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Texas Disaster Nutrition Assistance

Incident: Hurricane Beryl

When: July 5, 2024

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

  • On July 23, 2024, FNS approved the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) request to modify the mass replacements waiver to impacted households. The initial waiver approved on July 12, 2024, includes the counties of Austin, Brazoria, Chambers, Colorado, Galveston, Grimes, Harris, Liberty, Madison, Matagorda, Montgomery, Polk, San Jacinto, Trinity, Tyler, Walker, Waller and Wharton. This modification waiver approval allows households to receive replacement of SNAP benefits as stated in the approval due to power outages as a result of Hurricane Beryl that made landfall on July 8. The modification waiver approval applies to Fort Bend and Washington counties.
  • On July 17, 2024, FNS approved the Texas HHSC request to waive the statutory definition of "food" under Section 3(k)(1) of the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008, as amended and accompanying regulations at 7 CFR 271.2. This waiver approval allows SNAP households in 36 counties: Angelina, Austin, Brazoria, Calhoun, Chambers, Cherokee, Colorado, Fort Bend, Galveston, Grimes, Hardin, Harris, Houston, Jackson, Jasper, Jefferson, Lavaca, Liberty, Madison, Matagorda, Montgomery, Nacogdoches, Newton, Orange, Polk, Rusk, Sabine, San Augustine, San Jacinto, Shelby, Trinity, Tyler, Victoria, Walker, Waller and Wharton to purchase hot foods with SNAP benefits through Aug. 16, 2024, in order to increase access to food after power outages as a result of Hurricane Beryl that began on July 5, 2024. Retailers may need as much as 24-36 hours to make changes that will allow for sale of hot foods.
  • On July 12, 2024, FNS approved the Texas HHSC request to issue mass replacements to impacted households. This waiver approval allows households to receive replacement of SNAP benefits as stated in the approval due to power outages as a result of Hurricane Beryl that made landfall on July 8. The waiver approval applies to Austin, Brazoria, Chambers, Colorado, Galveston, Grimes, Harris, Liberty, Madison, Matagorda, Montgomery, Polk, San Jacinto, Trinity, Tyler, Walker, Waller and Wharton counties.
  • On July 9, 2024, FNS approved the Texas HHSC request to waive the 10-day reporting requirement for food purchased with SNAP benefits that was lost as a result of severe rain, flooding, and power outages due to Hurricane Beryl that made landfall on July 8, 2024. This waiver allows impacted households additional time to request replacement of SNAP benefits. The waiver applies to 121 counties: Anderson, Angelina, Aransas, Atascosa, Austin, Bastrop, Bee, Bell, Bexar, Bowie, Brazoria, Brazos, Brooks, Burleson, Caldwell, Calhoun, Cameron, Camp, Cass, Chambers, Cherokee, Collin, Colorado, Comal, Dallas, Delta, DeWitt, Dimmit, Duval, Ellis, Falls, Fannin, Fayette, Fort Bend, Franklin, Freestone, Frio, Galveston, Goliad, Gonzales, Grayson, Gregg, Grimes, Guadalupe, Hardin, Harris, Harrison, Hays, Henderson, Hidalgo, Hill, Hopkins, Houston, Hunt, Jackson, Jasper, Jefferson, Jim Hogg, Jim Wells, Karnes, Kaufman, Kenedy, Kinney, Kleberg, Lamar, LaSalle, Lavaca, Lee, Leon, Liberty, Limestone, Live Oak, Madison, Marion, Matagorda, Maverick, McLennan, McMullen, Medina, Milam, Montgomery, Morris, Nacogdoches, Navarro, Newton, Nueces, Orange, Panola, Polk, Rains, Red River, Refugio, Robertson, Rockwall, Rusk, Sabine, San Augustine, San Jacinto, San Patricio, Shelby, Smith, Starr, Titus, Travis, Trinity, Tyler, Upshur, Uvalde, Van Zandt, Victoria, Walker, Waller, Washington, Webb, Wharton, Willacy, Williamson, Wilson, Wood, Zapata and Zavala. The wavier is in effect through Aug. 8, 2024.

