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NEW JERSEY (PIX11) – Gov. Phil Murphy on Wednesday signed a bill that nearly doubles the minimum SNAP benefits available to New Jersey residents. 

The bill will ensure that every SNAP household in New Jersey will receive at least $95 in benefits each month.

The federal government began providing emergency food assistance allotments to SNAP households in March 2020 to help people impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. However, these additional benefits are set to end on Feb. 28.

The bill signed by Murphy will raise the minimum SNAP benefit in New Jersey to $95 starting March 1. It’s a $45 increase from the previous $50 SNAP benefit minimum.

“As the federal government’s temporary boost to SNAP benefits comes to an end, we cannot ignore the significant impact this will have on households and communities throughout our state,” Murphy said in a statement. “By implementing a minimum monthly SNAP benefit of $95 for all beneficiaries, New Jersey is leading the nation in ensuring families have the support they need to keep putting food on the table.”

If a New Jersey household is approved for less than $95 in monthly SNAP benefits, they will receive the regular federal benefit plus an additional state supplement to bring them to the $95 minimum.

As emergency federal SNAP allotments come to an end, most households will still see some reduction in their benefits. However, implementing an increased minimum benefit will help soften the impact, according to Murphy.

“With SNAP benefit reductions scheduled to occur at the end of February at the federal level, many New Jerseyans would see their monthly benefits cut nearly in half without this critical legislation,” Senate Majority Leader Ruiz said.