Walmarts in Fort Bend Co. not affected by EBT system failure
By Elsa Maxey
Reports from across the nation state that about 17 states were affected by connectivity failures for foodstamp or Electronic Debit Transfer (EBT) cards at Walmarts this past Saturday.Texas was not one of them, which means Fort Bend Walmarts were not affected, confirmed Assistant Manager Nyaisha Davis of the Sugar Land location on SH 6.
Across the U.S. in some cases, accounts indicate there were disturbances and customers took unpaid groceries and walked out of stores as it was determined they were unable to use their food stamp cards. Others reportedly put the items back. In another place, there was a mini riot and the store was temporarily closed.
And yet in other places, the EBT system, which allows recipients of government food stamps to purchase goods using the digital card with a set spending limit, that spending limit disappeared for several hours.
Reports state that many card users in a Louisiana store reportedly “bought” as much as they could carry. Cell phone video showed dozens of shopping carts piled high with merchandise. They were abandoned in the store’s aisles after an update, a store announcement that the cards were showing accurate spending limits.
The company providing the infrastructure of the EBT card system reportedly experienced a power outage during a routine maintenance test causing the temporary issue. The glitch was not attributed to the government shutdown. But the fact that U.S. census online information cannot be accessed is due to the lapse in government funding –census.gov sites, services, and all online survey collection requests will be unavailable until further notice. That source of information was intended to call attention to those in this economically strong and vibrant area falling under poverty income classifications.
Davis, however, said the EBT cards are regularly used at the Sugar Land location. Reportedly, the emergency plan that can be put in place in case of an electronic failure is a $50 limit on the cards. Here’s hoping that would have been the case in Fort Bend.
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