The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP)

  • On July 11, 2024, FNS approved the Texas Department of Agriculture to use USDA Foods from The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) to operate disaster household distribution Austin, Brazoria, Brazos, Burleson, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Grimes, Harris, Liberty, Madison, Montgomery, Robertson, San Jacinto, Trinity, Walker, Waller and Washington counties. This request is in response to food assistance needs resulting from Hurricane Beryl due to extensive power outages affecting 2.8 million customers, flooding, downed trees, and road closures. The disaster household distribution food package will be provided to 150,000 individuals beginning on July 11, 2024, through Aug. 10, 2024. The food package will be distributed by the Houston Food Bank’s current distribution method through its network partner agencies. The packages will be household size, and each will contain an allocated number of USDA Foods based on the size of the household. The disaster household package will contain fresh apples, grapes, canned and frozen fruits and vegetables, cheese, meats, nuts, beans, and rice.

     

Incident: Severe Storms and Tornadoes

When: April 26, 2024

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

  • On June 13, 2024, FNS approved the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) amended request to waive the statutory definition of "food" under Section 3(k)(1) of the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008, as amended and accompanying regulations at 7 CFR 271.2. The initial waiver was approved on May 23, 2024, and includes Angelina, Austin, Brazoria, Brown, Calhoun, Callahan, Chambers, Colorado, Comanche, Delta, Eastland, Erath, Fannin, Fayette, Fisher, Fort Bend, Galveston, Grimes, Guadalupe, Hardin, Harris, Haskell, Houston, Jasper, Jefferson, Jones, Lamar, Lavaca, Liberty, Madison, Montgomery, Newton, Nolan, Orange, Palo Pinto, Polk, Red River, Sabine, San Augustine, San Jacinto, Shackelford, Stephen, Stonewall, Taylor, Trinity, Tyler, Walker, Waller, Washington and Wharton counties. The waiver approval was amended on June 3, 2024, to allow SNAP households in the following 29 additional counties: Anderson, Bell, Burnett, Cherokee, Clay, Collin, Cooke, Coryell, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Falls, Freestone, Grayson, Henderson, Hunt, Jack, Kaufman, Lampasas, McLennan, Milam, Montague, Navarro, Rockwall, Smith, Tarrant, Van Zandt, Williamson, and Wise to purchase hot foods with SNAP benefits through June 30, 2024, in order to increase access to food after power outages as a result of severe storms and tornadoes that began April 26, 2024. This amended waiver approval includes Bailey, Brazos, Bosque, Cochran, Gregg, Hale, Hamilton, Hill, Hockley, Johnson, Lamb, Leon, Limestone, Lubbock, Lynn, Rains, Robertson, Rusk, Terrell, Terry, Upshur, Wood, and Yoakum counties and increases the total to 102 counties. The waiver is in effect through June 30, 2024, for these counties.
  • On June 12, 2024, FNS approved the Texas HHSC request to amend the 10-day reporting requirement waiver for food purchased with SNAP benefits that was lost as a result of power outages due to severe storms and tornadoes that began on April 26, 2024. The initial waiver, approved on May 21, 2024, includes the counties of Austin, Chambers, Colorado, Harris, Liberty, Montgomery, Polk, San Jacinto, Trinity, Walker, and Waller. The waiver was amended on May 24, 2024, to include Eastland, Hardin, Jasper, Jones, and Lamar counties. The waiver was amended on June 4, 2024, to include Anderson, Angelina, Bandera, Bastrop, Baylor, Bell, Bexar, Blanco, Bosque, Brazos, Brown, Burleson, Burnet, Caldwell, Calhoun, Cherokee, Clay, Coleman, Collin, Comal, Concho, Cooke, Coryell, Dallas, Delta, Denton, DeWitt, Dickens, Ellis, Falls, Fannin, Fayette, Freestone, Galveston, Gillespie, Gonzales, Gregg, Grimes, Guadalupe, Hamilton, Haskell, Hays, Henderson, Hill, Hockley, Hood, Houston, Hunt, Jefferson, Johnson, Karnes, Kaufman, Kendall, Kerr, Kimble, Knox, Lampasas, Lavaca, Lee, Leon, Limestone, Llano, Lynn, Madison, Mason, McCulloch, McLennan, Medina, Menard, Milam, Mills, Montague, Nacogdoches, Navarro, Newton, Orange, Panola, Robertson, Rockwell, Rusk, Sabine, San Augustine, San Saba, Shelby, Smith, Somervell, Sutton, Tarrant, Travis, Tyler, Van Zandt, Washington, Wichita, Williamson, and Wilson counties. This amended waiver approval includes Bailey, Bowie, Cass, Midland, Red River, and Terrell counties and increases the total to 117 counties. The waiver is in effect through June 30, 2024, for these counties.
