Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program

Local News
10:00 am
Sun November 3, 2013

Louisville Dare to Care Prepares for Greater Demand with Food Stamp Benefits Drop

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Louisville's Dare to Care program expects increased demand now that reductions to the food stamps program have gone into effect.

Increases to the food stamps program, formally called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, approved during the economic recovery expired Friday. That means about 870,000 Kentuckians will see their monthly benefits drop by $20 to $36.

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Politics
7:33 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

Congressman John Yarmuth Lone Kentucky Lawmaker to Vote Against $40 Billion in Food Stamp Cuts

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In a close vote, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a Republican-backed plan to cut food stamps by $40 billion over the next decade, which supporters say will bring sustainability to the program while saving the taxpayer's money.

Lawmakers approved the proposal by a 217-210 vote on Thursday with 15 GOP members joining the entire Democratic caucus who voted against the bill.

The cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) are nearly double as much as an earlier measure rejected by the House in June.

But supporters of the assistance program argue this could have a disproportionate impact on poorer states like Kentucky, where one out of six households report facing serious problems affording nutritious food.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, food stamps benefits go to around 820,000 Kentuckians per month. In the final tally, all but one of Kentucky's six representatives voted for the cuts.

"Today’s House vote to strip nearly $40 billion from federal food assistance programs directly threatens the health and financial security of the more than 44,000 Louisville families who depend on these programs to put food on their tables," says Democratic Congressman John Yarmuth, who voted against the bill. "These cuts would also needlessly weaken our economy, as every $5 spent on food assistance generates $9 in local economic activity."

But GOP lawmakers who favored the proposal drafted by Majority Leader Eric Cantor of Virginia, highlight the rise of food stamp recipients in the past five years as a need to bring solvency to the program. The argue it simply restores eligibility limits to their original levels, and maintains funding for food assistance in other areas.

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Politics
5:01 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Report: One in Six Kentucky Households Cannot Afford Healthy Food

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One in six Kentucky households report having serious problems affording nutritious food, according to new data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The report released on Wednesday also reveals basic hunger needs in the state have increased over the past decade even as lawmakers in Washington are proposing to dump millions of food stamp recipients.

Of the approximately 285,000 Kentucky households experiencing food insecurity, about 113,000 had at least one or more members living in the home forced to reduce their food intake. The agriculture department's report shows 15.6 percent lack adequate food choices, a five percent increase since 2003.

Many argue government help such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program combat those hunger issues. But food stamps face a possible $40 billion worth of cuts in Congress, which could eliminate benefits for up to 6 million Americans.

Jason Bailey is director of the Kentucky Center for Economic Policy. He says the cuts are coming at a time when many families are still struggling economically.

"It’s not like they’re also proposing to create 4 to 6 million jobs that these folks can get to provide enough income for them to pay for their food needs. It’s an incredibly cruel and counter-productive proposal at a time when unemployment is still high," he says.

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Politics
4:44 pm
Thu June 14, 2012

Paul Rails Against Food Stamps

The Senate shot down an amendment proposed by U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., to drastically cut the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program on Wednesday despite an impassioned speech about fraud and misuse in the system.

Speaking on the Senate floor, Paul defended his amendment by arguing the federal government is giving assistance millionaires and brought up a case of a Chicago woman who lied about having triplets to receive more food stamps.

Check it out (h/t PageOne Kentucky):

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