LANSING (WJRT) (2/15/2019) - To avoid long gaps between benefits payments, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) will issue March and April food assistance benefits early.
The move is in response to February's benefits coming early on Jan. 17 during the recent partial federal government shutdown.
March benefits will come on March 3, 4 or 5 while April benefits will come on April 3 to 12. Benefit payments will resume their normal cycle beginning in May.
The moved up payment dates are designed to avoid more than a 45-day gap between food assistance payments. Most payments in Michigan are issued onto Bridge Cards and scheduled over 21 days each month.
“MDHHS wants to make sure that families and individuals can put food on their tables,” said Terrence Beurer, MDHHS deputy director of Field Operations Administration. “We were concerned about families having to go 45 to 60 days or more without benefits as a result of the early issuance of February benefits. Gradually returning to the regular schedule cushions the impact of the federal government shutdown.”
Nearly 1.2 million people in Michigan rely on Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) food assistance programs.
Benefits balances can be checked on the telephone number or web address on the back of Bridge Cards. See Related Links on the right side or bottom of this story for another side to check account balances.