by State Representative Joe Gresko (121st District)
I am pleased to report that the Biden Administration and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) have approved a significant and permanent increase in the amount of food stamp assistance (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program SNAP) available to families in need.
The pandemic further confirmed what activists have been saying all along: inadequate assistance from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) forced many households to simply go hungry as the funds dwindled toward the end of the month.
Starting in October, SNAP benefits will rise an average of 25 percent—a permanent change that will benefit our nation’s 42 million SNAP beneficiaries. As a result, the average SNAP benefit – excluding additional funds provided as part of pandemic relief – will increase by $36.24 per person, per month, beginning October 1, 2021.
This additional assistance will help individuals and families maintain a healthy diet and keep food on the table both during and after these uncertain times.
Connecticut’s SNAP program, including information on how to apply for food assistance follows:
Eligibility: Income Limits
To receive SNAP benefits in Connecticut, household income and other resources have to be under certain limits and are reviewed. For some households, there is also an asset limit.
Table 1: SNAP Income Eligibility Limits – Oct. 1, 2020, through Sept. 30, 2021
Household Size Gross monthly income
(130 percent of poverty) Net monthly income
(100 percent of poverty)
1 $1,383 $1,064
2 $1,868 $1,437
3 $2,353 $1,810
4 $2,839 $2,184
5 $3,324 $2,557
6 $3,809 $2,930
7 $4,295 $3,304
8 $4,780 $3,677
Each additional member +$486 +$374
The gross income limit does not apply to households in which at least one person is 60 years of age or older, or receives disability income. However, all households are subject to a monthly net income limit. The net income limit is equal to the current Federal Poverty Level and is the amount left over after certain deductions are allowed. These deductions are established by the USDA Food and Nutrition Service. Details can be found on their website at: http://www.fns.usda.gov/SNAP/
There is no asset limit EXCEPT for households whose gross income is more than 185% of the Federal Poverty Level. For those households, total assets including cash, savings accounts, stocks and bonds cannot be more than $3500. We do not include the home the client lives in as an asset, nor do we put a lien on the home. We also do not count vehicles or retirement accounts, such as IRAs. Again, these asset limits only apply to households whose gross income is more than 185% of the Federal Poverty Level.
A “household” is all the people who live together and buy and prepare food together. Once a household meets the eligibility requirements, we calculate the amount of the household’s SNAP benefit based on the household’s income and certain allowable deductions for shelter, dependent care expenses, medical costs and child support payments to others outside the household. Shelter costs are rent and mortgage payments, heating or cooling not included in rent, and utility and monthly telephone services charges.
SNAP Benefit Amounts
The recently passed Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 increased the maximum and minimum SNAP allotments households are eligible to receive. This increase is in effect from January 1, 2021 – June 30, 2021. The maximum SNAP benefit amounts are listed in the table below.
For a household of: The maximum SNAP benefit is:
1 $234 monthly
2 $430 monthly
3 $616 monthly
4 $782 monthly
5 $929 monthly
6 $1,114 monthly
7 $1,232 monthly
For more information about income limits and benefit amounts for households of 8 or more, or for any other information about SNAP, please call 1-855-626-6632.
As always, please feel free to reach out to me at the Capitol at 800-842-8267 or email me at Joseph.Gresko@cga.ct.gov.