Sen. Sal DiDomenico recently announced that his amendment providing $5 million for the development of a common application for MassHealth enrollees to more easily access the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) was included as part of the Senate’s General Governmental Bond Bill. DiDomenico has been longtime champion of food security in the Commonwealth and has been filing legislation for years to streamline the process for individuals and families applying for federal SNAP benefits.
“I am very pleased that my amendment was included as a key component of the General Governmental Bond Bill,” said Senator DiDomenico. “As more individuals and families become unemployed and lose private health insurance, they will undoubtedly need both health care and nutritional benefits. This $5M will go a long way towards making the common application I have been advocating for a reality and will play a crucial role in helping to connect people with the food resources they need.”
Senator DiDomenico is the lead sponsor of An Act improving public health through a common application for core food, health and safety-net programs,Êalso known asÊthe SNAP Gap bill. The SNAP Gap refers to the over 700,000 people who are MassHealth recipients and likely eligible for SNAP but are not receiving nutritional benefits. MassHealth and SNAP, as well as many other safety-net programs, use separate application processes that ask for similar information. This duplicates efforts and creates more work for both the state and low-income consumers.
DiDomenico’s bill would create a common application portal to let low-income households apply for MassHealth and SNAP at the same time, thereby consolidating the application process and raising awareness of SNAP eligibility. This bill would help more low-income students access free school meals, increasing food access for over 100,000 Massachusetts elders, and help more families meet their basic needs.