  • On June 4, 2024, FNS approved the Texas HHSC request to amend the 10-day reporting requirement waiver for food purchased with SNAP benefits that was lost as a result of power outages due to severe storms and tornadoes that began on April 26, 2024. The initial waiver, approved on May 21, 2024, includes the counties of Austin, Chambers, Colorado, Harris, Liberty, Montgomery, Polk, San Jacinto, Trinity, Walker, and Waller. The waiver was amended on May 24, 2024, to include Eastland, Hardin, Jasper, Jones, and Lamar counties. This amended waiver approval includes Anderson, Angelina, Bandera, Bastrop, Baylor, Bell, Bexar, Blanco, Bosque, Brazos, Brown, Burleson, Burnet, Caldwell, Calhoun, Cherokee, Clay, Coleman, Collin, Comal, Concho, Cooke, Coryell, Dallas, Delta, Denton, DeWitt, Dickens, Ellis, Falls, Fannin, Fayette, Freestone, Galveston, Gillespie, Gonzales, Gregg, Grimes, Guadalupe, Hamilton, Haskell, Hays, Henderson, Hill, Hockley, Hood, Houston, Hunt, Jefferson, Johnson, Karnes, Kaufman, Kendall, Kerr, Kimble, Knox, Lampasas, Lavaca, Lee, Leon, Limestone, Llano, Lynn, Madison, Mason, McCulloch, McLennan, Medina, Menard, Milam, Mills, Montague, Nacogdoches, Navarro, Newton, Orange, Panola, Robertson, Rockwell, Rusk, Sabine, San Augustine, San Saba, Shelby, Smith, Somervell, Sutton, Tarrant, Travis, Tyler, Van Zandt, Washington, Wichita, Williamson, and Wilson counties. This waiver approval increases the total to 111 counties and is in effect through June 30, 2024, for these counties.
  • On June 3, 2024, FNS approved the Texas HHSC amended request to waive the statutory definition of "food" under Section 3(k)(1) of the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008, as amended and accompanying regulations at 7 CFR 271.2. The initial waiver was approved on May 23, 2024, and includes Angelina, Austin, Brazoria, Brown, Calhoun, Callahan, Chambers, Colorado, Comanche, Delta, Eastland, Erath, Fannin, Fayette, Fisher, Fort Bend, Galveston, Grimes, Guadalupe, Hardin, Harris, Haskell, Houston, Jasper, Jefferson, Jones, Lamar, Lavaca, Liberty, Madison, Montgomery, Newton, Nolan, Orange, Palo Pinto, Polk, Red River, Sabine, San Augustine, San Jacinto, Shackelford, Stephen, Stonewall, Taylor, Trinity, Tyler, Walker, Waller, Washington and Wharton counties. This waiver approval allows SNAP households in the additional 29 counties: Anderson, Bell, Burnett, Cherokee, Clay, Collin, Cooke, Coryell, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Falls, Freestone, Grayson, Henderson, Hunt, Jack, Kaufman, Lampasas, McLennan, Milam, Montague, Navarro, Rockwall, Smith, Tarrant, Van Zandt, Williamson, and Wise to purchase hot foods with SNAP benefits through June 30, 2024, in order to increase access to food after power outages as a result of severe storms and tornadoes that began April 26, 2024. This waiver approval increases the total to 79 counties.
  • On May 24, 2024, FNS approved the Texas HHSC request to amend the 10-day reporting requirement waiver for food purchased with SNAP benefits that was lost as a result of power outages due to severe storms and tornadoes that began on April 26, 2024. The initial waiver, approved on May 21, 2024, includes the counties of Austin, Chambers, Colorado, Harris, Liberty, Montgomery, Polk, San Jacinto, Trinity, Walker, and Waller. This amended waiver approval includes Eastland, Hardin, Jasper, Jones and Lamar counties. The waiver is in effect through June 17, 2024.
  • On May 23, 2024, FNS approved the Texas HHSC request to waive the statutory definition of "food" under Section 3(k)(1) of the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008, as amended and accompanying regulations at 7 CFR 271.2. This waiver approval allows SNAP households in 50 counties: Angelina, Austin, Brazoria, Brown, Calhoun, Callahan, Chambers, Colorado, Comanche, Delta, Eastland, Erath, Fannin, Fayette, Fisher, Fort Bend, Galveston, Grimes, Guadalupe, Hardin, Harris, Haskell, Houston, Jasper, Jefferson, Jones, Lamar, Lavaca, Liberty, Madison, Montgomery, Newton, Nolan, Orange, Palo Pinto, Polk, Red River, Sabine, San Augustine, San Jacinto, Shackelford, Stephen, Stonewall, Taylor, Trinity, Tyler, Walker, Waller, Washington and Wharton to purchase hot foods with SNAP benefits through June 30, 2024, in order to increase access to food after power outages as a result of severe storms and tornadoes that began April 26, 2024. Retailers may need as much as 24-36 hours to make changes that will allow for sale of hot foods.
  • On May 21, 2024, FNS approved the Texas HHSC request to waive the 10-day reporting requirement for food purchased with SNAP benefits that was lost as a result of power outages due to severe storms and tornadoes that began on April 26, 2024. The waiver approval applies Austin, Chambers, Colorado, Harris, Liberty, Montgomery, Polk, San Jacinto, Trinity, Walker and Waller counties. The waiver is in effect through June 17, 2024.

