Texas to Issue February SNAP Benefits Early Amid Funding Uncertainty

Texas will send out federal food assistance early amid the government shutdown and concerns about running out of funding, state officials announced Sunday.A release from Texas Health and Human Services explained the reasoning behind issuing February's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits early .“The early benefits will give recipients an extended period of time to manage their resources, given the ongoing federal government shutdown and uncertainty about future federal program funding,” the release said.Recipients will see February benefits on their Lone Star Cards by Sunday, officials said. They encouraged recipients to space out food purchases instead of buying in large hauls.People who are renewing or applying for benefits are encouraged to submit documents quickly, the release said.The instructions to issue benefits early came from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.“The federal government has alerted states that they can issue benefits until federal funds are no longer available,” the release said. “It is unclear from the federal government when that will occur.”More than 3.5 million Texans received SNAP benefits as of December, with nearly 10 percent of recipients from Dallas County. The program provides low-income families and individuals with food assistance and is completely federally funded.  Continue reading...

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