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Will You Get Extra Food Stamps in January 2023?

Will You Get Extra Food Stamps in January 2023?

Wondering if you will get extra food stamps in January 2023? The answer depends on what state you live in… but no matter where you live, it looks like those extra benefits will not be available much longer.

Before we dive into which states are still distributing extra EBT in January, we need to talk about how Congress just wrecked this emergency program in the new Omnibus spending bill.

The Omnibus spending bill will change EBT in 2023.

The new bill introduces some helpful new programs, like a revamped summer meals program and reimbursements for victims of EBT theft. However, Congress chose to fund those new changes by completely ending the Emergency Allotments that we have all grown to love over the last several years.

The government will begin replacing stolen EBT benefits.

As we reported last month, EBT thefts are on the rise throughout the United States. Thousands of victims have lost millions of dollars in precious food benefits to these thieves and they usually cannot get those benefits replaced.

Fortunately, the new Omnibus bill includes language that requires states to reimburse fraud victims so that they can still purchase the food that they need.

According to the Chicago Food Bank, the bill will force states to return up to two months of benefits at a time, no more than twice per year. That’s up to four months worth of benefits that can be replaced per year.

This change is temporary and will only cover benefits stolen between October 1, 2022 and September 30, 2024. 

Kids will get extra food stamps starting in Summer 2024.

The new spending bill also modernizes the Summer Meals Program. This is the program that provides free food to school-aged children during the summer months.

Eligible families will receive $40 per child per month during the summer to help purchase food. This program is expected to begin in Summer 2024, so it will not be set up in time to help families purchase food this summer.

The new rules will also allow rural children to take home up to 10 days of food instead of having to eat a meal at a congregate meal sites. This will relieve a tremendous burden from low income families that have to travel great distances to reach their nearest summer meal location.

The Emergency Allotments will end in Spring 2023.

Unfortunately, the government chose to fund these two new meal programs by completely gutting the Emergency Allotment program that has been helping people purchase food during the pandemic. This program has been critical for helping low income individuals and families combat soaring inflation.

They’re taking that away as early as March, on the promise that eventually they’ll start reimbursing stolen benefits and kids will get a little bit of summer food money starting in 2024. It’s not a great trade for most EBT users.

According to the Washington Post, “Recipients of all ages would lose benefits beginning as early as March 2023, she said, with families on average losing $82 per person, per month. But the steepest loss would be for older adults at the minimum benefit level who will see their monthly SNAP benefits fall from $281 to $23.”

If you see a sudden drop in your benefits, don’t forget that we’ve found free food programs for seniors!

Reach out to your elected officials right away!

Food banks and other hunger advocates all over the United States are calling on Congress to come back to the table and negotiate higher SNAP benefits in a new Farm Bill. This is a desperately needed measure to help low income families purchase the food they need.

You can help! Please reach out to your local elected legislators and explain what a difference this program has made for you. Let them know how important those extra food stamps benefits are and ask them to help low income families by increasing those benefits.

NEW EBT Discount: Instacart!

Our sponsor, Instacart, is offering discounted Instacart+ memberships to EBT participants. If you’ve used SNAP EBT to purchase groceries through Instacart in the last six months, you can purchase a year-long membership for about $4.99 per month. That’s 50% off the regular price! Get the details here.

Are we getting extra food stamps in January 2023?

Now let’s get into the list. We’ll start with the states that have confirmed they will be sending extra EBT sometime in January 2023:

  • Alabama (Dec 30 for December, Feb 1 for January)
  • California (Jan 7 for CalSAWS or Jan 13 for CalWIN)
  • Colorado (Jan 8-13)
  • Connecticut (Jan 18)
  • Delaware (Jan 25)
  • Guam (Jan 20)
  • Hawaii (Jan 10)
  • Illinois (Jan 21-29)
  • Kansas (Jan 22-31)
  • Louisiana (Jan 7, 14, 21 and 28)
  • Maine (Jan 10)
  • Maryland (Jan 4-23)
  • Massachusetts (Jan 3)
  • Michigan (Jan 21-30)
  • Minnesota (Jan 10-31)
  • New Hampshire (Jan 3 & 20)
  • New Jersey (Jan 1-5)
  • New Mexico (Jan 1-31)
  • New York (Jan 12-27 for NYC, Jan 9-23 for rest of state)
  • North Carolina (Jan 22-31)
  • Ohio (Jan 24)
  • Oklahoma (Jan 10-15)
  • Oregon (Jan 10)
  • Pennsylvania (January 18-31)
  • Rhode Island (Jan 4)
  • South Carolina (Jan 1-19; see note below)
  • Texas (Jan 3-10)
  • Utah (Jan 28)
  • Vermont (Jan 12)
  • Virginia (Jan 16)
  • Washington (Jan 4-20)
  • Washington DC (regular issuance date)
  • West Virginia (Jan 4)
  • Wisconsin (Jan 21)

