Governor Lamont announces that 15,000 low-income households with children will receive a special back-to-school and COVID-19 relief benefit on Sunday
Eligible families will automatically receive a payment of $257.87 per child on August 21
(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Ned Lamont announced today that the Connecticut Department of Social Services will provide a special one-time back-to-school COVID-19 relief benefit this weekend of $257.87 per child to more of 15,000 low-income Connecticut households on behalf of 27,000 children.
Known as the Pandemic Emergency Assistance Fund (PEAF), this special benefit comes from a $7 million federal grant the Connecticut Department of Human Services received from the Administration for Children and Families, a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, through the U.S. Bailout Act.
Eligible households include those with children who received benefits under the Temporary Family Assistance (TFA) program in May 2022, or who received benefits under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as food stamps) and had no accounting income in that same month. These PEAF benefits will be automatically sent to eligible households on Sunday, August 21, 2022. The majority of payments will be made to recipients’ Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) cards. Those currently receiving SNAP or TFA benefits through direct deposit will have their PEAF benefits transferred to their bank accounts.
The Department of Social Services this week sent letters to recipients informing them that they will receive this special, one-time benefit.
Governor Lamont explained that his administration was planning the release of these special benefits to coincide with the back-to-school shopping season and the start of Connecticut Sales Tax Free Weekwhich runs from August 21 to August 27, 2022. During this sales tax exemption week, retail purchases of most clothing and footwear priced under $100 are exempt from sales tax and Connecticut Usage.
“Connecticut is the most family-friendly state in the nation, and this unique special benefit puts money back in the pockets of families struggling to make ends meet,” Governor Lamont said. “In the coming months, many of these families will also receive payments from Connecticut’s recently enhanced Income Tax Credit, which is one of the most effective programs for lifting working people out of poverty. These special PEAF benefits are another example of how the American Rescue Plan Act is supporting our nation’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, and I thank President Biden and Congress for their actions in securing this funding. for those who need it.
“These payments, made possible by the U.S. bailout, couldn’t come at a better time for families,” Senator Richard Blumenthal, Senator Chris Murphy, Congressman John Larson, Congressman Joe Courtney, Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro and Congressman Jim Himes said in a joint statement. “Back-to-school shopping is always expensive, and with the rising cost of food, gas and other necessities, Connecticut families are feeling the pressure. We are happy to see that the funding we fought for in Congress is getting to the people who need it most. »
“We are pleased to provide our SNAP and TFA families with this one-time cash benefit in time for back-to-school shopping and Connecticut Duty-Free Shopping Week,” Department of Social Services Commissioner Deidre Gifford said.
These special PEAF benefits are separate from the 2022 Connecticut Child Tax Refund, which is administered by the Connecticut Department of Revenue Services and provides taxpayers with a state tax refund of up to $250 per child for up to three children. Eligible taxpayers who applied for this refund will begin receiving these payments in the coming days. The application period for this program closed at the end of July.
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