Parks open but not park playgrounds

Are Calcasieu Parish parks exempt from COVID-19 restrictions?

The parks themselves are open, but not the actual playgrounds.

Both Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Stitch Guillory and Calcasieu Parish Administrator Bryan Beam said this week that parish and local parks remain open for residents to spend time outdoors, as long as they are not in large groups.

Area boat launches remain open, too.

“People are encouraged to go outside and to stay active during this time, as long as they practice social distancing when they are around their neighbors,” Gov. John Bel Edwards has said.

Food stamps

How can I apply for food stamps if I don’t have a computer?

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program provides monthly benefits that help eligible low-income households buy food. For most households, SNAP funds account for only a portion of their food budgets.

Eligible households can receive food assistance through regular SNAP or through the Louisiana Combined Application Project (LaCAP).

For more information on SNAP and other services available through the Department of Children and Family Services, call 1-888-524-3578.

SNAP participants may also meet the income eligibility guidelines for nutrition services through the Women, Infants & Children Program offered by the Louisiana Department of Health.

WIC is a special supplemental nutrition program for pregnant, breastfeeding and postpartum women, infants and children under 5. The program provides infant formula, infant fruits/vegetables and infant cereal, adult cereals low in sugar and high in iron, milk, cheese, juice, eggs, peanut butter or dried beans/peas, whole grains, canned fish and fresh fruits and vegetables. For more on the WIC program, call 504-568-8229.

Stimulus checks

When will President Trump’s stimulus checks be mailed?

Automatic payments are set to begin this week. Eligible taxpayers who filed tax returns for either 2019 or 2018 and chose direct deposit for their refund will automatically receive a stimulus payment of up to $1,200 for individuals or $2,400 for married couples and $500 for each qualifying child, the IRS said Friday.

Individuals who receive Social Security retirement or disability benefits, or who receive Railroad Retirement benefits but didn’t file a return for 2019 or 2018 will automatically receive a payment in the “near future,” the agency said. Direct deposit fund will be sent first, then paper checks will be mailed.

The Informer is written by Crystal Stevenson, American Press executive editor. To ask a question, call 494-4098 and leave voice mail, or email area parks remain open for walking, playground areas are closed and public gatherings are prohibited. Above, the playground at Prien Lake Park.

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