Temporary fix allows SNAP use at farmers markets to continue

9 months 1 week 5 days ago Friday, August 10 2018 Aug 10, 2018 Friday, August 10, 2018 2:22:00 PM CDT August 10, 2018 in News
By: Monica Harkins, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - A temporary fix will allow the Columbia Farmers Market to continue offering SNAP transactions for six months. 

The market uses Novo Dia Group's MarketLink app to process SNAP, or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, users' electronic benefit transaction, or EBT, cards each week. 

Columbia Farmers Market executive director Corrina Smith said, "It's like Square or Paypal. It's just an app where we can swipe an [EBT] card."

Novo Dia Group announced on July 2 it would end its app program at the end of July. That would have left the farmers market, and hundreds of others across the U.S. who use the app, without a way to service SNAP users.

Farmer's Market Coalition said Novo Dia Group is the largest supplier of SNAP payment processing equipment to farmers markets in the country. More than 1,700 - or 40 percent - of farmers markets and farmers that accept SNAP are currently customers.

Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York announced July 27 his state and the Farmers Market Federation of New York reached an agreement with Novo Dia Group to keep the app running until February 2019.

This is the second temporary fix to save the app.

National Association of Farmers' Market Nutrition Programs was the first group to provide a temporary fix. It extended support to keep the app running until the end of August.

Smith said this all goes back to the USDA who got the app up and running for farmers markets.

In 2013, the USDA decided to provide grants to fund wireless equipment for SNAP transactions across the United States. Novo Dia Group's MarketLink app service is one contractor that received grant money.

The USDA said the grant is meant for start-up costs and does not cover long-term costs of operating the mobile equipment or subsidize the service provider.

In March, the USDA said through a competitive selection process it awarded a different contractor grant money, not Novo Dia Group.

"We have over two thousand dollars in equipment that if that program ended at the end of July, we couldn't use it," Smith said.

She said the new funding from New York is a better solution providing more time, but the issue will resurface in February. Smith said she's going to have to stay alert as time counts down.

"Just make sure this is not going to end, so we’re not in the same situation we were in a couple weeks ago - having no idea what we were going to do or if our equipment was going to work," Smith said.

SNAP transactions at Columbia Farmers Market brought in about $82,000 for Columbia Farmers Market farmers last year, including dollar matching programs, Smith said.

"It’s a win-win solution for everybody because it’s not only helping these families get access to healthy food, it’s also helping our local farmers and our local economy," Smith said.

She said now she can only be hopeful that a permanent solution can be implemented. 

In a statement a spokesperson for the USDA told KOMU 8 News, "Since learning of Novo Dia’s decision earlier this month, the Food and Nutrition Service has been exploring all available options in an attempt to avoid a disruption in mobile EBT payments at farmers markets."

More News

Grid
List
During the chaos of the tornado in Jefferson City, one cheerleading and "American Ninja Warrior" gym got torn apart. The... More >>
2 hours ago Friday, May 24 2019 May 24, 2019 Friday, May 24, 2019 12:15:00 AM CDT May 24, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Students who visited the Simonsen Ninth Grade Center in Jefferson City Thursday said it is heartbreaking to... More >>
5 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 9:17:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Missouri's U.S. Senators both voted yes Thursday on a disaster aid bill that includes fresh resources for farms... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 5:38:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Businesses and charities in and around Jefferson City have stepped forward to help people who were affected... More >>
9 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 5:02:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Residents of the eastern part of Jefferson City spent much of Thursday cleaning debris. Andrew Buchanan,... More >>
11 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 2:40:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - An all-out cleanup effort is underway in Jefferson City, where fallen roofs, busted windows, scattered trees and downed... More >>
12 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 2:15:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Initial assessments show the tornado that swept through part of Jefferson City Wednesday night had winds as... More >>
13 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 1:23:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - University of Missouri Police are thanking the public for help locating a man who went missing while being... More >>
14 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 12:26:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Several people in the Jefferson City area will remain without power for several days. Three Rivers Electric... More >>
14 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 12:14:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
ELDON - The Eldon Police Department is continuing to sort through the catastrophic tornado aftermath around the city. Many... More >>
16 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 10:33:00 AM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The University of Missouri lending assistance on several fronts to help people affected by Wednesday night's tornado in... More >>
16 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 9:54:00 AM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The damage and complications from Wednesday's tornado has led to a number of school, government and business... More >>
16 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 9:41:05 AM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The American Red Cross has opened several shelters following Wednesday's damaging tornado. The shelters are at... More >>
17 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 8:42:00 AM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Governor Mike Parson took time to thank first responders at a press conference in Jefferson City Thursday... More >>
19 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 6:57:00 AM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
LAKE OF THE OZARKS -- Missouri State Highway Patrol is all hands on deck monitoring the severe weather effects that... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 7:27:00 PM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
MEXICO - Missouri Military Academy has brought back its baseball team for the first time in five years. A... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 5:50:00 PM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – Three campers were evacuated on Tuesday at the Mari-Osa Delta campground due to flooding. Patrick Duncan,... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 5:39:00 PM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
MONITEAU COUNTY - People in Moniteau County are cleaning up extensive damage after storms came rushing through Tuesday night. ... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 1:26:00 PM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 70°
3am 70°
4am 69°
5am 68°
6am 67°