Bill would limit food stamps

Feb 21, 2017

BY: CCNH-LFDA Highlights

The New Hampshire Senate is considering a bill to limit access to food stamps.

The bill, SB 7, received an 'ought to pass' recommendation from a Senate committee. 

The bill makes three specific changes to food stamp eligibility.  First, the bill prohibits the state from seeking a waiver from any federal rules, such as work requirements.  Second, the bill requires the state to use federal limits for income and other resources.  Those federal limits are lower than what the state currently allows.  Lastly, the bill requires individuals to cooperate with the Division of Child Support Services to receive food stamps.

The Union Leader reports that right now New Hampshire residents may qualify for food stamps if their family income is up to 185% of the federal poverty level.  SB 7 would drop that to 130% of the federal poverty level – a little over $2,000 a month for a family of three. 

Bill supporters argue that food stamps should only be for those people who are in financial crisis.  They believe limiting benefits will motivate participants to find good jobs and will save taxpayer money.

Bill opponents argue that many food stamp recipients are already working and are still unable to support their families.  New Hampshire Legal Assistance estimates 17,000 working families could lose food stamps under SB 7.  If those families go hungry, negative effects include health problems, decreased productivity, strain on local food pantries, and more.

For information on how to apply for food stamps, click here.

Do you think NH should reduce eligibility for food stamps? Join the discussion by commenting below.

UPDATE: Read our Citizen Voices℠ report and find out where New Hampshire stands on this issue.


Seth King
- Sugar Hill

Tue, 03/14/2017 - 1:13pm

I'd like to see all taxpayer coerced welfare abolished completely. I'm tired of paying for other people's groceries. How many of these food stamp recipients pay hundreds of dollars per month for cable or cell phones for every member of the household? How many of them use their income to pay for their vices such as alcohol, tobacco, and weed, and then use food stamps to feed their family? It's a lot, and their sob stories grew tiresome two decades ago, even before the financial crisis.

Abuse is rampant with food stamps. If you can't figure out how to make ends meet and live within your means, *and* absolutely *no* voluntary charity is willing to help you, then you starve to death.

Ann Towle
- Northfield

Sun, 03/12/2017 - 4:21pm

I'm a NH resident. Hunger is a real issue in America, working families depend on food stamps to feed their families due to low wages and limited work hours. There are numerous issues that need to change before wages rise and fulltime work becomes readily available again. Don't make it harder to qualify for food stamps.

Id S
- Concord

Thu, 03/09/2017 - 12:36pm

No--we should not make it harder for people in NH to get food!


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Welfare Restrictions | 1 comment(s)
Should NH add restrictions on welfare recipients?


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