Federal Extra Pandemic SNAP Benefits to End

BOSTON — The recently passed Congressional Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023 ends the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) extra temporary benefits, known as SNAP emergency allotments, as of February 2023. This means households will receive their last payment on March 2. SNAP emergency allotments have allowed households to receive the maximum SNAP benefit amount for their household size, with a minimum benefit amount of $95 per month.

Since March 2020, Massachusetts has elected to utilize this temporary benefit program that was made available under the Families First Coronavirus Relief Act. SNAP emergency allotments currently bring more than $95 million of federal funds into the state each month, supporting more than 630,000 households to buy food.

The state has launched a new website, mass.gov/extracovidsnap, to help residents plan for the end of these temporary federal benefits. Over the next several months, individuals and families should explore any optional expenses that may increase their regular SNAP benefits, including:

If they have medical costs over $35 a month for anyone in their SNAP household who is 60 or older or has a disability;

• If their housing costs (rent or mortgage) have gone up; or

• If one is working, looking for work, or in school, tell the Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA) about any child or disabled-adult care costs.

Households can tell DTA about these changes by uploading information via the agency’s free mobile app and online portal DTA Connect, (www.mass.gov/guides/how-to-contact-dta), calling the DTA Assistance Line at (877) 382-2363, visiting a local DTA office, or working with one of the department’s more than 100 SNAP outreach partners, which are local community organizations that work with DTA to help people apply for and maintain their SNAP benefits.

Also, Massachusetts households who get SNAP benefits automatically can participate in the Healthy Incentives Program (HIP). HIP puts money back on an EBT card when SNAP is used to buy local fruits and vegetables from HIP farm vendors, up to $40, $60, or $80 per month, depending on household size. Find a HIP vendor at dtafinder.com.