It's time for farm market vouchers

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The popular annual program that gives income-eligible seniors $20 to spend at the farmers markets will happen June 18 at senior centers in Allegheny County.

As usual, it's first-come, first-served, but a person who cannot be at a distribution location may fill out paperwork to have a proxy pick up his or her four $5 checks.

The Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP) is open to individuals who are 60 or older with household incomes at or below $21,257 for a one-person household and at or below $28,694 for a two-person household. Married couples may receive a total of two sets of checks.

The checks may be spent this summer on produce grown in Pennsylvania or purchased directly from a farmer in a neighboring state. Checks must be signed in the farmer's presence, and no change is given, so consumers are urged to spend the entire check -- preferably later in the season when local bounty is at its peak.

According to the Allegheny County Department of Human Services, the checks will be distributed at most senior centers on June 18. You just need to bring ID to prove your age and where you live.

Senior centers should have proxy forms, but you also can find a form and other details on the program at the Allegheny County website. Go to http://www.alleghenycounty.us/index.aspx,click on Departments, then click on Human Services, then click on Older Adults and information about the Farmers Market Nutrition Program will be there.

If you live elsewhere, check with your county for distribution date and other details.

SFMNP intern Suzanne Speck says Allegheny County received 24,500 checks to distribute this year, which is the same as last year.

If you have questions, you can contact her at Suzanne.Speck@alleghenycounty.us or 412-350-4219.

food

Bob Batz Jr.: bbatz@post-gazette.com and 412-263-1930 and on Twitter @bobbatzjr.


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