New Jersey increases cash assistance to the poor by 20%

TRENTON, N.J. — New Jersey is boosting cash assistance to some of its poorest residents by 20%.

Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy’s administration announced the increase on Wednesday. Department of Human Services Commissioner Carole Johnson said the administration wants help families “get on the strongest possible financial footing.”

Under the change, a family of three in the WorkFirstNJ welfare program would see benefits payments increase from $466 a month to $559. The increase was included in the budget that Murphy signed into law earlier this summer.

Human Services Department documents show the number of welfare recipients has been trending down.

In May 2019, there were 10,797 cases under WorkFirst NJ, down from 13,515 in May 2018, a drop of about 20%.

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