Proposal to cut food benefits will increase hunger, especially in rural areas
A recently passed bill, House Bill 318, would end Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits for childless, able-bodied adults after 90 days unless they're working at least 20 hours a week or they're in job training. This bill believe it would increase hunger, especially in rural areas, where there are more people looking for jobs than jobs available.
SNAP is federally funded, so the state won't save any money by cutting benefits, which amount to about $32 a week per person.Still, Republican lawmakers predict the move will encourage the unemployed to take their job search more seriously.Tazra Mitchell, a policy analyst with the left-leaning North Carolina Budget & Tax Center, counters that more people are looking for work in 91 of the state's 100 counties than there are jobs available. Job training slots are also few and far between, she said.
"Just do the math. This is going to be especially harsh, and it’s unnecessary,” Mitchell said.
Vance County could be hurt the worst by the change, if it's enacted into law. The county has a 9.6 percent unemployment rate, and 6.34 percent of childless, able-bodied adults there receive SNAP benefits.
Cumberland County, where 3.84 percent of childless, employable adults receive food assistance, also would be hit hard.
Read more at http://www.wral.com/critics-say-proposal-to-cut-food-benefits-will-hit-rural-areas-hard/14943882/#jIDJ0WtXl2AU3B0V.99