LANSING — Low-income Michigan residents can have more money in the bank without losing access to public assistance under new policies announced Thursday by Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.
Beginning Nov. 1, Michigan will allow residents with up to $15,000 in personal assets to remain eligible for cash, food and emergency relief assistance programs, including funding for winter home heating. The state will maintain strict income caps for welfare eligibility.
The administration of former Gov. Rick Snyder, a Republican, established some of the strictest asset limits in the country at $50 for State Emergency Relief, $3,000 for the Family Independence Program and $5,000 for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, previously known as food stamps.
“This was cruel and unusual punishment for people who were struggling to have to jump through more barriers in order to get a basic need addressed,” Gilda Jacobs, president and CEO of the Michigan League for Public Policy, told Bridge Magazine after the state announcement.