RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Those receiving assistance from SNAP benefits in Virginia will soon see a decrease in the amount they have been receiving as emergency funds are set to expire in March, according to the USDA Food and Nutrition Service.
SNAP emergency allotments were authorized by Congress as temporary help to low-income individuals and families dealing with the hardships of the COVID-19 pandemic.
While SNAP benefits have already returned to normal in many states, Virginia is one of several that chose to continue with the emergency allotments until March 2023, at which point the benefit amount will return to the pre-pandemic normal. The expiration of emergency benefits ends nearly three years of recipients receiving an additional $95 or more on top of their normal payment.
For households receiving both SNAP benefits and Social Security, the payment they receive starting in March may be even lower than pre-pandemic, thanks to the 2023 cost-of-living adjustment that went into effect in January. The adjustment, which increased the amount seniors receive from social security, may push some people into a lower benefit-receiving bracket than they had been in before the pandemic.
The Food and Nutrition Service said it is possible that some households may no longer receive SNAP benefits due to the Social Security increase if they are no longer income-eligible.
To find an updated list of all 2023 adjustments in relation to SNAP allotments and income eligibility standards, click here.