The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP)

  • On May 23, 2024, FNS approved the Texas Department of Agriculture request to use USDA Foods from The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) to operate disaster household distribution in Harris, Liberty, Matagorda, Montgomery, San Jacinto, Trinity, Walker, and Waller counties. This request is in response to food assistance needs resulting from a major disaster declaration due to severe weather, flooding, extended power outages and road closures. The disaster household distribution food package will be provided to 600,000 individuals beginning on May 24, 2024, and will be distributed by Houston Food Bank’s current distribution method through its network partner agencies. The packages will be household size, and each will contain an allocated number of USDA Foods based on the size of the household. The disaster household package will contain fresh apples, grapefruit, oranges, canned and frozen fruits and vegetables, milk, frozen meats, nuts, cheese, beans, and rice.

 

Past Responses

2023

Incident: Severe Storms and Tornadoes

When: June 21, 2023

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

  • On June 29, 2023, FNS approved the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) request to waive the 10-day reporting requirement for food purchased with SNAP benefits that was lost as a result of power outages due to severe storms and tornadoes that began on June 21, 2023. The waiver request applies to residents of Motley County and is in effect through July 20, 2023.

 

Incident: Severe Storms and Tornadoes

When: June 14, 2023

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

  • On June 22, 2023, FNS approved the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) request to waive the 10-day reporting requirement for food purchased with SNAP benefits that was lost as a result of power outages due to severe storms and tornadoes that began on June 14, 2023. The waiver request applies to residents in the following 12 counties: Camp, Cass, Franklin, Gregg, Harrison, Marion, Morris, Ochiltree, Panola, Titus, Upshur and Wood. The waiver is in effect through July 14, 2023.

 

Incident: Severe Storms

When: Feb. 1, 2023

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

  • On Feb. 6, 2023, FNS approved the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) request to waive the 10-day reporting requirement for replacement of food purchased with SNAP benefits that was lost as a result of power outages due to a severe winter storm that began on Feb. 1, 2023. The waiver request applies to the 67 counties of Anderson, Austin, Bandera, Bastrop, Bell, Bexar, Blanco, Brazoria, Brooks, Burleson, Burnet, Caldwell, Cameron, Cherokee, Coke, Collin, Comal, Concho, Coryell, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Erath, Falls, Fannin, Fort Bend, Franklin, Freestone, Gillespie, Harris, Hays, Henderson, Hidalgo, Hill, Hopkins, Hunt, Irion, Johnson, Kaufman, Kendall, Kerr, Kimble, Lamar, Lee, Leon, Limestone, Llano, Mason, McLennan, Milam, Montgomery, Navarro, Parker, Rains, Red River, Robertson, Rockwall, Smith, Sterling, Tarrant, Titus, Travis, Van Zandt, Waller, Wichita, Williamson, and Wood. The waiver is in effect through Feb. 28, 2023.
2021

