SNAP

How a Proposed SNAP Eligibility Revision Could Affect Ohio Valley Recipients

Jul 25, 2019

The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced this week a proposal to tighten the rules on who qualifies for food stamps through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). USDA estimates more than three million people across the country would lose SNAP benefits in an effort to prevent fraud. Anti-hunger advocates in the Ohio Valley say the more than two million people in the region who use the benefits would be impacted.

The Trump administration wants to change the way states determine who qualifies for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, benefits, also known as food stamps. The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that 3 million people would lose their food assistance as a result.

May 29, 1961: Elderson Muncie Receives First Food Stamps in Nation

May 29, 2019
e-WV

On May 29, 1961, Elderson Muncie of Bradshaw in McDowell County received the first food stamps in the nation. Muncie, an unemployed miner and father of 15, took his stamps to John Henderson’s supermarket in Welch and bought two watermelons.

The new federal program was intended to provide supplemental income for welfare recipients and families below certain income levels. Because of high unemployment and poverty rates, West Virginia has been a focus of the program since its inception.

Kentucky Called A 'Warning Signal' On SNAP Work Requirements

Apr 3, 2019
USDA

The federal government is considering a work requirement for some people who get food assistance through SNAP, or the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. A new study uses Kentucky as an example of what that change could mean for the country.

The SNAP rules require 80 hours of work a month and cap assistance at three months over three years. This applies to able-bodied adults without children. The rules have been around for a while but hadn’t been enforced until recently.

Elliot P. / Wikipedia Commons

West Virginia receives the fourth most federal funding of any state in the country, according to a new analysis.

We bring you another Friday Reporter Roundtable. Host Suzanne Higgins is joined by statehouse reporters to recap the week and look ahead to the next. We explore the massive education reform bill, the debate over legalizing cannabis in West Virginia, child welfare needs, and the latest on legislation related to an Intermediate Court of Appeals.

West Virginia GOP Largely Accurate About Food Stamp Decline

Aug 28, 2018
In this Monday, March 27, 2017 photo Sunny Larson, left, and Zak McCutcheon pick produce while gathering provisions to take home at the Augusta Food Bank in Augusta, Maine.
AP Photo / Robert F. Bukaty

In a recent tweet, the West Virginia Republican Party praised President Donald Trump for his role in reducing the number of Americans who rely on food stamps.

"Thanks to President Trump and Republican leadership, the number of people collecting food stamps has declined by more than two million. Our economy is (in) recovery and more jobs are available! #WVGOP," the party tweeted Aug. 1.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, there’s a Farm Bill being passed around Capitol Hill. It has big implications for environmental stewardship. We’ll hear more about that bill as well as a report from Huntington on its LGBT-inclusion initiative.

SNAP Cuts Would Hurt Rural Disproportionally, Advocacy Group Says

May 3, 2018
USDA

The House Agriculture Committee’s version of the farm bill would strip billions in nutrition benefits from American families, according to an anti-hunger group. Rural residents are more likely than metropolitan ones to be participating in the program.

Unemployment Line
Matt Rourke / Associated Press

Officials say homelessness alone isn't automatically an exemption from work or training requirements for food stamp benefits recipients.

State Department of Health and Human Resources spokeswoman Allison Adler tells The Charleston Gazette-Mail that regulations for the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program don't allow for blanket exemptions based on homelessness.

Kara Lofton / WV Public Broadcasting

Residents affected by the June 23 may qualify for special Disaster SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) benefits. Disaster SNAP benefits can be used by families to purchase food lost in the floods.

Supermarket Shelf
Philrj / wikimedia commons

SNAP clients who lost food in the last week’s flood are getting help.

Anyone in flood affected areas who lost food that was purchased with food stamps can get replacement benefits. The request for replacement food stamps must be made by Tuesday July 22nd.

Officials say more than 1,000 West Virginians will lose their food stamp benefits starting next month.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports the state Department of Health and Human Resources announced last year that it would reinstate a requirement calling on Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program recipients to meet a monthly work or training requirement of 20 hours per week or lose benefits.

Mountaineer Food Bank

Advocates say West Virginia's plan to make food stamp recipients meet a work or training requirement could increase the burden of food banks.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports that the state Department of Health and Human Resources announced last year that it would reinstate a requirement calling on Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program recipients to meet a monthly work or training requirement of 20 hours per week or lose benefits. The changes took effect in January.

Jill Upson / Twitter

A West Virginia report says $55 million in two welfare programs was spent out of state in a year.

The House released the Department of Health and Human Resources report Wednesday at Republican Del. Jill Upson's request.

The report says that of $457.2 million in benefits, $52.5 million was spent out of state on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or food stamps, from November 2014 through October 2015.

Neighboring Kentucky, Maryland, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia comprised 90 percent.

About $1 million was spent in North Carolina and Florida each.