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Food Stamps

NEWS
June 27, 2013 | By Alfred Lubrano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Already under scrutiny for taking too long to process unemployment checks and home-energy assistance claims, Pennsylvania is also too slow in approving food-stamp applications, compelling the federal government to order the state to improve its performance. Pennsylvania ranks among the worst in the nation for getting food stamps to the needy within 30 days, as required by federal law, according to an Inquirer examination of data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which runs the food-stamp program.
NEWS
February 25, 1995 | FROM INQUIRER WIRE SERVICES
Under pressure from farm-state Republicans, House leaders yesterday abandoned a campaign promise to disband the food-stamp program that helps 27 million Americans buy groceries. The decision to preserve food stamps as a federal program comes a day after a House committee voted to repeal several other federal nutrition programs, including school lunches, and return the money to the states in block grants. Farm-state Republicans fought hard to keep food stamps, a $27 billion program that serves 11 million households, at the federal level.
NEWS
February 24, 1995 | By Tom Webb, INQUIRER WASHINGTON BUREAU
Key House Republicans are cracking the GOP's solid front and resisting plans to transfer the food-stamp program to the states, saying the federal government can run it most efficiently. The uprising within the Agriculture Committee is not sitting well with House Republican leaders, who so far have refused to back off from their Contract With America pledge to create block grants for federal food programs. At $26 billion a year, food stamps are the largest federal nutrition program, aiding 27 million low-income Americans, most of them children.
NEWS
August 7, 2013 | By Maddie Hanna, Inquirer Staff Writer
With food-stamp benefits soon to drop and the prospect of an additional $40 billion in cuts to the federal program looming, New Jersey antihunger organizations worry that the need will grow and they won't be able to meet it. Across the country, food-stamp recipients will see a decrease in benefits Nov. 1, with the expiration of an increase that went into effect in 2009 as part of the federal stimulus. In New Jersey, where 858,000 people - about one in 10 residents - receive food stamps, a family of three will likely see benefits decrease by $29 a month, according to New Jersey Policy Perspective, a liberal-leaning think-tank.
NEWS
June 3, 1994 | by Joseph R. Daughen, Daily News Staff Writer
Federal authorities are investigating what is said to be the widespread illegal sale of food stamps in Philadelphia by recipients to brokers for dozens of mom-and-pop groceries. Sources said agents from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which pays for the food stamp program, are looking at the operations of the stores because they ultimately redeem the stamps for cash from the government. The major supermarket chains do not figure in the probe, the sources said, adding that the investigation is focused on smaller stores serving poorer neighborhoods.
NEWS
May 18, 2004
SUPPORTING new supermarkets in Philadelphia's underserved neighborhoods is a worthy endeavor. The governor is making a wise investment in directing our tax dollars to these ventures, but their success will be dependent largely on sales. Start-up incentives won't keep black ink from turning to red. So how does a supermarket owner boost sales? Might an extra $200 in the pocket of every low-income shopper do the trick? And how might that happen when such shoppers work as nursing assistants, dishwashers and child-care providers?
NEWS
February 6, 2014 | By Alfred Lubrano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Food stamps nationwide will be cut by more than $8 billion over the next 10 years, with a significant portion of the decrease borne by Pennsylvania and New Jersey residents - many of whom are disabled, elderly, or children. A Senate vote of 68-32 on Tuesday afternoon sent the so-called Farm Bill to President Obama after three years of wrangling in both houses of Congress. Obama is expected to sign the legislation, which will have the effect of cutting $8.6 billion in food stamps from 850,000 U.S. households in the next decade.
NEWS
March 7, 2014 | By Alfred Lubrano, Inquirer Staff Writer
In a move that surprised even his most cynical critics, Gov. Corbett on Wednesday night forestalled an estimated $3 billion in cuts to food stamps in the state over the next 10 years. By doing so, Corbett became the first Republican governor in the country to prevent the cuts ordered by Congress, which is looking to slash $8.6 billion over the next decade to the food-stamp program, now called SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program). The governor's decision will preserve benefits for 400,000 Pennsylvania households slated to lose a monthly average of $60 to $65 each in benefits, amounting to $300 million a year, said Kait Gillis, spokeswoman for the state Department of Public Welfare.
NEWS
March 12, 2014 | By Alfred Lubrano, Inquirer Staff Writer
In October, the state's public-welfare secretary said she was "rethinking" the food-stamp asset test, a controversial measure tying federal benefits to people's bank accounts and car ownership. Almost five months later, not only is the asset test unchanged, but two state senators are also proposing a bill that would augment it. Pennsylvania is one of just 12 states to institute such a test, seen by advocates and academics as unnecessary red tape that stymies deserving people in accessing benefits.
NEWS
December 7, 1999
Hunger amid America's plenty seems especially sad in the holiday season. While most folks shop, party and feast from now till New Year's, an estimated 10 million Americans are hungry. Some of this suffering comes from excessive restrictions on food stamps. Some changes in the program are overdue: restoring eligibility for hundreds of thousands of legal immigrants and raising benefits in cities where rents are high. The Hunger Relief Act of 1999, sponsored by Sen. Edward Kennedy (D., Mass.
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