Some SNAP beneficiaries get extra funding this month

Some SNAP beneficiaries get extra funding this month
Residents on Dianne Street are cleaning up after the flood waters receded. (Source: Nicolette Schleisman/KSLA News 12)
Residents on Dianne Street are cleaning up after the flood waters receded. (Source: Nicolette Schleisman/KSLA News 12)

SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - Some flood victims are speaking out after they have heard that non-flood victims are getting some extra money this month.

"Well everybody who was flooded and need assistance should get it," said Jimmy Days, a flood victim.

KSLA News 12 has received multiple calls from viewers wanting to know why some who are receiving the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program got more money than their usual monthly allotment, and are not flood victims.

We set out to get those questions answered.

"I lost everything in my freezer because the lights were out, so I've had to try to replace the food stuff that I did lose," said Days.

Jimmy Days lives on Dianne St. in Shreveport. Two weeks ago, floodwaters were pouring into the street, at some places about chest deep.

"I stepped out there, and water was lapping at my front door," said Days.

When we told him that non-flood victims were receiving additional funding on this month's SNAP Electronic Benefits Transfer card, or EBT, he was frustrated.

"If it's related to flooding, then only those affected by the floods should receive additional SNAP income of funds," said Debbie Cloud, the regional administrator for the Shreveport region of the Department of Children and Family Services.

According to the Department of Children and Family Services, households that receive regular SNAP benefits and live in parishes where the Disaster Supplemental Nutritional Program - or DSNAP - is activated, will automatically have additional SNAP benefits added to their card for the month of March, if they are not already receiving the maximum allotment for their household size.

DCFS was authorized to issue the automatic, supplemental benefits to 5 parishes - which included Natchitoches and Caddo.

"In that parish, if there is a great amount of flooding, we request that and the Feds authorize that to happen," explained Cloud.

DSNAP and SNAP are two different programs, but both SNAP and DSNAP benefits are funded completely by the USDA Federal nutrition service funds. Federal and State governments share the administration costs for both programs. The Federal government contributes nearly 50 percent.
    
"The state has requested and the federal government has authorized both sets - both types of benefits to be issued," said Cloud.

As for Days, he plans to go and see if he can get help from DCFS.

"I'll have an opportunity to see if I qualify. I don't know if I do or not, but I'll have to go and check it out," said Days.

There are other zip codes within 18 other parishes that the DCFS requested assistance for SNAP beneficiaries, including in Bossier, DeSoto, Bienville, Claiborne and Webster parishes. They are not qualified for automatic supplement, but can request supplemental benefits.

Flood victims who have lost food that is purchased with SNAP benefits will be able to get 50 percent of their monthly allotment replaced by the DCFS.

State workers are still helping families impacted by the floods. The DSNAP program provides food assistance to eligible households that lost income or suffered damage as a result of the recent flooding.

Friday is the last chance for people with last names beginning with A - K can get signed up.

You can pre-register for assistance by calling 1-888-524-3578.

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