Governor Hochul Signs Legislation Helping Homeless, Disabled and Elderly SNAP Recipients to Purchase …

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Legislation (S.64/A.1524) Creates Statewide Restaurant Meals Program; Mandates OTDA to Apply for USDA Approval so SNAP Recipients Can Purchase Prepared Foods

Once Approved by USDA, Would Help SNAP Recipients to Use Their Benefits for Prepared or Hot Food at Participating Restaurants and Delis

Launches $25 Million Restaurant Resiliency Program, Building on the Successful Nourish New York Initiative, to Provide a Boost to Struggling Restaurants While Feeding Families in Need

Restaurants Can Apply Here for the Resiliency Program Beginning Today

Kathleen Courtney Hochul is an American lawyer and politician serving as the 57th governor of New York since August 2021. A member of the Democratic Party, Hochul is the first female governor of New York.

BROOKLYN, NY — October 10, 2021 —Governor Kathy Hochul had on October 4th signed legislation (S.64/A.1524) establishing a statewide Restaurant Meals Program as part of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP. The legislation mandates the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance to apply for USDA approval to authorize the program, which would allow homeless, elderly and disabled SNAP recipients to use their benefits for prepared or hot food from participating restaurants. Governor Hochul signed this legislation at the Brownsville Recreation Center in Brooklyn, NY on October 4.

The Governor also announced the launch of the $25 million Restaurant Resiliency Program to provide relief to the restaurant industry, which continues to face severe challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic. The program, proposed by the legislature, will build on the successful Nourish New York initiative. It will provide funding to New York’s network of food banks and emergency food providers to purchase prepared meals from New York restaurants and deliver them to families in need.

“It’s unconscionable that in a state as prosperous as New York, many residents still struggle to get enough food to feed their families,” Governor Hochul said. “The vital actions we’re taking—establishing two restaurant programs to help the most vulnerable New Yorkers feed themselves and help restaurants recover from this terrible pandemic—will work in tandem to put food on the table in homes across the state. This pandemic continues to impact the wallets and homes of a vast number of New Yorkers, and we’re taking any and all actions to help them support themselves and their loved ones.”

Lieutenant Governor Brian Benjamin said, “The actions Governor Hochul are taking today make it clear to families and restaurants recovering from COVID that New York State is here for them. Expanding SNAP benefit eligibility to prepared or hot foods at participating restaurants will help feed New York families in need while providing a needed boost to struggling local businesses. Along with the $25 million Restaurant Resiliency program being launched, which I advocated for in the Senate, this will go a long way to furthering our recovery toward a more equitable New York.”

The statewide Restaurant Meals Program, once approved by USDA, would allow SNAP recipients to use their benefits for prepared or hot food from participating restaurants and delis at reduced prices.

Prior to the signing of this legislation, SNAP recipients in New York State could not use their benefits to purchase prepared goods. This prevented many populations that do not have access to cooking or food preparation on their own from using SNAP benefits. This primarily affects the homeless, disabled and elderly populations.

“It’s unconscionable that in a state as prosperous as New York, many residents still struggle to get enough food to feed their families.”

Governor Kathy Hochul

 

Senator Roxanne Persaud, Chair of the Senate Social Services Committee, said, “The legislation being signed today will ultimately result in more hot meal options for elderly, disabled or homeless New Yorkers who either lack basic cooking facilities or are physically unable to prepare food. Food insecurity does not discriminate, and all options must be available for our most vulnerable neighbors. I thank Governor Hochul for signing this important legislation and also for deploying the $25 million Restaurant Resiliency Program funded in this year’s budget.  COVID-19 imperiled food service establishments across New York State; this program will help restaurants help our neighbors facing hunger.”

Assemblymember Karines Reyes said, “The pandemic has significantly increased food insecurity in our state. This threat of food insecurity is something that I have seen in my district and it is even greater for our elderly, disabled and homeless populations. That is why I introduced and worked to pass this bill in the Assembly, so that New York could join the Restaurant Meals Program. It ensures that the most vulnerable recipients of SNAP are accommodated for and can receive prepared or hot food from participating restaurants — all while offering a helping hand to restaurants that are still recovering.”

Assemblymember Robert J. Rodriguez said, “The pandemic shocked the New York State restaurant industry by placing an unprecedented strain on its revenue, as marginalized communities across the state are struggling with food insecurity. In the face of great adversity, restaurant owners created ingenious ways to serve their customers, protect their staff, and feed those in need in their communities.  These efforts have not gone unnoticed, and the Restaurant Revitalization program will give them the resources to continue this work. I am grateful that the State has widened its safety net and ushered in a program that will help restaurants sustain their businesses while meeting the needs of the communities fighting food insecurity and provide meals to the neediest of our neighbors.”

The Restaurant Resiliency Program will award funding, which was passed as part of the 2021-22 New York State Budget, from the New York State Department of Health to New York’s network of ten food banks across the State.  The list of food banks and their award amounts can be found here.

Emergency food providers will work directly with restaurants who are deemed eligible for the program by the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets. They will need to show capacity to create meals aligning with MyPlate.gov  standards, be up to date with licensing requirements, and have passed all health inspections. Participating restaurants are encouraged to use New York ingredients where possible. Additional information and an application for the program can be found here.

Legislation (S.64/A.1524) Creates Statewide Restaurant Meals Program; Mandates OTDA to Apply for USDA Approval so SNAP Recipients Can Purchase Prepared Foods

Once Approved by USDA, Would Help SNAP Recipients to Use Their Benefits for Prepared or Hot Food at Participating Restaurants and Delis

Launches $25 Million Restaurant Resiliency Program, Building on the Successful Nourish New York Initiative, to Provide a Boost to Struggling Restaurants While Feeding Families in Need

Restaurants Can Apply for the Resiliency Program Beginning Today

Restaurants Can Apply Here.

TribuneGovernor Hochul Signs Legislation Helping Homeless, Disabled and Elderly SNAP Recipients to Purchase …

Comments 4

  1. My husband works for Cornell University. He makes 17.84 an hour and paid but-weekly after taxes he brings home 1047 every two weeks. We have custody of our grandson who receives ssi as well as I. After we pay 1550 for rent ,153 for 5 cell phones, 378 car insurance, 350 car payment, 335 car payment, 99.99 internet for our children for school, 30 for granmarly, educational supplies for my grandson who is special needs, minus household supplies 200, minus 200 for food and that leaves us with about a hundred towards gas. I applaud you Go Ernie for the changes but what about families like mines that are struggling to put food in the table. Dss refuse to help us because they calculate what my husband makes before taxes. This needs to change after taxes are taken out what does it really leaves a household. I live Upstate NY where supermarkets have been price gouging since the pandemic started. We have been shopping at the dollar store just to feed our family. We have not been good shopping since November 2019. I don’t know about you but there are working families still struggling to buy the bare utensils. We have kept a roof over our heads during the pandemic which cost us many sacrifices in the end. We know what it feels like to be homeless and hungry now we worry about feeding our family. There are nights I do not eat just to ensure my family eat. I will wait until all their bellies are full and see what’s left and I will eat the straps. When you make changes do it for all not just a set group of individuals or families. This type of change needs to happen for all.
    Shana Hunnicutt

  2. Excellent idea from government, because some of the elderly people don’t like go outside to get their meal. That was a the results from covid’s pandemic.

    People feeling afraid go outside, coronavirus let people’s traumatic live in NYC.

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