Starting November 1, families receiving benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), also referred to as food stamps, will see the amount of assistance drop. That’s because a boost in funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the federal stimulus, expires.
“We have 1.8 million individuals who receive the SNAP benefit in Pennsylvania,” said Carey Miller, spokeswoman for the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare. “We would expect that there would be about a 5 percent reduction to those individual SNAP benefits.”
The amount of the benefit reduction will vary.
“It really depends on the household size,” said Miller. “If we’re talking about an individual they may see a difference of $11.00 [per month]. If you have a family of four your benefit may be reduced by as much as $36.00.”
Last week, the Department of Public Welfare began sending letters to recipients notifying them of the reduction. In 2012, the average monthly SNAP benefit per household was $265.86 which went to 869,157 SNAP households. Miller said the federally-funded program offers tips to families on healthy eating on a low budget on their website.