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following year determined that the State needed intervention.

Another commenter argued that the two consecutive year

and three consecutive year timeframes in §303.704(a) and

(b) are unrealistic and that these timeframes, which relate

to the Secretary’s annual determinations regarding State

performance under Part C of the Act, should refer to program years, not consecutive years.

Discussion: Section 303.704 incorporates the language in section 616(e)(1) through (e)(3) of the Act, which provides the minimum enforcement actions the Secretary must take to ensure compliance with the Act when the Secretary determines that a State needs assistance for two consecutive years in implementing the requirements of Part C of the Act, or is in need of intervention in implementing the requirements of Part C for three consecutive years, or any time the Secretary determines that a State needs substantial intervention in implementing the requirements of Part C of the Act. It is expected that under most circumstances, the Department will follow the procedures specified in section 616(e)(1) through (e)(3) of the Act

and §303.707 in enforcing Part C of the Act. However,

sections 616(g) and 642 of the Act make clear that the Secretary has the authority to use enforcement mechanisms,