Missourians who are eligible for Food Stamp benefits will receive their February Food Stamp benefit early. The United States Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), which administers the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or Food Stamp program, informed states that payments for the February Food Stamp or SNAP benefit must be issued on January 20 due to the partial federal government shutdown.
Steve Corsi, director of the Missouri Department of Social Services, said people who receive Food Stamps need to keep in mind that they won’t get any in February, and they need to budget accordingly.
Bart Brown, executive director of Ozarks Food Harvest, also wants to be sure people understand that they will not get any SNAP benefits in February since they will get two months' worth in January. He said the change could result in an increased demand for food assistance next month at food pantries.
The shutdown could impact those who need help with groceries but who haven't gotten SNAP benefits yet. According to Missouri DSS, although the Department of Social Services, Family Support Division continues to accept and process Food Stamp applications, FNS does not guarantee eligible applicants will receive Food Stamp benefits while the partial federal shutdown is in effect.
Missouri receives approximately $84.2 million in Food Stamp benefits each month from the federal government.