RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- Top officials at the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services for months blamed county officials for long delays in processing food stamp applications, though public records show a glitch with a state computer program was the cause.

WRAL-TV of Raleigh reported Monday ( ) that problems with the state's NCFAST computer system began July 15 with a buggy software update. Almost 70,000 food stamp recipients statewide had benefits delayed or cut off by the time the problems were addressed in late August. Many of those going hungry were families with children.

DHHS Secretary Aldona Wos said last month that counties had failed to properly prepare and train their staffs to use the new software, dismissing that computer glitches at her agency were to blame for the problems.

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