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Legislators want to increase SNAP payments

Dec 04, 2023 12:55 pm

Molly Burke reports in the Times Union that more than 50 representatives in the state legislature are asking Gov. Kathy Hochul to increase minimum benefits for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program from $23 to $100 per month. Some recent statistics show a hunger problem in New York. The number of New Yorkers who didn’t have enough to eat over a one-week period increased by 87 percent from July 2021 to this July according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s Household Pulse survey. New York's Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli released a report in March that said about 800,000 New Yorkers experienced food insecurity from 2019 to 2021. That is about 10 percent of the state’s residents. Assemblywoman Jessica González-Rojas says, “It’s time that we take it seriously and act on these issues during next year’s state budget cycle,.... These solutions, universal school meals, increasing the SNAP minimum benefit, and ending the subminimum wage for restaurant-tipped workers are in direct alignment with our governor’s call to make New York a safer, affordable, and livable state.” And it is not just Democrats asking Hochul to increase SNAP funding in her budget, as the letter asking for the increase was also signed by a Republican state senator and six Republican Assembly members. And an increase in what used to be called food stamps is also popular, with a recent Siena poll showing 76 percent of Democrats, 47 percent of Republicans, and 65 percent of independents and other voters supporting a proposed increase to the SNAP minimum benefit. Hochul will propose a new budget at the beginning of the new year. Read more about this story in the Times Union.

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