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WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY
- EFFECTIVE IN CHEMUNG COUNTY, NY UNTIL 12/9/2013 10:00 AM EST
- EFFECTIVE IN SCHUYLER COUNTY, NY UNTIL 12/9/2013 10:00 AM EST
- EFFECTIVE IN STEUBEN COUNTY, NY UNTIL 12/9/2013 10:00 AM EST
- EFFECTIVE IN TIOGA COUNTY, NY UNTIL 12/9/2013 10:00 AM EST
- EFFECTIVE IN TOMPKINS COUNTY, NY UNTIL 12/9/2013 10:00 AM EST
- EFFECTIVE IN YATES COUNTY, NY UNTIL 12/9/2013 10:00 AM EST
- EFFECTIVE IN BRADFORD COUNTY, PA UNTIL 12/9/2013 10:00 AM EST
- EFFECTIVE IN POTTER COUNTY, PA UNTIL 12/9/2013 10:00 AM EST
- EFFECTIVE IN TIOGA COUNTY, PA UNTIL 12/9/2013 10:00 AM EST
More Cuts to Food Stamps
Written By: Tanja Rekhi
ELMIRA (WENY) -- Come Friday, minor cuts will make a major difference to millions of families who rely on support from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or Food Stamps to provide themselves and their families with healthy and nutritious food.
Come Friday, $5 billion in automatic cuts to will kick in and 48 million food stamp recipients are going to see cuts to their benefits. Here in Chemung County, 6,500 families will be impacted.
People like Eric Hurlburt, who's trying hard to get back into full-time work, are going to have to make do with less.
"I've worked retail my whole life and working 32, 38 hours a week, paychecks aren't that great anyway," said Hurlburt. "When they're cutting our food stamps now, it just makes it that much harder for me and my family."
The 2009 American Reinvestment and Recovery Act law will expire Friday. It had raised the monthly SNAP benefits to help people get through the recession.
"And to some people, that might not seem like a lot, but if you're utilizing SNAP benefits and depending on them for your family, it can be a hardship for some people," said Donna Truax a Department Head at the Chemung County Department of Social Services.
Single people like Eric will lose $11 in SNAP Benefits a month. The cuts rise with family size, so a family of four will get $36 less each month.
"$11, you can even go to dollar tree and Aldi and that's one or two meals-- if you know how to stretch it. So, it's putting a lot of hardworking people in a bind," said Hurlburt.
As it stands today, the average SNAP recipient gets enough to spend about $2.20 per meal. The cuts will bring that per-meal average down below $1.40.
And as the holidays get closer, every penny matters.
"It's just less that we can do for each other around the holidays, especially for the kids," said Hurlburt.
Tomorrow members of congress will begin meeting to hammer out the Farm Bill, which the SNAP Program falls under.