Members of Congress have only eight legislative days in September to work out a compromise on a Farm Bill before they go out for the elections and cuts to SNAP are among the top issues lawmakers need to resolve to get a Farm Bill passed. The Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) and allies are working over the August congressional recess to get House cosponsors for a Sense of the House Resolution (H. Res. 760) opposing the $16 billion in SNAP cuts contained in the House Agriculture Committee Farm Bill (H.R. 6083).
Ten-year SNAP cuts total $4.49 billion in the Senate-passed bill (S. 3240) and $16 billion in the House Agriculture Committee-passed bill (H.R. 6083). The $16 billion in ten-year cuts in H.R. 6083 include 1) limiting states’ coordination of SNAP with Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) payments (“heat and eat” policy)(the $4.49 billion cut in S. 3240); 2) an $11 billion cut restricting the Categorical Eligibility (Cat El) option states have to change asset and gross income tests and streamline operations; and 3) a $480 million cut eliminating state bonuses for effective SNAP operation. Based on prior Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projections, eliminating “heat and eat” would cut SNAP food benefits for 500,000 households by $90 each month; the Cat El change would cut 1.8 million individuals per year off SNAP and undermine access to free school meals for 280,000 low-income children.
In Washington State the impact of the House Budget Resolution means 80,300 would lose access to SNAP in 2013 and 975,000 would experience a decrease in benefits by 2016.
What You Need to Do:
- Ask your Representative to co-sponsor House Resolution 760 opposing the $16 billion in SNAP cuts contained in the House Ag Committee’s Farm Bill.
- Gather messages on ‘empty refrigerator’ cards from clients that tell their Congress member why food stamps are so important and why cuts would be so devastating.
- Coordinate with AHNC to deliver these cards to your member’s office in a way that will be coordinated, visible and memorable: our goal is to have a steady stream of quick visits delivering the same kind of messages throughout their time at home, every one of them saying “Vote No on a Farm Bill that Cuts SNAP.”
Contact Claire Lane (ClaireL@withinreachwa.org or 206-830-7642) to for more details on the summer SNAP campaign.