Category: Federal Budget

New SNAP College Eligibility Criteria

In February 2021 the USDA shared important updates regarding student eligibility for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), due to the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021. This act temporarily expands SNAP eligibility to students in higher education enrolled at least part time. The new requirements now extend eligibility to students who: “are eligible to participate in state or federally financed work study...

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Administration Releases New Guidance for Emergency Rental Assistance Program

  The U.S. Department of the Treasury released guidelines and a new FAQ to help states and communities quickly distribute more than $25 billion in emergency rental assistance to renters in need.  The revised FAQ  directly addresses the significant flaws in the guidance issued by the previous administration. Pennsylvania’s rental assistance program, whose administration has been moved to...

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ELCA 2021 federal policy priorities for advocacy action

Posted on January 22, 2021 by ELCA Advocacy “With the start of the 117th Congress and a new administration, and as the devastating COVID-19 pandemic influences our lives and shapes our concerns, we face pressing need for national policy action. Yet even with changes, as Christians in the world our engagement is consistently shaped by...

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Commonwealth and Nation Face Housing Crisis: ELCA Congregations Respond

“God heard the cry of a homeless people and delivered them out of oppression in Egypt. Jesus, “who [had] nowhere to lay his head” (Luke 9:58), ministered with compassion to the poor and vulnerable. In practicing hospitality, we are promised to encounter the living Lord: “I was a stranger and you welcomed me” (Matthew 25:35). ...

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United Way of PA Updates ALICE Reports

United Way of Pennsylvania’s new fact sheets by Senate and House districts show how many ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) families are struggling to afford child care across the Commonwealth. ALICE accounts for the 1.8 million households earning a wage more than the federal poverty level but still struggling to maintain a basic household...

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Gov. Wolf Announces New Funding Available to Protect Homeless Pennsylvanians During COVID-19 Resurgence 

Gov. Tom Wolf announced that nearly $20 million is now available to assist Pennsylvanians currently experiencing homelessness. The commonwealth received its second allocation of federal COVID-19 Homeless Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG-CV) funds, and the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) has set aside a portion of those funds to be used toward emergency shelter...

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Bishop Eaton Shares Post Election Message

Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton speaks to the church about the election in a video message. The following is the video transcript: Today, the uncertainty of this election is causing anxiety and stress for many, not only in our church, but also across our nation and around the world.  Even...

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CARES Rental/Mortgage Assistance Application Deadline Draws Near

The deadline for the Pennsylvania COVID-19 rental and mortgage assistance relief program is quickly approaching. The November 4 deadline will pass with the PA Senate failing to pass a bill (HB 2868) to make the application process more tenable. This inaction impacts thousands of Commonwealth residents who struggle daily to feed their families and determine...

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ELCA Provides Worship Resources for a National Election

Many of us feel pulled to prayer in the lead up to the election. The new ELCA Worship resource, “Worship Resources for a National Election” contains crafted prayers and suggestions for sacred music to guide worship, prayer, vigils, and devotions preceding or following the election. These resources are offered in PDF and Word formats, to...

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U.S. Supreme Court Renders PA Election Ballot Decision

The U.S. Supreme Court rendered a decision Monday that will allow Pennsylvania to count mailed-in ballots received up to three days after the Nov. 3 election. The justices were divided 4-4, an outcome that upholds a state Supreme Court ruling that required county election officials to receive and count mailed-in ballots that arrive up until...

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