Which states MAY be getting extra food stamps in January 2023?

States can continue submitting their paperwork until mid-January, so there are some areas we’re not sure about yet. We will continue to update this list as more states confirm their details.

In the meantime, these are the states we aren’t sure about yet:

  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Illinois
  • Maine
  • Nevada

Guam and the Virgin Islands typically submit their paperwork later in the month as well.

Which states are NOT getting extra food stamps in January 2023?

Unfortunately, EBT users in the following states will not receive extra benefits in January 2023 because their states have already terminated their emergency allotment programs:

  • Alaska
  • Arizona
  • Arkansas
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Idaho
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Kentucky
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • North Dakota
  • South Dakota
  • Tennessee
  • Wyoming

This is the final transition month for South Carolina.

When South Carolina filed their paperwork this month, they indicated that this was the final transition month for higher benefits. The extra SNAP benefits will end on January 31, 2023, for residents of South Carolina only. Starting in February, you’ll go back to your usual lower SNAP amount.

Starting in February, you’ll go back to whatever your usual amount was. You’ll need to check your paperwork or contact a caseworker for more information.

That’s a difficult transition, so please plan accordingly. Do what you can to stock up on pantry staples while you’re still getting those extra benefits.

The USDA has changed the rules for the Emergency Allotment Program.

We have previously reported that there are two things that must be true for a state to issue these extra benefits. First, there must be a federal public health emergency declaration in effect regarding COVID-19 and second, there must be a statewide public health emergency declaration in effect as well. It appears that this is no longer true.

Last month, we reported that Washington State had ended its statewide emergency declaration and would therefore not be issuing any extra EBT in December… but then they did! Washington State is back on the list for January as well.

Of course, we had to figure out how this was happening since it did not align with any prior guidance from the USDA. We reached out to the USDA directly for more information.

According to Julie Yee, a public affairs specialist at the United States Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service, the USDA has adapted by allowing the state to file a robust emergency declaration proclamation that wasn’t exactly a statewide emergency health declaration. Because of this, some states can end their statewide declaration and still distribute extra EBT benefits.

Yee said, “To continue the issuance of Emergency Allotments (EA), a State/Territory must have a Federal and State/Territory declaration or proclamation. Several states and territories continue to face food insecurity challenges and have requested a robust emergency declaration/proclamation due to COVID-19. FNS has reviewed and approved some of Western Region States that requested a robust emergency declaration/proclamation.”

She also supplied a copy of the declaration, which can be viewed below:

Basically, Washington’s Department of Social and Health Services made the case that Washington has been so severely impacted by the pandemic that they should be able to continue issuing extra food stamps in January 2023 despite the fact that their statewide emergency health order has already ended.

The USDA has approved this and Washington should be able to continue issuing the Emergency Allotments to their residents until the federal government ends them for all states.

Some states are still battling huge backlogs.

Throughout the pandemic, states have received waivers that have allowed them to skip essential paperwork like recertification interviews. These things take a lot of time and effort, and the government eliminated those barriers temporarily to ensure that people could continue receiving benefits through the pandemic.

However, many of those pandemic-era programs and waivers are ending. This means that states suddenly have to start meeting those requirements and that’s a lot of extra paperwork. To make matters worse, these offices are often severely understaffed and overworked.

Why didn’t I get my food stamps this month?

Unfortunately, we’ve had a lot of people start asking why they didn’t get their food stamps on time. In most cases, it’s because of a paperwork backlog.

Some states, like Georgia and Hawaii, had extreme months-long backlogs that prevented people from being able to complete their recertification paperwork on time. That meant that their benefits expired and were not renewed, which meant that they did not receive their benefits when they expected them.

