New farm bill could affect New Mexicans who rely on food stamps | KOB 4

New farm bill could affect New Mexicans who rely on food stamps Web Staff
May 17, 2018 05:19 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Democrats want Republicans to scrap a vote on a farm bill set for Friday.


Thursday saw debate over the bill, with the main point of contention surrounding something that could affect hundreds of thousands of New Mexicans.

The five-year bill covers a variety of programs, some of which benefit New Mexican farmers. Among them: safety net programs such as subsidies for crop insurance, farm credit and land conservation, along with support for rural development.

However, there's one provision in particular that have Democrats crying foul. Republicans want to expand work requirements for those receiving food stamps through SNAP eligibility. The new requirements include 20 hours of work a week, or job training enrollment, for all able-bodied adults up to age 59 with no children under 6 years old.

Republicans argue their new work requirements are an effective way to get more people into the workforce.

"This is going to get more people out of poverty," Speaker Paul Ryan said. "This is going to get more people a steady job."

But Democrats say the requirements are misguided.

"Millions of Americans will be needlessly kicked off SNAP, and more children and families would go hungry," said Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham, representing New Mexico.

There are currently around 40 million people enrolled in SNAP, up from 17 million in 2000.

If the farm bill passes, the non-partisan congressional budget office predicts the new requirements would force 2 million people off the program.

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