TRENTON, NJ (KYW Newsradio) — New Jersey is increasing monthly cash payments to some of the state’s poorest residents.
This is the second consecutive year the Murphy Administration has increased the stipend paid under General Assistance and the smaller WorkFirst NJ programs, affecting some 37,000 people statewide.
“Last year there was a 10% increase in the number, and then this year, working with the legislature, the number went up 20%,” Human Services Commissioner Carole Johnson told KYW Newsradio.
Maximum individual payments for General Assistance are now at $185 dollars a month, up $31 dollars while a family of three in the WorkFirst program saw their benefit go from $466 to $559 dollars a month.
Johnson also notes that the number of people in that WorkFirst program has dropped by about 20% to just under 11,000.
“Across the nation we have seen some trending down in these programs as unemployment has gotten lower,” she added. “It’s created some opportunities for people to into the work force.”
But there are apprentice and training opportunities for others, just in case the economy takes a downward turn.