The USDA said the federal government shutdown will not impact a retailer’s ability to accept food stamp benefits
By NACS Online // January 02, 2019
With the federal government shutdown continuing, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) informed retailers that Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits are not affected for January 2019.
“While a lapse in funding has caused the federal government to shut down, there is NO immediate impact on your ability to accept SNAP – Food Stamp – E.B.T. – benefits. SNAP benefits are fully funded and will continue to be available to SNAP participants in January of 2019. As a SNAP authorized retailer, you should continue to accept SNAP benefits as part of normal operations,” the agency said.
However, while the benefits to current recipients continues, USDA announced that the government shutdown has forced the agency to slash its staff by 95% in late December, Newsweekreports. Those relying on the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) or food distribution programs on Native American reservations could lose funding.
“There may be a lapse in funding for the federal government, but that will not relieve USDA of its responsibilities for safeguarding life and property through the critical services we provide,” Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue said in a statement.
The shutdown entered its 12th day today, as the impasse continues in Congress over resolution to a funding bill.