Fortunately, many of those states were able to receive another waiver and resume those benefits… but those interviews still need to be done or this issue will continue happening.

We have confirmed that there are still existing paperwork backlogs in several states, including Alaska. The Department of Health Communications Director Clinton Bennett stated that “the division currently estimates that the backlog has resulted in a 90-120 day delay for processing of SNAP recertifications, which are being worked on in date order.” That means it could take up to FOUR MONTHS to recertify, which could result in a lapse in benefits.

These delays are caused by a combination of factors, including the ending of pandemic-era waivers, staffing issues, recent cyberattacks, and more.

Try these tips to protect your benefits.

There are a few things you can do to help prevent an interruption in your benefits.

First, see if you are eligible for ESAP. ESAP is a new simplified application program for seniors and disabled people who do not have any earned income. If you receive fixed disability income only, you may be able to use this simplified application. If you do, then you only have to recertify once every two or three years (depending on your state), and that can really help you maintain those benefits longer and without any interruptions.

Second, always complete your renewal paperwork right away. It’s going to take the office weeks to months to process it when you submit it, so you’re less likely to experience an interruption if you submit that paperwork right away. If you wait too long, your benefits may stop temporarily while they wait to process your paperwork.

FAQ about Extra Food Stamps in January 2023

We’ve received a lot of questions about the emergency allotment program over the last few years. In this section, we’ll try to answer the questions we’ve received the most.

Are we getting extra food stamps in January 2023?

Some states are still issuing extra food stamps in January 2023 but others are not. You may get extra food stamps this month if you live in a state that is still participating. Check our list for details.

Is it true that SNAP benefits will end on January 31, 2023?

No, it is not true that SNAP benefits will end on January 31, 2023. SNAP is a federal program that will continue indefinitely. The extra emergency allotments will end in January 31, 2023, in South Carolina. For other states, the end dates for the emergency allotments will differ but the base SNAP rate will continue past that date.

Why do some states get extra food stamps and not others?

The decision to issue extra food stamps through the Emergency Allotment program is made by state governments. Some states have chosen to continue issuing those extra funds and others have decided not to. It’s up to your local state government.

Are we getting extra food stamps next month, too?

The decision to issue extra food stamps next month is made by state governments. You can check the list at LowIncomeRelief.com/EA for the latest updates on when extra food stamps will be sent in your state.

Will we get more P-EBT?

P-EBT benefits are issued at different times in different states. Each state makes its own decisions about if and when to send those benefits. We have details for each state at LowIncomeRelief.com/p-ebt.

Nicole is the owner and lead researcher for Low Income Relief. She has over 20 years of professional research and writing experience, and she has been solely dedicated to investigating low income topics for the last 10 years. Nicole started Low Income Relief after a personal experience with poverty. When her husband was medically discharged from the US Army, their family experienced tremendous financial hardship. Nicole was able to gather help from multiple community agencies and move into a nearby low income housing unit in just two weeks! Since then, Nicole has been dedicated to helping low income families in crisis. She regularly spends hundreds of hours combing through countless resources to make sure that Low Income Relief has the most comprehensive and complete resource directories on the internet today. Prior to starting Low Income Relief, Nicole worked as a novelist, journalist, ghostwriter and content creator. Her work has been featured in various print and online publications, including USA Today, The Daily Herald, The Chronicle and more. Her work has also been featured by Google for Publishers and other leading industry publications.

Bee C

Friday 27th of January 2023

For Colorado, I haven't received the emergency allotment for this month. I'm not sure whether to keep waiting until this last week, or to call?

Angela Brock

Thursday 26th of January 2023

My state Arkansas

Angela Brock

Thursday 26th of January 2023

Had to recertify my food stamps in December had to send In extra paperwork in January haven't received my January 2023 food stamps will I get them in February

Catherine Marucci

Thursday 26th of January 2023

Hi Angela. You may have to ask them. Have they sent anything saying if your recertification was approved?

Meme

Monday 23rd of January 2023

Hello I never received my extra stamps for January 16 and no one can tell me why

Catherine Marucci

Wednesday 25th of January 2023

Hi. You may need to contact their office.

Dana

Wednesday 18th of January 2023

What day is ct getting extra food stamps

Catherine Marucci

Wednesday 18th of January 2023

Hi Dana. Connecticut is scheduled for January 18th.