SNAP Recipient Notices
Your SNAP benefits are changing. Every October 1, SNAP benefits are adjusted to reflect changes in the cost of living. In April 2009, a law called the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), raised SNAP benefits to help people affected by the economic recession. The increased benefits provided by this law will expire on October 31, 2013.
As a result, SNAP recipients will see two changes in their benefit amounts during the fall of 2013:
- SNAP Cost of Living (COLA) Notice COLA Notice in Spanish - First, benefits will increase slightly for most households on October 1 to reflect the cost-of-living adjustments.
- American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) SNAP Benefit Reduction Notice ARRA Reduction Notice in Spanish - Then, most families will see their benefits decrease on November 1 due to the end of the extra benefits provided by the 2009 law.
COLA and ARRA Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Are cost of living adjustments (COLAs) done every year?
Yes, cost-of-living adjustments happen every year. The maximum benefit is adjusted every year. Other adjustments include updates to the standard deduction, shelter deduction and income tests (gross and net). By law, States must make these SNAP adjustments each October 1.
What is the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA)?
The ARRA became law in 2009 in order to foster economic activity in response to the recession.
How did ARRA affect SNAP?
ARRA increased the maximum SNAP allotment to provide larger benefit amounts to clients. This increase in benefits will end on October 31, 2013.
When will the changes from ARRA go into effect?
The decrease in SNAP benefits, as a result of the end of ARRA, is scheduled to start on November 1.
How much will my benefits change on November 1, 2013?
Your benefits depend on many things—income, household size and expenses. So, it is hard to say how much your benefits will change. But if you live in a household of 4 and receive the maximum SNAP benefit of $668 and nothing else changes, your benefit would go down about $36.
How will I be notified of a change in my benefits?
You will be notified about changes to your benefits by letter in the mail.
How do I check the balance for my SNAP benefits to know how much I have?
To check your EBT balance:
- Look at the SNAP balance on your last grocery receipt.
- Go to mybenefits.ny.gov, sign in and check your balance on-line.
- Call the toll-free number on the back of your EBT card.
How much will benefits change for households on November 1, 2013?
|Household Size||October 1, 2013||November 1, 2013||Difference|
How can I figure out how to feed my family healthy foods on a lower budget?
Anyone can find out more about stretching food budget dollars, healthy eating, meal / shopping planning at the New York State Office of Temporary Assistance’s Eat Smart New York website. Also, myBenefits.ny.gov provides a fast and easy way for New Yorkers to prescreen and apply for over 15 benefits programs that can help people make ends meet.
The following are USDA resources to help you prepare healthy meals on a budget:
What should I do if I need food right away?
For anyone needing food right away, check out a variety of nutrition resources by visiting:
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