TUCSON, Ariz. — Nearly 320,000 food stamp recipients in Arizona will not have to worry about getting their benefits next month.
The Arizona Department of Economic Security (DES) announced a plan Monday to pay out Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits for February early amid a partial shutdown of the federal government. The DES says the move comes via guidance from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Some benefits of the program -- which is sometimes referred to as food stamps -- worried the funding for their food benefits would run out if the government shutdown continued through February. Instead, the DES says it plans to pay February benefits this week and is encouraging all recipients to budget those funds through next month.
The DES says they'll be paying out benefits throughout this week. The date each household receives benefits will be based on the first letter of the family's last name:
Jan. 17: A – F
Jan. 18: G – L
Jan. 19: M – R
Jan. 20: S – Z
SNAP recipients can also check their balance by calling 1-888-997-9333, or logging into their EBT account online.