- Associated Press - Saturday, January 19, 2019

PHOENIX (AP) - Arizonans who receive food stamps are getting their February benefits early because of the federal government’s partial shutdown, and state officials want recipients to know they won’t be getting additional benefits during February.

The state Department of Economic Security says the early distribution of February benefits under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program to nearly 320,000 families during a four-day period ending Sunday comes under guidance from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The state’s announcement of the early distribution says the partial shutdown risked interrupting the distribution of the federally funded benefits to states.

The announcement also says the earlier distribution provides “a household’s February SNAP benefits and not additional benefits,” and the state advises recipients to budget their benefits to provide for their family’s food needs through all of February.

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