Incident: Severe Storms

When: Feb. 11, 2021

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

  • On Feb. 24, 2021, FNS approved Texas’ request to issue mass replacements to impacted households. This waiver allows households to receive replacement of SNAP benefits in 66 counties as a result of the winter storms and power outages that began on Feb. 11, 2021. On Feb. 23, 2021, FNS approved Texas’s request to waive timely reporting of food loss for households to all counties in the state. This waiver allows affected households to make a request for replacement of SNAP benefits through March 31, 2021, as a result of the severe winter storms that began on Feb. 11, 2021.
  • On Feb. 21, 2021, FNS approved Texas request to waive the statutory definition of "food" under Section 3(k)(1) of the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008, as amended, and companion regulations at 7 CFR 271.2., due to the Severe Winter Storms that began on Feb. 11, 2021. The waiver applies to the entire state of Texas. This waiver approval will allow SNAP households to purchase hot foods with SNAP benefits through March 31, 2021.
2020

Incident: Hurricane Laura

When: Aug. 22, 2020

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

  • On Sept. 10, 2020, FNS approved Texas’s request to waive timely reporting of food loss allowing households in 43 counties to request replacement of SNAP benefits through Sept. 30, 2020.
  • On Sept. 10, 2020, FNS approved Texas’s request to issue mass replacements to impacted households in eight counties. This waiver approval allows affected households in those counties to receive replacement of a percentage of their SNAP benefit based on their issuance date.

Disaster Household Distribution Program

  • On Aug. 31, 2020, FNS approved Texas’s use of USDA Foods from TEFAP for a disaster household distribution program. The disaster food package was provided to 9,000 individuals through the Texas Department of Agriculture’s network of distribution sites in Orange County from Sept. 1, 2020 through Sept. 22, 2020 or until such time as D-SNAP is implemented. Food banks used drive thru and site pick-up models to ensure the safety of those serving and served.

 

Incident: Hurricane Hanna

When: July 25, 2020

  • On July 31, 2020, FNS approved the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) request to waive timely reporting of food loss for households in 32 counties in Texas. This waiver approval allows affected households in those counties to make a request for replacement of SNAP benefits through Aug. 31, 2020.

    FNS also approved HHSC’s request to issue mass replacements to impacted households in the counties of Brooks, Hidalgo, Kenedy, McMullen, Starr and Willacy. This waiver approval allows households in these affected counties to receive replacement of a percentage of their SNAP benefit based on issuance date.
2019

Incident: Severe Storms and Flooding

When: June 24, 2019

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program

  • On July 9, 2019, FNS approved Texas’ request to waive timely reporting of food loss for households in the counties of Cameron, Hidalgo and Willacy. This waiver approval will allow households in these affected counties to make a request for replacement of SNAP benefits through July 31, 2019. These replacement SNAP benefits will allow households to replace food lost due to power outages caused by severe storms and flooding that began on June 24, 2019.

 

Incident: Tornado

When: April 13, 2019

Child Nutrition Programs

  • On May 9, 2019, FNS issued a letter approving two requests for one school district in Texas impacted by a recent tornado. Alto Independent School District (ISD) may serve and claim for reimbursement school lunch and breakfast meals that do not meet the meal pattern requirements, through May 23. Alto ISD is also approved to elect the Community Eligibility Provision using current data through May 23. The state agency reported that Alto ISD has limited food storage capacity and equipment, and that Alto ISD lost its point of service system and back up student eligibility documentation in the tornado. These approvals are expected to help Alto ISD overcome barriers to standard program operations as the district recovers from the tornado.
2017

Incident: Hurricane Harvey

When: Aug. 25, 2017, and continuing

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program

  • FNS approved the Texas Health and Human Services Commission's (HHSC) request to operate a Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (D-SNAP) in 39 counties that were impacted by Hurricane Harvey. The D-SNAP application period began on Wednesday, Sept. 13, 2017, through Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017, in the following 11 counties. Application sites operated from 8 am - 7 pm each day of the application period. Eligible households received 2 months of D-SNAP benefits. Read more information on the D-SNAP application sites.

