State of Illinois Expands Pandemic EBT Program

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker announced that around one million children across the state will receive more federally-funded food benefits, starting next month.  Officials say the benefits have a maximum value of $110 million for each month and are expected to reach around 200,000 additional eligible children this school year compared to last year. This came after a state request to expand eligibility for this program and the extra food support is being funded through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service. All of the children who are eligible to receive benefits automatically get the benefits on an EBT card mailed directly to their residences. The funding will be divided up by the Illinois Department of Human Services in conjunction with the Illinois State Board of Education. Officials say Illinois’ Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer program brought around 764,000 children over $259 million worth of nutrition benefits during the last academic year. In the weeks to come families across the state will receive a total of $6.82 for each day the child did not have access to meals that were provided by their school. This is a representation of a nineteen percent increase over the last academic year when the daily benefit was $5.70. Officials say they will receive one P-EBT card per eligible child and the cards can be utilized to purchase food at EBT-authorized retailers that include most major grocery stores in the state. Cards will be sent d to the address their school has on file for them.


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