COVID-19 and P-EBT Benefits

— Written By and last updated by Abi Reid
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COVID-19 and P-EBT
The Families First Coronavirus Response Act of 2020 provides the Secretary of Agriculture authority to approve State agency plans for temporary emergency standards of eligibility and levels of benefits under the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008. Families who receive free or reduced-price meals will receive Pandemic EBT (P-EBT) benefits under the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act due to school closure.
The State proposes to provide P-EBT benefits to FNS and non-FNS households with children who have temporarily lost access to free or reduced-price school meals due to pandemic related school closures. These households are eligible for P-EBT because they:
  • Include an eligible child or children, who if not for the closure of their school during a public health emergency designation and due to concerns about a COVID-19 outbreak, would receive free or reduced-price school meals under the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act, as amended, and
  • The child’s school or district will be (or has been) closed for at least 5 consecutive days during a public health emergency designation and due to concerns about a COVID-19 outbreak.
NC DHHS will issue P-EBT benefits based on the number of days schools were closed in a given month, multiplied by the daily reimbursement rate for a free breakfast and a free lunch. Based on averages the estimate of amounts issued are as follows:
  • March 16, 2020 through April 30, 2020 equals 34 school days X $5.70 per day = $194 per child.
  • May 1, 2020 through June 12, 2020 equals 31 days X $5.70 per day = $177 per child.
The first issuance (34 days) is targeted for the weeks of:
  • May 12, 2020 for existing FNS households.
  • May 13, 2020 for non-FNS households.
  • The second issuance (31 days) is targeted for early June.