A bipartisan proposal to cut food stamps by $9 billion would likely pass the lower chamber with support from Democrats, Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said this week.
“If that is the figure, and if other matters that are still at issue can be resolved, I think the bill will probably pass, and it will pass with Democratic — some Democratic — support,” Hoyer said Thursday during the taping of C-SPAN’s “Newsmakers” program, which will air Sunday. “Not, certainly, universal Democratic support. … But I think it will pass.”
Bipartisan negotiators from both chambers are said to be nearing a deal on a farm bill that would include roughly $9 billion in cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), commonly known as food stamps.
Indeed, SNAP is a good program. Yes, people have been known to sell the benefits, and in some states the level of benefits you get is not well regulated (you get more than you need) but the program itself is good. I am surprised at the 9 BILLION number. In poorer states some people really don’t get enough. If that gets cut, especially people with no children are going to see their benefits reduced even more.
I see lots of big numbers thrown around (on this topic and others), and people complaining about the cuts are too much. I want to make sure those who need food, get food. At the same time, we should expect the government to be much better stewards of taxpayer money.
There are several questions we should ask: are these actual cuts (meaning we spend less this year than we spent last year)? Or, are these fake cuts (meaning we still spend more next year, but not as much as was previously budgeted. Its a reduction of the increase in spending)? Also note that all “cuts” are over a 10 year time frame, so a “cut” of 9 billion, would actually be a “cut” of 900 million in a year.
At the same time we ensure the hungry get fed, we must also make sure we clamp down on fraud, and have a definition of “hungry” / “needy” that is current and sensible. Currently, and correct me if I’m wrong, but a person who has a million dollars in the bank, but currently has $0 of income, is eligible for food stamps.
The point is this: feed the (truly) hungry in a cost effective, good steward way.
The last “cut” proposal I saw wasn’t even a cut in the increase. It was a totally theoretical saving wrought by requiring able-bodied recipients without dependents to work at least 20 hours/week, including on public service, be available for work, or be in job training.
I’m not sure if this is the one they’re talking about, but I am pretty confident there’s no real cut because there never is.
That would be better, if the “cuts” are over 10 years, then I am not as concerned as I was at first.
Like shockerfan said, a good question, is if this is a real cut or just a decrease in the increases.
But ringil is correct, all assets are considered when applying for benefits. You car(s), your house, any property, any retirement funds, social security, disability, or even unemployment, any and all bank accounts. Trust funds and inheritances. You must report all of these things, including an immediate change in income. (So if you weren’t working you might be getting $300 a month, and if you get a minimum wage job working approximately 30 hours a week (can’t work more than 32 or the company has to give you benefits), then your benefits are going to go down the next month to less that $200. (Assets are counted for SNAP but not always for medicaid, I am not sure what is counted for straight up cash assistance).
I guess I went a little off-topic but how does buying bonds and lowering rates of return help the savers? Do you know how much you have to work at $15/hr to be able to save and retire comfortably at 66 or 67?
Incidentally they haven’t cut back on the borrowing that much, though the markets did seem somewhat surprisingly convinced of it.
First, any food people get through SNAP is given to them, so reductions are not “taking” from them, just not given.
Additionally, the funds are being reduced over **ten years, **not for one year.
This is how they plan to make the reduction: “The savings come by making it tougher to receive enhanced food stamp payments through the federal home-heating assistance program. Under current law, some beneficiaries can receive additional SNAP benefits, if they receive as little as $1 per year through the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, or LIHEAP.”
What this means is that people who are less poor will be given less.
No proposal for “cuts” to food stamps I have seen proposed in the last five years are actually “cuts”. The closest was in the Ryan plan when the “cut” was to be reducing the rate of increase from 12% to 8%, both well above the inflation rate.
In the latest proposal I have seen, there are no “cuts” at all, they’re totally illusory.