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The Trump Administration plans to implement a rule change to close loopholes that states have been using to exempt large portions of healthy, younger food stamp recipients from work requirements.

The new rule changes the application process for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, also known as food stamps, from every two years to every year, and narrows the unemployment benchmark for applicants.

Administered by the Federal Nutrition Service, a division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, for more than 20 years, states have been allowed to submit requests to the USDA to waive the federal work requirement for able-bodied adults without dependents in order to receive taxpayer-funded food stamps through geographic area waivers.

Federal law allows states to waive work requirements for areas with high unemployment rates (10 percent and above), and higher than the national rate (currently 3.7 percent). For decades, states have abused this flexibility in order to waive work requirements for as many ABWDs as possible, the Foundation for Government Accountability says.

“Despite record low unemployment rates nationwide, more than a third of the nation lives in an area where work requirements have been waived,” FGA said.

“The new rule reins in state abuse of waivers and other loopholes that have allowed states to avoid requiring childless, able-bodied adults to work, train, or volunteer at least part-time to receive food stamps,” FGA said in a statement.

The proposed changes could save taxpayers $15 billion every year over the next 10 years, USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue said in a statement.

“A central theme of the Trump administration has been to expand prosperity for all Americans, which includes helping people lift themselves out of pervasive poverty,” Purdue said. “The proposed rule, he added, “restores the dignity of work to a sizable segment of our population, which it’s also respectful of the taxpayers who fund the program.”

The FGA applauds the new rule but says that more can be done.

More loopholes still need to be closed “to prevent states from further abusing the process,” said Kristina Rasmussen, vice president of federal affairs at FGA. “The Department should be commended for asking questions and requesting comments on several areas that can be tightened further to promote work, including grouping of jurisdictions. There is now an opportunity for the administration to promote work for able-bodied adults even further.”

An analysis by Cheetsheet.com compared the USDA’s most recent state-by-state data with U.S. Census Bureau population data.

The 15 states with the highest percentage of residents on food stamps range from 14 to 20 percent of the population, costing taxpayers a total of more than $1.6 billion annually.

The top three states with the highest dollar amounts are Florida, Illinois and Georgia. The top three states with the largest percentage of the population receiving food stamps are New Mexico, Louisiana and West Virginia.

New Mexico has a greater share of people on food stamps than any other state — one in five, or 20.25 percent. The bill to feed them costs taxpayers roughly $58.58 million.

Louisianans are the second-most dependent on food stamps with the government spending about $112.61 million on more than 891,000 people, or 19.05 percent of the population.

In West Virginia, 18.27 percent of the population receive food stamps, 37 percent from working families, costing taxpayers $39.48 million.

In Washington, D.C., 18.06 percent are on food stamps costing the government $16.4 million. The CPBB reports that 26 percent receiving aid are from working families.

One News Now reports that there are more food stamp recipients than public school students in Oregon. About 17.73 percent receive them, costing the government $79 million.

In Mississippi, 17.68 percent of residents are on food stamps, carrying a cost of $61.32 million.

In Alabama, 16.31 percent of the population is on food stamps, costing taxpayers $95.45 million.

In Tennessee, 15.58 percent of the population receives food stamps, costing $129.73 million.

In Delaware, 15.42 percent of the population receives food stamps, costing the government $17.56 million.

According to US News, more grandparents are raising grandchildren in Oklahoma, which may or may not contribute to the 15.3 percent of the population receiving food stamps. The cost to taxpayers averages $73.11 million annually.

Even though Florida only has 15.2 percent of its population receiving food stamps, because of the sheer size of its population, 15 percent equates to 3.1 million people. More people receive food stamps in Florida than any other state, costing the government nearly $381 million annually.

More than 440,000 Nevadans receive food stamps, or about 15.06 percent of the population, costing taxpayers $52.71 million.

About one in six people in Kentucky, or 651,028, receive food stamp, costing the government $77.68 million.

