South Carolina will receive a $1.6 million federal bonus for improving the delivery of the food stamp program, the S.C. Department of Social Services announced Wednesday.

The state was named the second most improved in the country by the U.S. Department of Agriculture based on its "Case and Procedural Error Rate" for fiscal year 2013.

The rate measures how accurately the state denies Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program applications, or suspends or terminates household benefits for the food stamp program.

A lower error rate is better. South Carolina's rate dropped from 31 percent in 2012 to 14 percent in 2013. The national average is about 25 percent.

"We are continually striving to improve the delivery of the SNAP program in all areas," said acting DSS Director Amber Gillum, in a prepared statement. "This recognition from the USDA reflects that effort. We have more new program improvements that we will announce later this year."

Reach Lauren Sausser at 937-5598.