Tropical depression Nicholas has lashed Texas with powerful wind gusts and heavy rains. Due to the damage from the hurricane, Governor Greg Abbott announced that the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) received federal approval to provide Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients with replacement benefits for the food they lost or got destroyed.
Abbott said in a more detailed statement regarding the replacement SNAP benefits, “Texans along the Gulf Coast whose groceries were lost or destroyed by Hurricane Nicholas will not be left without food on the table. As we continue to work closely with local communities to ensure they have the resources needed to rebuild, these replacement SNAP benefits will help put Texans in need on the path to recovery.”
Wayne Salter, HHS Deputy Executive Commissioner for Access and Eligibility Services, added that he hopes the replacement benefits will give families peace of mind.
The SNAP recipients impacted by Hurricane Nicholas can apply for the replacement food benefits in place of the regular SNAP allotments. This also covers the SNAP emergency allotments provided in response to COVID-19.
To apply and continue social distancing measures and stay-at-home efforts, the HHSC is encouraging SNAP beneficiaries to call 2-1-1 and press option 5. If they cannot do this, they can download Form H1855 here: https://www.hhs.texas.gov/laws-regulations/forms/1000-1999/form-h1855-affidavit-nonreceipt-or-destroyed-supplemental-nutrition-assistance-program-snap-benefits. The SNAP recipients can then mail or fax the forms to HHSC instead of visiting local offices.
More on SNAP, it is a federal program that HHSC administers in Texas. It provides food assistance to eligible low-income families and individuals in Texas. The program supports around 1.4 million.