As House and Senate farm bill conferees try to resolve their differences over SNAP, the Berkeley Food Institute published a policy brief that shows how some proposed changes to the program would undermine the very things that make SNAP successful.
More than 200 health and medical professionals from across the country sent a letter to the chairmen and ranking members of the House and Senate agriculture committees urging the farm bill conferees to reject the House bill’s expansion of SNAP work requirements.
Rep. Jim McGovern of Massachusetts, a longtime champion of nutrition programs and a farm bill conferee, urged his colleagues not to support the House bill’s language around nutrition programs. “It is vital that we stand strong and that we side with the Senate … with regard to their language in the nutrition title,” he said in an interview on Thursday with the Food Research and Action Center.
When farm bill negotiators get down to business, the 47 House "conferees" will face an unusually big-caliber Senate team, with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell as one of its members, a rare role for the leader. Senate Agriculture Committee leaders, in cheering the formal appointment of their nine negotiators, used "bipartisan" to describe their approach and take a swipe at the Republican-written House farm bill and its proposal to require more people to work 20 hours a week to qualify for food stamps.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's plan to ensure farmers markets can continue accepting SNAP benefits through the end of the market season relies on funding from a controversial federal program that rewards states for implementing SNAP with low error rates—and that lawmakers may eliminate in the next farm bill. (No paywall)
Food stamp recipients in New York State will be able to use EBT cards, without interruption, at farmers markets throughout New York for the rest of the market season, announced Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
The Republican chairmen and senior Democrats on the Senate and House Agriculture committees, known collectively the “Big Four,” met on Thursday and agreed “to get a farm bill finished as quickly as possible.”
A public opinion survey commissioned by the Johns Hopkins school of public health found that six in 10 voters oppose cuts in food stamps, the largest U.S. anti-hunger program. SNAP is the major issue in Senate and House negotiations over the 2018 farm bill.
With the support of the Trump administration, the Republican-controlled House wrote welfare reform into the farm bill. Now, GOP leaders say they will call a vote as early as Tuesday in the House for a face-to-face confrontation with the Senate over broader and more rigorous work requirements affecting an estimated 7 million food stamp recipients.
Senate Agriculture chairman Pat Roberts, who will chair House-Senate negotiations over the farm bill, plans a thorough but timely resolution of the differences between the two chambers’ versions, said a committee spokeswoman on Monday.