New Yorkers eligible for the food stamps will be able to use them to purchase restaurant meals.
Previously, those on the stamps, also known as the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, were not eligible to purchase prepared items, according to the office of New York Governor Kathy Hochul.
As a result, it made it more difficult for people who could not prepare food on their own.
But thanks to a new program signed by Ms. Hochul, poor, disabled and elderly people with food stamps can use them to buy hot or prepared meals in restaurants, as well as delis.
In addition, prices will be reduced for those on food stamps.
But keep in mind that the new program requires federal approval.
Food stamps get a permanent boost
The news comes as food stamps recently received a permanent boost.
On average, food stamps increased by $ 36 per person to reach $ 157 each month on October 1.
But the boost might not seem so big, as food stamps received a temporary 15% boost under the American Rescue Act.
Also, keep in mind that the boost you get depends on what state you live in.
For example, among the 50 states, California will get the largest annual benefit increase at $ 2,039 – bringing its total to $ 9,523 per year, according to estimates from the Department of Agriculture.
This equates to almost an additional $ 170 per month.
New York is expected to receive an additional $ 1,440 in SNAP benefits, which equates to an additional $ 120 each month.
Meanwhile, the tiny state of Wyoming is expected to receive an additional $ 13 over the course of the year – just over $ 1 more per day – bringing the total to $ 62, according to USDA figures.
The benefit is generally limited to those whose gross income does not exceed 130% of the federal poverty line.
This currently starts at $ 12,880 for a one-person household and increases with the size of your family.
For example, the poverty line for a traditional four-person household is $ 26,500.
And the eligibility criteria for food stamps vary by state.
For New York, the maximum size of a one-person household can receive in monthly food stamps is $ 250.
This number is then increased to a maximum of $ 835 for a family of four.
But the gross income of a family of four must be equal to or less than $ 34,452 per year, or $ 2,871 per month to qualify.
If you think you qualify, New York has an online tool where you can apply for SNAP benefits.
But if you don’t live in New York, you need to apply in your own state, which may be through your social service or social service center.
Find your local SNAP program and social service agency.
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