Households on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) have since March 2020 received emergency allocations (EA allotments) equal to the maximum benefit for the household size minus their monthly base benefit.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture, emergency allotments were approved under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act to assist in meeting temporary food demands during the epidemic, according to the agency.
For some time now, state SNAP agencies have had the option of providing emergency food assistance (on a month-to-month basis) to any eligible SNAP households if the state meets specific conditions.
When a national public health emergency (PHE) is declared and a state-level emergency declaration is in effect, states may choose to continue to pay monthly emergency allotments as long as the PHE is in effect.
On January 16, 2022, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra announced that the COVID-19 federal public health emergency will be prolonged for another year.
When a PHE declaration is made, it remains in effect until the secretary declares that the PHE no longer exists — or until the end of the 90-day period that began when the PHE declaration was made. April 16 will mark the end of the current PHE contract.
The USDA has granted waivers to the following states that will last until the end of April 2022:
- The state of New Jersey
- North Carolina is a state in the United States
- Rhode Island is a state in the United States
- South Carolina is a state in the United States
- West Virginia is a state in the United States
Since April 2021, all households in states that participate in these programs have received emergency allotments of at least $95, regardless of income.
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Households will automatically get any additional EA SNAP payments on their EBT card if they qualify.