Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

The Alaska Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program provides food benefits to low-income households. The federal government funds 100% of the SNAP benefit. The State pays half the costs of operating the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program in Alaska.

The Division of Public Assistance issues SNAP benefits via the Alaska Quest card. The amount a household receives each month depends on the household's countable income and size of the household. Eligible households use SNAP benefits to buy food products from authorized stores statewide.

Eligible applicants must pass income and assets tests. The gross monthly income test is based on 130% of the current Alaska poverty standard.

Alaska has special rules that allow for higher SNAP benefits in rural areas, and the use of benefits to purchase certain hunting and fishing subsistence supplies.

  • New item iconSupplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Emergency Allotments
    The division received approval from the federal Food and Nutrition Service to distribute October and November emergency allotments (EA) for SNAP recipients. Approval of SNAP EA is based on a public health emergency declaration by the secretary of Health and Human Services and a state-issued emergency or disaster declaration. EA helps households meet temporary food needs during the public health emergency by providing the maximum monthly benefit for their household size and allows all households to receive at least $95 monthly in EA.

    The division will process October and November benefits for eligible households during November. Due to the complexity and manual work involved in processing EA, it is likely that benefits will not be fully processed for these months until December.

    SNAP recipients can contact our Virtual Contact Center at 800-478-7778 with any questions about the EA or status of their case.

Learn more about the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program:


Requirements for Eligibility

Residency. Applicants must be residents of the State of Alaska to receive Supplement Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits from Alaska.

Age and Relationship. There are no specific age limits to receive SNAP benefits. Parents and their children 21 years old or younger living together are considered one household. Minors who apply on their own must be living independently. Individuals living together and who purchase and prepare food together are treated as one household.

Citizenship and Social Security Numbers. An applicant must be a U.S. citizen, a U.S. National, or a qualified alien to get SNAP benefits. Some legal immigrants are ineligible for SNAP benefits; however, dependents of an ineligible immigrant are often eligible. All household members must have a social security number or proof of having applied for one.

Work. To receive SNAP benefits, most able-bodied people between 16 and 59 years old must register for work, participate in the Employment & Training Program (E&T) if offered, accept offers of employment, and cannot quit a job. In addition, unless exempt, SNAP benefits are limited to 3 months within a 36 month period for Able Bodied Adults without Dependents (ABAWD’s) between the ages of 18 and 50 who are not working or participating in an approved E&T program an average of 20 hours per week.

Other Factors. Strikers must be resource and income eligible before the day of the strike. Most college students must be working half time, enrolled in work-study, caring for young dependents, or receiving Temporary Assistance. Felons convicted of drug-related offenses are not eligible for SNAP benefits unless they meet specific conditions. Individuals disqualified for fraud are ineligible for one year for the first offense, two years for the second offense, and permanently for the third. Dependents of disqualified or ineligible individuals may be eligible.

Resource Test. The asset limit is $2,250 for most households and $3,500 for households containing a member who is disabled or 60 years or older.

Many types of assets are not counted such as the home you occupy and its lot, household goods, burial plots, cash value of life insurance, money in retirement savings accounts, pension plans, income producing property, 529 college savings plans, and vehicles used for an exempt reason or with an equity value under $1,500.

Countable assets include cash on hand, money in checking or savings accounts, certificates of deposit, U.S. savings bonds, stocks, bonds, property not up for sale, crowdfunding accounts, and lump-sum payments. Special rules apply to Alaska Permanent Fund Dividends.

Income Test. SNAP does not count loans, Title IV Education Act and Bureau of Indian Affairs Grants and Awards, reimbursements, Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) Corporation payments to shareholders, heating or energy assistance, and earnings of children under age 18 who are in school.

Countable income includes wages, self-employment, public assistance benefits, unemployment benefits, worker's compensation, child support, Social Security benefits (SSA), Supplemental Security Income (SSI), pensions, and Senior Benefits payments. Special rules apply to Alaska Permanent Fund Dividends.

Deductions. SNAP rules allow income deductions, including a 20% deduction of gross earned income, a standard deduction of $286 given to households with one to five members and $304 given to households with six or more members, a deduction for dependent care costs if they are for a child who is a member of the SNAP household and are necessary to allow a household member to work or attend school, medical expenses over $35 for elderly or disabled household members, and a shelter/utility deduction not to exceed $936 for most households. There is no limit on shelter/utility deductions for households that contain an elderly or disabled individual.

Alaska SNAP Program Standards
Income Limits And Standard Deductions

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed)

For SNAP-eligible residents, SNAP-Education services are available in several communities throughout the state. To learn more about this program, visit the SNAP-Ed webpage.

USDA Non-Discrimination Statement

In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity (including gender expression), sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, family/parental status, income derived from a public assistance program, political beliefs, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity, in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA (not all bases apply to all programs). Remedies and complaint filing deadlines vary by program or incident.

Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.) should contact the responsible Agency or USDA's TARGET Center at 202-720-2600 (voice and TTY) or contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at 800-877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.

To file a program discrimination complaint, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, AD-3027, found online at How to File a Program Discrimination Complaint and at any USDA office or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call 866-632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by: (1) mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; (2) fax: 202-690-7442; or (3) email: USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer, and lender.