ACS signs $69M e-benefit contract with California
Affiliated Computer Services (ACS) has entered an agreement with the state of California to provide electronic benefit transfer services to the California Health and Human Services Agency under a seven-year, $69 million contract, with additional three one-year options available.

EBT allows recipients to receive their benefits electronically through the use of a debit card, which increases the convenience and security for recipients while reducing costs for taxpayers, said ACS. California clients use the Golden State Advantage card to receive benefits from food stamp and cash benefit programs.

ACS will provide comprehensive EBT services in support of the state, including transaction processing, data center services, training of state staff, reconciliation and settlement and reporting. ACS will also support California families who receive food stamps and/or cash aid by providing an automated call center response unit, as well as live customer service support.

"ACS' proposal will save taxpayers $21.6 million annually and at the same time improve services to benefit recipients. Through the new 24/7 website, benefit recipients will have greater access to information that's crucial to their daily lives,” said Carlos Ramos, director of the California Office of Systems Integration.

The Dallas-based company said it will work with the state and the counties to design, develop and test the system in time for a 2009 implementation.