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Bacon: SNAP benefits need compromise to move forward with farm bill

A member of the House Ag Committee says lawmakers need to compromise on Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits before working on the farm bill.  

Don Bacon, a Republican from Nebraska, tells Brownfield an agreement is needed because it’s the largest portion of the bill. “All the other parts like crop insurance, trade incentives and those kind of things are part of the farm bill,” he says. “We want to get an agreement on where we’re going with the SNAP program because it will help grease the skids if you will for the rest of the farm bill to get passed.”

Earlier this week, members of an ag subcommittee heard discussion on the future of the cliff benefit effect where benefits are lost after meeting a certain income threshold.

Bacon, the ranking member on the Subcommittee on Nutrition, Oversight and Department Operations, said he would like to reduce benefits incrementally instead of expanding the program. “We want to do better. We want to help people get out of poverty.  What we heard during the hearing, you get to a spot where you earn one more dollar, people lose $700 worth of benefits.”

Bacon says people who enroll in SNAP help create new markets for ag producers. “The SNAP program allows many people who are under income to buy food, to buy vegetables, to buy beef.  It enables people to buy American products.”

Bacon says they’ll likely need to increase the budget for SNAP regardless of any compromise from lawmakers.

Don Bacon, Republican, NE-02:

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