U.S. to cut $1.3B in federal food stamp spending as sequester hits
— The federal government on Thursday said it would cut $9 billion in food stamp dollars in the current fiscal year to offset a $1 billion cut to the agency’s budget.
The agency said the move was made in the hopes of reducing hunger and keeping food on the table.
A budget memo released Wednesday by President Donald Trump said the federal government would reduce spending for food stamps by $1,500 per recipient, with some programs receiving more money.
But the administration is also proposing to reduce the amount of money it pays to private food companies by an average of about $200 a month, or nearly 50% of the average monthly food stamp subsidy.
The administration also wants to cut about $500 billion from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, which provides free or low-cost food for low-income families.
The budget memo does not detail how much of that would be spent on food stamps, or how much would be redirected to the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program.
Trump has proposed reducing the food stamp program’s budget by $4.5 billion over the next 10 years.
The proposal, however, would not address the growing cost of the sequester, which is set to begin Oct. 1.
The cuts to food stamps are the latest in a series of efforts by Trump to cut spending to combat the nation’s spiraling health care costs, as well as his administration’s reluctance to take on Wall Street bailouts.