Georgia strives to address program backlogs as over 34,600 SNAP applications remain overdue

Georgia is still dealing with a backlog of thousands of overdue applications and renewals for food stamps. However, the state is working diligently to make progress and address this backlog.

Progress is being made in addressing the severe issues identified by federal officials in Georgia’s management of nutrition assistance programs. However, there are still thousands of applications awaiting review after seven months.

The Georgia Department of Human Services has recently reported that there are over 34,600 pending applications for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), awaiting approval or rejection. Additionally, there are more than 850 renewal applications that are also pending.

Federal officials from the U.S. Department of Agriculture initially directed the Georgia DHS to resolve the backlog in November. As reported by Channel 2 Action News, the timeliness of processing applications, which refers to the speed at which applications are reviewed, did not meet federal requirements.

State officials have been diligently addressing the program backlogs, resulting in a decline in the APT rate, which fell to 69.75 in December. The Food and Nutrition Service mandates a minimum APT score of 95, although they do accept a score of 90.

There are currently 34,653 applications that officials say are still overdue, along with an additional 855 renewals that are also overdue.

There are still over 35,500 cases that need to be addressed.

DHS, however, is actively addressing the issues and allocating additional resources to address the ongoing backlog of cases.

According to a statement from a spokesperson for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to Channel 2 Action News, various strategies have been employed to address this issue and provide support to our workers in completing their tasks more efficiently. These include utilizing overtime and stipends for our staff, as well as implementing regular reporting. A dedicated team of workers has been specifically assigned to tackle the renewal backlog, and now that the majority of it has been resolved, these workers are being redirected to focus on processing applications.

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