TRENTON - New Jersey's Legislature has passed a bill to restore a federal food stamps waiver for which the Christie administration recently stopped applying.

The Assembly approved a measure Thursday that would require the Christie administration to conduct a study on whether a need for the waiver exists. If it does, then the state must apply for the waiver. 

The bill now goes to Gov. Chris Christie.

The Christie administration announced in December that it would stop seeking a waiver for "able-bodied" adults without dependents for the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, once called food stamps.

Since 2009, New Jersey was able to waive a requirement that food-stamp recipients work at least 20 hours a week because of the struggling economy.

But the administration said the state cannot continue because the economy has improved.

The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.