    Dewitt
    Gonzalez
    Jasper
    Karnes
    Kleberg
    Lavaca
    Matagorda
    Newton
    Orange
    Sabine
    Tyler
  • FNS also approved the state request to issue automatic supplements to ongoing SNAP households in 39 counties that received a presidential declaration of disaster for individual assistance. FNS approved the automatic issuance of 2 months of disaster supplemental benefits. Ongoing SNAP households in other counties affected by Hurricane Harvey that were not included in a presidential declaration of disaster for individual assistance, may have requested disaster supplements on an individual basis via signed affidavit attesting to their disaster losses. Ongoing households already receiving the maximum monthly SNAP allotment for their household size were not eligible for disaster supplements, as no household may receive more than the maximum allotment during the benefit period.
  • On September 1, FNS approved a policy to provide states with flexibility to serve Hurricane Harvey evacuees. States may have chosen to either serve evacuees through expedited SNAP rules or through the simplified program rules in the Evacuee Policy. The Evacuee Policy applies to anyone who at the time of Hurricane Harvey was a resident of a county that received a Presidential Disaster Declaration for Individual Assistance, did not receive SNAP benefits in the month of August 2017, and evacuated to another state that chose to apply the Policy.
  • On September 1, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) issued all September 2017 SNAP benefits to SNAP households in the 29 counties that received a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration.
  • In addition, on September 1, HHSC issued automatic, mass replacement of August 2017 SNAP benefits to SNAP households in the 29 declared counties. The mass replacement benefits were issued to replace food that was purchased with August 2017 SNAP benefits that was destroyed due to the disaster. Replacement benefits were automatically issued to all regular SNAP households in the affected counties, by means of an automated credit to their Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards. Households that had already received replacement benefits based on a signed affidavit of loss were excluded from the mass replacement process.
  • FNS approved the state's request to waive the 10-day reporting requirement for replacement of food purchased with August 2017 SNAP benefits destroyed in the following counties. Affected households had until Sept. 30, 2017, to report food losses to their local offices and request replacement benefits.
  • Angelina
    Aransas
    Atascosa
    Austin
    Bastrop
    Bee
    Bexar
    Brazoria
    Brazos
    Burleson
    Caldwell
    Calhoun
    Cameron
    Chambers
    Colorado
    Comal
    DeWitt
    Fayette
    Fort Bend
    Galveston
    Goliad
    Gonzales
    Grimes
    Guadalupe
    Hardin
    Harris
    Jackson
    Jasper
    Jefferson
    Jim Wells
    Karnes
    Kerr
    Kleberg
    Lavaca
    Lee
    Leon
    Liberty
    Live Oak
    Madison
    Matagorda
    Montgomery
    Newton
    Nueces
    Orange
    Polk
    Refugio
    Sabine
    San Jacinto
    San Patricio
    Trinity
    Tyler
    Victoria
    Walker
    Waller
    Washington
    Wharton
    Willacy
    Wilson
  • FNS approved an extension of the state’s hot foods waiver to allow households to continue to purchase hot foods and hot food products prepared for immediate consumption with their SNAP EBT benefits at SNAP authorized retailers through Oct. 31, 2017. The extension applied to all SNAP authorized retail food stores in Texas.
  • FNS approved the state’s hot foods’ waiver request to allow recipients to purchase hot foods and hot food products prepared for immediate consumption with their benefits at authorized SNAP retailers statewide through Sept. 30, 2017.
  • On Aug. 31, FNS approved the Texas Health and Human Services Commission's (HHSC) request to allow HHSC to extend certification periods for SNAP households in the below 58 affected counties with certification periods expiring in August, September, or October 2017, by 6 months; any case originally scheduled for recertification in August, September, or October 2017, must now be recertified in February, March, or April 2018, respectively.
  • On August 31, FNS approved the state's request to allow HHSC to waive the periodic reporting requirements for households in the below 58 affected counties due to report in August, September, or October 2017, to provide administrative relief to HHSC in the short term as the state recovers from the disaster, as well as provide disaster-affected households additional time to report. The 58 affected counties include:

