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SNAP February benefits to be distributed early, March benefits in question

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Because of special circumstances, February SNAP benefits will be issued by the Department of Transitional Assistance early for the vast majority of eligible people.

Due to the partial federal government shutdown, SNAP benefits for February are being sent early and will be available between January 17 and January 20.

If you need to send DTA forms, verify information, or submit documents for pending SNAP benefits, you should do so as soon as possible.

March benefits are still in question due to the shutdown.

The Massachusetts WIC and TAFDC (cash assistance) programs are not immediately impacted by the partial federal government shutdown.

All EBT card transactions will continue to be processed at approved locations.

SNAP and WIC benefits are funded through the federal United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

When USDA’s funding expired on December 21, 2018, SNAP benefits for January were fully funded. States have already received that money and have been distributing it to participants. Since the lapse in appropriations, USDA has been reviewing options available to the department for funding February benefits without an additional appropriation from Congress.

“At President Trump’s direction, we have been working with the Administration on this solution. It works and is legally sound. And we want to assure states, and SNAP recipients, that the benefits for February will be provided,” said U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue. “Our motto here at USDA has been to ‘Do Right and Feed Everyone.’ With this solution, we’ve got the ‘Feed Everyone’ part handled. And I believe that the plan we’ve constructed takes care of the ‘Do Right’ part as well.”

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