SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – New Mexico families will receive more than $45 million in additional food
benefits, enough to feed almost 244,000 vulnerable children, following federal approval
of the state’s amended Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer Program for August and
September according to a news release. The benefit will be added to existing P-EBT cards by early October.
“The Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer program is an important way to ensure that children
will get the nutrition they need, especially when students are studying remotely during the
COVID-19 pandemic,” said Human Services Sec. Dr. David R. Scrase, in the same news release “We are working hard with the Public Education Department to get these benefits out to families as quickly as possible.”
According to a news release, those who qualify but don’t have an existing P-EBT card will be issued one with the new benefit. That process could take weeks. The retroactive benefit for an estimated 243,661 children who qualify for free or reduced-price meals is meant to offset meals missed because their schools were in the remote learning mode in August and September. New Mexico households with children who receive free or reduced-price meals will receive benefits of $5.86 per child per day for the period their individual school site was 100% virtual until the day their school site instituted a hybrid model.
“My administration will continue to work as hard as we can to ensure New Mexicans have
every available resource during this public health crisis,” said Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham in the same news release. “Food benefits are a lifeline. The state of New Mexico will continue to deliver as much as we can for children and working families all across the state.”
The Human Services Department said they have two hotlines for individuals to inquire about the
status of their P-EBT benefits. Individuals can call the Human Services Department Customer Service Center is 1-800-283-4465 or they can call the P-EBT Hotline at 505-660-4822.