December 13, 2002
FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OKAYS AUTOMATIC FOOD STAMPS REPLACEMENTS FOR DECEMBER RECIPIENTS IN MECKLENBURG COUNTY
Charlotte, NC -- Anyone who received Food Stamps in December and purchased food with those stamps that was later ruined because of the power outage caused by the ice storm will have more than half of their benefits automatically replaced.
The decision from the federal government was announced today, and Mecklenburg County is one of 10 counties in the state approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for automatic replacement of Food Stamp benefits. This means that for any household that was certified to receive benefits for December and has not already completed a form at the Mecklenburg County Department of Social Services (DSS) office, the state will automatically add an allotment to their available benefits.
The customers do not need to put anything in writing, nor do they have to come into the office to apply for replacement benefits. Families hard hit by the Dec. 4 ice storm gathered by the hundreds in the lobby of the DSS building to have their Food Stamps replaced. On Dec. 11, there were 1,034 households applying for replacement benefits at DSS.
Since Dec. 9, the Mecklenburg County DSS has processed Food Stamp replacement applications for 2,626 authorized households, which represents more than 10 percent of the 23,000 Food Stamp customers in the County. That amount equals $521,709.