharge From Active Duty, DD-214 (Member 4 copy), or other official documentation from a branch of the Armed Forces or the Department of Veterans Affairs showing dates of service and type of discharge. Ten-point preference eligibles must also submit an Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference, SF-15, along with the required documentation listed on the back of the SF-15 form.
    Education Documentation

    If you are qualifying for this position by substituting education or training for experience, submit a copy of your transcripts or a list of courses showing title, number of credits, grade, and date of completion.

    To be used in meeting qualifications requirements, a college or university degree generally must be from an accredited (or pre-accredited) college or university recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. For a list of schools which meet these criteria, please refer to An official transcript will be required if you are selected. If you are qualifying based on foreign education, you must submit proof of creditability of education as evaluated by a credentialing agency; more information may be found at:


    HR Specialist
    Phone: 304-480-7300
    Fax: 0000000000
    TDD: 304-480-8725
    Agency Information:
    USDA, Food and Nutrition Service
    Parkersburg, WV
    Fax: 0000000000


    You may check the status of your application for this position at any time by logging onto the USAJOBS "My Account" tab and clicking on "Application Status". We also recommend you opt to receive status change emails through USAJOBS by logging into "Notification Settings." Please notify us if your contact information changes after the closing date of the announcement. Also, note that if you provide an email address that is inaccurate, or if your mailbox is full or blocked (e.g., spam blocker), you may not receive important communication that could affect your consideration for this position.

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