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Hello,

 

Thank you for your efforts to provide the information requested by DHS to make a P-EBT issuance to student households during this challenging time. I am reaching out to inform you that the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Services, has denied DHS’s P-EBT state plan request to issue P-EBT to student households for the month of September. As a result, DHS will not be able to issue the benefits to any households this fall unless Congress acts to extend the P-EBT program beyond it’s September 30th statutory sunset.

 

We are disappointed in this decision and encourage you to contact your representatives and senators in Congress requesting an extension of the program. P-EBT is a valuable option to families so that they can mitigate risk of exposure to COVID-19 while maintaining their food security.

 

If P-EBT is extended we will reach out to you again about the process for offering this benefit for the current school year.

 

We want to sincerely thank you for all of your hard work and collaboration in attempts to support student households.

 

Thank you!

 

Teresa D. Miller | Secretary

Department of Human Services

625 Forster Street | Harrisburg, PA  17120

Phone:  717.787.2600 | Fax:  717.772.2062

www.dhs.pa.gov

 

Effective Tuesday, September 8, 2020, all P-EBT inquires are to be directed to the PA Department of Human Services (DHS) at RA-PWPEBTQuestions@pa.gov.  DHS is the state agency responsible for the P-EBT program. Therefore, they are assuming the role of researching and responding to all school and parent inquires.

 

What is Pandemic-EBT?

 

The Family’s First Coronavirus Response Act authorized a new benefit called Pandemic EBT to help families with children who are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals. The benefit will come on an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card, which is like a debit card. The benefits can only be spent on food items at any store that accepts SNAP (“food stamps”). P-EBT is a one-time payment that aims to help parents afford food for children who could be receiving free or reduced-price school meals if their schools were open.

 

The federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act of 2020 provides benefits, referred to as Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer (P-EBT), to families of school-aged children who would have otherwise received free or reduced-priced meals if it were not for school closures.

The families at CAP will receive the approximate food benefit amount of $365.00 for each school-aged child in their family.

 

This benefit will be issued in the form of a P-EBT card by the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS).

 

            If you already have an active EBT (SNAP) card, the P-EBT funds will be automatically added to your card. You do not need to do anything for this to occur. 

 

If you do not have an active EBT (SNAP) card and your mailing address is correct in PowerSchool you also do not need to do anything to receive your P-EBT card. If your mailing address is not correct, please provide your current mailing address to ensure the proper delivery of your P-EBT card.

 

When will I get my P-EBT?

 

Pennsylvania’s Department of Human Services (DHS) and Department of Education will begin to issue P-EBT benefits using information from schools within approximately 15 days of plan approval. They will issue the benefits in phases. Households that are already getting SNAP (food stamps), Medical Assistance, or TANF Cash Assistance will receive P-EBT benefits first. In the second phase, the state will mail P-EBT cards to other households with students who are already enrolled in school meals or who attend a CEP school like CAP. Households with newly enrolled students will receive their P-EBT cards throughout the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year.

Effective June 9, 2020, SFA's may direct parents/guardians to the following online P-EBT Inquiry Form if the parent/guardian believes they should have already received P-EBT benefits at https://www.emergencymealsurvey.com/PA. 

The following issuance timeline is also provided on the welcome page of the P-EBT Inquiry Form. SFAs may communicate this timeline to families as well. 

  • P-EBT benefit issuance for current SNAP and TANF EBT cardholders will be complete by June 8, 2020, if their school-aged child was receiving free or reduced-price meals before May 20, 2020. Current SNAP and TANF EBT Cardholders can check their card balance by calling 1-888-328-7366 or using www.connectebt.com.

  • Free and reduced eligible school-aged students that are not SNAP/TANF or those receiving SNAP or TANF that became eligible for free or reduced-price meals after May 20, 2020, while P-EBT cards are being mailed and should be received by the end of June 2020.

The Family’s First Coronavirus Response Act authorized a new benefit called Pandemic EBT to help families with children who are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals. The benefit will come on an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card, which is like a debit card. The benefits can only be spent on food items at any store that accepts SNAP (“food stamps”). P-EBT is a one-time payment that aims to help parents afford food for children who could be receiving free or reduced-price school meals if their schools were open.

 

The federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act of 2020 provides benefits, referred to as Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer (P-EBT), to families of school-aged children who would have otherwise received free or reduced-priced meals if it were not for school closures.

The families at CAP will receive the approximate food benefit amount of $365.00 for each school-aged child in their family.

 

This benefit will be issued in the form of a P-EBT card by the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS).

 

            If you already have an active EBT (SNAP) card, the P-EBT funds will be automatically added to your card. You do not need to do anything for this to occur. 

 

If you do not have an active EBT (SNAP) card and your mailing address is correct in PowerSchool you also do not need to do anything to receive your P-EBT card. If your mailing address is not correct, please provide your current mailing address to ensure the proper delivery of your P-EBT card.

 

The PA Department of Human Services website with information about 'Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer (P-EBT) Supplemental Payments' is: www.dhs.pa.gov/providers/Providers/Pages/Coronavirus-Pandemic-EBT.aspx

 

If you would like to report a specific problem with your P-EBT benefits, such as not receiving the benefit, not receiving for every eligible child, receiving the incorrect amount for a child, or having a lost or damaged P-EBT card, please visit  www.emergencymealsurvey.com/PA.