Families on Reduced or Free Lunch Programs Will Receive Pandemic FundsPress Release
SAN ANGELO, TX – Texas officials have received approval to provide pandemic benefits to families that have temporarily lost access to free or reduced-price school meals.
The program, called Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT), provides eligible families with a one-time payment for each child who previously received reduced-price meals at school.
According to the Texas Health and Human Services department the U.S. Department of Agriculture has approved $1 billion in pandemic food benefits.
P-EBT works the same way the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits do and will help families get the food they need during the current pandemic.
Each eligible child will be able to receive $285. This amount is based on the average number of days schools are closed for the remainder of the school year.
To be eligible for the P-EBT applicants must meet at least one of the following requirements:
- Children 5-18 years old who received SNAP food benefits for March 2020.
- Children up to 21 years old who are certified for free or reduced-price meals at school in Texas during the 2019-20 school year.
Families who received SNAP benefits for March 2020 and have children 5-18 years old as of May 17, 2020, do not need to apply for those children. These families will receive P-EBT benefits on their current Lone Star Card by May 22.
Families with children up to 21 years old who are certified to receive free or reduced-price meals during the 2019-20 school year need to apply for P-EBT. (This includes families who received SNAP benefits for March 2020 and have children under 5 and between 19 and 21.)
The school district will send families a link to an online application by the first week of June.
Once the HHSC receives the application and verifies eligibility with the school list, families will receive a Texas P-EBT card in the mail that includes P-EBT funds beginning in June.
P-EBT funds must be used within the same guidelines as SNAP Benefits.
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