Taniesa L. Sullivan | The Weekly Ledger News
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Come October, it will be a little easier for food stamp recipients to afford groceries.
Those who receive the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) will see a permanent average increase of monthly allotments by 12.5%, or $104 for a family of four, thanks to soaring inflation, according to the US Department of Agriculture. That brings the maximum benefit for this size household to $939 a month, up from $835.
Benefit levels are based on the cost of the USDA’s Thrifty Food Plan each June, and the change takes effect in October.
This year’s cost of living adjustment is the largest annual percentage increase since 1975 and stems from the massive jump in inflation since last year.
“It will put SNAP benefits better in line with the increase in the cost of food over the past year,” Dottie Rosenbaum, director of federal SNAP policy at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, said of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, as food stamps are formally known.
Nearly 41 million people were enrolled in the food stamp program in June, according to the most recent USDA data. The average monthly benefit is just over $218 per person.
It comes as 34 states, including Alabama, continue to pay pandemic assistance to SNAP recipients equaling a minimum of an extra $95 per month.