    Angelina
    Aransas
    Atascosa
    Austin
    Bastrop
    Bee
    Bexar
    Brazoria
    Brazos
    Burleson
    Caldwell
    Calhoun
    Cameron
    Chambers
    Colorado
    Comal
    DeWitt
    Fayette
    Fort Bend
    Galveston
    Goliad
    Gonzales
    Grimes
    Guadalupe
    Hardin
    Harris
    Jackson
    Jasper
    Jefferson
    Jim Wells
    Karnes
    Kerr
    Kleberg
    Lavaca
    Lee
    Leon
    Liberty
    Live Oak
    Madison
    Matagorda
    Montgomery
    Newton
    Nueces
    Orange
    Polk
    Refugio
    Sabine
    San Jacinto
    San Patricio
    Trinity
    Tyler
    Victoria
    Walker
    Waller
    Washington
    Wharton
    Willacy
    Wilson

Texas Health and Human Services' Website

USDA Foods

  • FNS approved Texas to operate a Disaster Household Distribution program to address immediate food needs. Packages containing USDA Food were distributed by local feeding organizations to over 23,000 households beginning Sept. 8, 2017, for up to four weeks.
  • FNS approved a waiver to allow distribution of August 2017 Commodity Supplemental Food Program food packages in September 2017, as retroactive benefits. In September, participants may have received two CSFP food packages – an August food package and a September food package (e.g., a two month supply of food). This approval applied to the Houston and Beaumont food banks, and included all distribution sites identified to FNS as impacted by the disaster.
  • Texas and The Salvation Army used USDA Foods to prepare and serve 100,000 meals to those in need.
  • FNS informed Texas that it can use The Emergency Food Assistance Program USDA Foods to provide meals at food pantries and soup kitchens for people in need who cannot reach larger disaster feeding organizations but who are able to gather at small local organizations to eat.

