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Fox 8 News received the following press release Thursday morning:
BATON ROUGE - The Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) has received word that the USDA has granted its request to extend the Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (DSNAP) for residents of Orleans and Jefferson parishes for an additional two days. The last day to apply for both parishes will now be Saturday, September 15.
DCFS Secretary Suzy Sonnier said that for the extension period, both sites would again utilize the alphabet system. The schedule for UNO and the Alario Center is:
Friday, September 14 - A through M Saturday, September 15 - N through Z
The hours of operation at both sites will be from 6 a.m. until 10 p.m. or when capacity of applicants is reached on site that can be processed by 10 p.m.
The Grand Isle location in Jefferson Parish will follow the same alphabet system -- A through M on Friday and N-Z on Saturday, with hours of operation from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m.
Residents in Orleans Parish should visit the UNO Lakefront Arena. Residents in Jefferson Parish should visit the Alario Center.
DCFS had requested on Tuesday that an extension be granted for seven additional days. USDA had previously granted a two-day extension for the two parishes. The extension was needed due to the large populations of the two parishes and the number of residents applying for DSNAP benefits.
According to federal guidelines, DSNAP sites normally are open for a period of seven days. Operating a DSNAP site beyond seven days requires approval from the United States Department of Agriculture.
To help expedite the application process, individuals can pre-apply for Hurricane Isaac DSNAP either online at www.dcfs.la.gov/preapply or www.getagameplan.org or by calling 1-888-LAHELP-U (888-524-3578) 24 hours a day. When applying by phone, callers should select the appropriate language and then select options 3 and 3.
DSNAP is an income eligibility based program to assist eligible households who do not receive regular SNAP benefits and who need help buying groceries due to lost income or damages following a disaster. Eligibility is determined by federal guidelines and is based on an individual's known or expected income, resources (such as cash on hand, saving and checking account balances) and unreimbursed disaster expenses during the disaster period of August 26 and September 24. For more information on income guidelines visit www.dcfs.la.gov or call 211.
Applicants knowingly providing inaccurate or incomplete information, as part of a DSNAP application, could face criminal prosecution and disqualification of benefits. DCFS will investigate suspected fraud and aggressively pursue recoupment and possibly prosecution.
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