Volunteers gather food at the New Hampshire Food Bank in Manchester, N.H. on Oct. 1, 2013. The temporary increase in food stamps expired Oct. 31, meaning for millions of Americans, the benefits that help them put food on the table every month wonít stretch as far as they have for the past four years.
(USA TODAY) -- Food stamp benefits will be cut to more than 47 million Americans
starting Friday as a temporary boost to the federal program comes to an
end without a new budget from a deadlocked Congress to replace it.
the program, known formally as the Supplemental Nutrition and
Assistance Program, or SNAP, a family of four who get $668 per month in
benefits will find that amount cut by $36.
will be hardest hit. In New York, more than 1 million elderly people or
those with disabilities will feel the impact, according to the Center on
Budget and Policy Priorities, a progressive think tank. About 2.3
million children in both California and Texas will be affected.
California overall, the cuts will affect more than 4 million residents
and will amount to the equivalent of losing roughly 21 individual meals
per month based on calculations used by the department of Agriculture,
The San Jose Mercury News reports.
Ohio, Lisa Hamler-Fugitt, head of Ohio Association of Foodbanks, says
the state's charities and food pantries that distributed $227 million in
food to needy residents in 2012 will not be able to make up a $190
million deficit in 2014, The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer reports.
will have to do what low-income people do, which is reduce the amount
of food we hand out and ration," she said. Hamler-Fugitt tells the
newspaper that she expects increased hunger in the state, affecting the
health of senior citizens and people with disabilities and forcing more
school children to go to classes without eating.
which benefits 1 in 7 Americans, is administered by the department of
Agriculture and is authorized in the omnibus farm bill covering all
NATIONWIDE: How food stamp cuts will affect your state
factors are driving the fiscal squeeze. The first is the winding up of
additional SNAP allocations under President Obama's 2009 stimulus bill.
The second -- and primary factor -- is the inability of Congress to
agree on an omnibus Farm Bill, which combines both funds for
agricultural programs and SNAP.
House Republicans want to cut $39
billion from SNAP over the next decade and tighten eligibility while
Senate Democrats favor only a $4 billion cut.
The bill usually
wins bipartisan support because it includes funds for agricultural
programs favored by farm and business interests and SNAP which is
supported by liberal and urban interests.
Last year the average monthly benefit per household for all 50 states and the District of Columbia was $278, according to Stateline, the daily news service of the Pew charitable Trusts.
will take away more food in our city than we, Food Bank For New York
City, the nation's largest food bank, distribute in an entire year,"
said Margarette Purvis, the Food Bank president and CEO, the Daily News of New York reports.