Child Nutrition Programs

  • On May 11, 2018, FNS approved the Texas Department of Agriculture’s request to extend a Hurricane Harvey related waiver for Little Cypress-Mauriceville CISD. Little Cypress-Mauriceville CISD was allowed to serve lunch meals that did not meet the National School Lunch Program meal pattern requirements from April 1 through June 1, 2018.
  • On Feb. 1, FNS approved the Texas Department of Agriculture's request to extend two Hurricane Harvey related waivers to one school district that operates the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program. Schools in Little Cypress-Mauriceville CISD was allowed to serve all meals to children at no charge and to claim all meals at the Free Reimbursable Rate, through March 31, 2018. Schools in Little Cypress-Mauriceville CISD were allowed to continue to serve meals that do not meet the NSLP and SBP meal pattern requirements through March 31, 2018.
  • On Dec. 27, FNS approved Texas’ request to extend a limited number of Hurricane Harvey related waivers to schools in five school districts. The five school districts are: Aldine ISD, Bloomington ISD, Humble ISD, Little Cypress-Mauriceville CISD, and Sheldon ISD. Schools in Bloomington ISD and Little Cypress-Mauriceville CISD may continue to serve meals that do not meet the menu planning or meal pattern requirements through March 2, 2018. Schools in Sheldon ISD may continue to serve meals that do not meet the menu planning or meal pattern requirements through Jan. 12, 2018. Schools in Little Cypress-Mauriceville CISD and Sheldon ISD may continue to serve all meals to students at no charge and to claim all meals at the Free Reimbursable Rate, through Jan.31, 2018 and Jan. 12, 2018, respectively. Schools in Little Cypress-Mauriceville CISD, Aldine ISD, Humble ISD, and Sheldon ISD may continue to allow two schools to utilize the same locations and claim separately as necessary.
  • On October 27, FNS approved Texas’ request to extend Hurricane Harvey related waivers to schools in 12 counties that were set to expire on Oct. 31, 2017. These waivers applied to schools, child care institutions and facilities who operated the NSLP, SBP, and CACFP. The 12 counties were: Brazoria, Calhoun, Arkansas, Hardin, Harris, Jefferson, Nueces, Orange, San Patricio, Victoria, Refugio, and Chambers. The state may have used its discretion in providing the flexibilities to certain school districts within the 12 counties on a case-by-case basis. Students in these areas in Texas may have continued to receive free school meals through the National School Lunch Program through Dec. 31, 2017. Schools also may have continued to serve meals through Dec. 31, 2017, that did not meet the menu planning or meal pattern requirements for schools and institutions in these affected areas. Other flexibilities included: waiving meal service times for NSLP, SBP, and CACFP; allowing two schools to utilize the same location and claim meals separately through NSLP and SBP; and waivers and extensions of timelines related to administrative and operational activities.
  • On September 22, FNS approved several requests from Texas related to the National School Lunch Program and the School Breakfast Program:
  • FNS is allowing affected schools participating in the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) for school year 2017-2018 to recalculate their Identified Student Percentage (ISP). Typically, the ISP must be calculated by April 1 of the prior year. Being able to calculate a new ISP can capture expected increases in numbers of students participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or designated as homeless youth, as a result of Tropical Storm Harvey. Schools using this option will have to recalculate their ISP on April 1, 2018.
  • FNS also approved Texas’ request to extend Hurricane Harvey related waivers in 22 counties that are set to expire on September 30th. These waivers applied to schools, child care institutions and facilities who operated the NSLP, SBP, Child and Adult Care Food Program, Summer Food Service Program, and the Seamless Summer Option (State Systems Office).
    • The 22 counties were: Bee, Brazoria, Calhoun, Aransas, Galveston, Hardin, Harris, Jasper, Jefferson, Liberty, Matagorda, Newton, Nueces, Orange, San Patricio, Tyler, Victoria, Refugio, Chambers, Jackson, Wharton, and Fort Bend.
    • These waivers were previously approved by FNS on either August 29, August 30 or August 31.
      • All students in these 22 counties in TX will continue to receive free school meals through the NSLP through October 31. Schools will be reimbursed at the free rate for all meals served.
      • FNS also continued to provide more flexibility to schools in what they could feed kids, and when, given the challenges of preparing specific foods during this period. Therefore, schools could continue to serve meals through October 31 that did not meet the menu planning or meal pattern requirements for schools and institutions in these affected areas.
      • The state provided schools the option to operate the State Systems Office during the school year when schools had unanticipated closures. Additionally, FNS allowed Texas to waive the area eligibility requirements for CACFP, SFSP, and the State Systems Office.
      • In the 22 counties, Texas may have allowed operators of the SFSP to send food home with children, instead of eating it onsite in a congregate setting.
      • Other flexibilities included: allowing two schools to utilize the same location and claim meals separately through NSLP and SBP; and waivers and extensions of timelines related to administrative and operational activities.
  • On September 5, FNS approved Texas’ request to have more time for, or put on hold, deadlines related to appeals from Child Nutrition operators related to fiscal or other adverse actions. This will give the state relief in focusing on more time-sensitive issues in the present time, and allow all parties to have additional time for the process. This approval is effective through Dec. 31, 2017.
  • FNS approved additional requests from the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) for waivers or program flexibilities to program requirements of the NSLP, SBP, SFSP, CACFP, and the CSFP, including:
  1. Approval to implement non-congregate feeding through the NSLP's State Systems Office and the SFSP, as needed, with prior notification to the FNS Southwest Regional Office
  2. Approval to allow two schools to utilize the same location and claim meals separately through the NSLP and SBP. The site may not exceed the maximum number of meals allowed under regulation.
  3. Approval of a waiver of the timeliness for submission of corrective actions from areas in which TDA has received notification of postal service interruption. Instead, for corrective action due through Sept. 30, 2017, the state agency had discretion in establishing longer corrective action timelines on a case-by-case-basis.
  4. Approval to waive the area eligibility requirements for the SFSP, Seamless Summer Option, and the at-risk afterschool meals component of CACFP through Sept. 30, 2017.
  • On August 29, FNS approved the state's request for waivers or program flexibilities in NSLP, SBP, SFSP, CACFP, and the CSFP. The approvals allowed all schools and child care institutions and facilities in declared disaster counties to waive meal pattern requirements through Sept. 30, 2017; and, schools in affected counties, including those currently participating in the Community Eligibility Provision, to provide meals at no charge to students and be reimbursed for all meals served at the Free reimbursable rate through Sept. 30, 2017.

Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC)

  • On September 3, FNS approved the state's request to substitute certain WIC-approved food items (fluid milk, bread and eggs) through Sept. 24, 2017, due to regional demand and supply chain disruptions caused by Hurricane Harvey.

Texas Department of Agriculture's Nutrition Assistance Programs' Website
If you think you may be eligible for disaster food assistance in your state, please contact your local state office.

Page updated: July 24, 2024