Monthly EBT benefits to be delayed beginning July 1Published 8:51am Thursday, May 5, 2011
A section of the local population receiving funds for food through the Food and Nutrition Services Program (formerly known as Food Stamps) could receive benefits up to nine days later than they currently do beginning July 1.
Polk County DSS Director Sue Rhodes worries families might be caught off guard by the new allocation dates.
“People will need to plan for this change,” Rhodes said. “Basically what was happening was grocery stores were running short on food in those particular times when the benefits were given out. The industry asked for the change.”
Benefits through the program are placed on EBT cards on particular days of the month based on the last number of the receiver’s social security number. In the past, benefits were issued from the third of the month until the 12th. Beginning in July, benefits will be issued from the third of the month until the 21st of the month.
Under the current schedule, people whose social security numbers end in 1 receive their benefits on the third of the month. In that same case, those whose social security numbers end in 0 receive funds on the 12th of the month.
Now, people whose social security numbers end with a 1 will see no change in their allocation date, while individuals with zeros will have to wait nine days later for funds to be posted to their EBT cards. (See chart for other date changes.)
According to MANNA/Second Harvest Food Bank, one in seven North Carolinians receive assistance through Food and Nutrition Services.
Rhodes said locally 1,157 Polk County households participated in the program in March, which means 2,593 individuals were fed.
“We’ll have to prepare ourselves in case people do run out of food so we can connect them with Outreach or other organizations that can provide additional food for their families to make up the gap,” Rhodes said.
MANNA/Second Harvest said grocers do plan to make additional donations to food banks to help offset any hardship the changes create.
For anyone with questions about the changes, contact EBT customer service at 1-888-622-7328. This number is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Date changes for EBT benefit allocations
If your SSN Old date New date
ends in: benefits available benefits available
1 3rd day of the month 3rd day of the month (no change)
2 4th day of the month 5th day of the month
3 5th day of the month 7th day of the month
4 6th day of the month 9th day of the month
5 7th day of the month 11th day of the month
6 8th day of the month 13th day of the month
7 9th day of the month 15th day of the month
8 10th day of the month 17th day of the month
9 11th day of the month 19th day of the month
0 12th day of the month 21st day of the month