In Illinois, nearly two million out of 13 million residents receive food stamps, or about 14.6 percent of the population, costing taxpayers $224.28 million.

Not having to work while also receiving food stamps, Secretary Perdue said, “is unacceptable to most Americans and belies common sense, particularly when employment opportunities are as plentiful as they currently are.”

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12 Comments

12 Comments

  1. James Kelly

    January 11, 2019 at 1:41 am

    liberal = gimme free stuff

  2. Bj

    January 11, 2019 at 1:58 am

    Long past due. So much abuse it’s unbelievable. The abusers are taking food from the mouths of the people who really need it

  3. Bennie Sowers

    January 11, 2019 at 2:29 am

    BJ you are sure right its past time for the leaders the citizens of this country to take charge of this country and to stop worrying about people all over the world charity begins at home.

  4. Crystal Fenton

    January 11, 2019 at 2:32 am

    Finally!!!

  5. Rick

    January 11, 2019 at 2:50 am

    18 year olds graduating high school jumping on welfare….GET OUT AND WORK..

  6. J POLLS

    January 11, 2019 at 3:33 am

    If you want to see what this nation is producing, just watch the “JERRY SPRINGER” SHOW…A GAZILLION “BABY DADDY’S” AND “BABY MAMA’S”ONE WAS 28 WITH 8 KIDS…………….

  7. Jake

    January 11, 2019 at 3:51 am

    My attitude is… “If you can’t feed ’em, don’t breed ’em!”

    Why don’t we make this a national conservative motto? I mean, I chose not to have kids but I don’t want to see them go hungry. But on the other hand, why in the hell should I have to continue my years and years of financial support to these women that have multiple children from different sperm donors who don’t stick around. Many of the donors (they are NOT fathers!) end up in prison, then the women not only get food stamps but other welfare handouts such as cash, subsidized housing, subsidized/free cell phones, free/cheap health benefits, and on and on and on. How stupid are we as a nation? They aren’t my kids, I wasn’t there to donate and I, for one, am damned tired of paying for other people’s little bastards. Irresponsible, lazy-assed, loose, immoral, women who spread their legs for more welfare. And the men? Put them on a chain gang! Make them work to support their kids! They can start by cleaning graffiti off our walls and freeway overpasses. They can pick up trash on the roadways. I don’t give a shit. Make them PAY!

    If you can’t feed ’em, don’t breed ’em! If they knew they wouldn’t get paid for the illegitimate children, I have a feeling they wouldn’t be so eager to have them.

    • Jeanette

      January 11, 2019 at 4:35 pm

      When they reapply for welfare, and their child reaches a age determined by the government, the welfare worker tells them they will be cut off and need to find work, or get pregnant again and you can keep your benefits comming. So they keep having them. They teach their kids the same thing, now we have generation, after generation of users, abusers and takers, who have no plans to change.

  8. Pnut67

    January 11, 2019 at 4:26 am

    Its about time. Finally got a press who has the COCONUTS to stand up to SNAP abuse. What he needs to do is get a bill that makes Applying/REapplying for it even more strenuous process. Yes, our nation’s unemployment rates would STAY down then, cause these ‘baby daddies, baby mommies’ would HAVE to get out & either find a job, or create their own work.
    PRESIDENT TRUMP: Making America GRWAT since November 2016
    LETS CONTINUE HELPINH HIM, CONSERVATIVES!!!!

  9. Michael_T

    January 11, 2019 at 5:15 am

    Don’t forget to spay or neuter your liberals.

  10. FAST EDDIE

    January 11, 2019 at 1:59 pm

    Sorry FS abusers.

  11. Lee

    January 12, 2019 at 1:34 am

    First thing needs to be done if fire those working in SNAP office and replace them with honest people I know for a fact they tell ppl how to cheat the system. The exact opposite of what they should be doing. When they tell someone who has zero income to claim that she supports her mother then increases her food stamps from 200.00 to 480.00 per month. Those ppl need to be fired

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