USDA: Food stamps will be funded through February

U.S. & World
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WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration says benefits under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, also known as food stamps, will be funded through February should the government shutdown continue.

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue is asking states to issue the February benefits on or before Jan. 20 so they can be paid on time. SNAP is already fully funded for January.

The department says other USDA programs are also funded through next month, including school lunches, food distribution programs on Indian reservations and child nutrition programs. The latter includes WIC, which provides nutritional assistance to pregnant women, mothers and babies.

If the shutdown lasts until March, the USDA’s $3 billion SNAP contingency fund won’t cover a full month of benefits. Nearly 40 million Americans are enrolled in the program.

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