House farm bill talks have hit a snag over the key issue of food stamp eligibility requirements. The top House Ag Democrat is balking at a GOP farm bill proposal to add new work requirements to be eligible for food stamps, requirements that Senate Ag members are unlikely to accept.
Collin Peterson issued a statement after sharing details with the panel’s other Democrats, that his members are “unanimous in their opposition” to what Peterson calls “the extreme, partisan policies” of the majority. Peterson added, in an ominous note, “this opposition will not change.” The statement followed earlier warnings from Peterson about changing SNAP.
But Republicans, led by Chairman Mike Conaway, see a shrinking budget for farm programs, and SNAP is by far the largest program in the farm bill.
Conaway had planned to roll out a farm bill draft this week and is still working to get a bill out this month. But Peterson told some farm media that the SNAP proposal is similar to what killed the current farm bill when it came to the House floor in 2013. More modest Senate SNAP cuts prevailed. Senate Ag Chair Pat Roberts plans to start work on his bill next month.
(From the National Association of Farm Broadcasters)