Tuesday, January 26, 2016
ARE SNAP BENEFITS REALLY TOO LOW?
The new report from the President’s Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) that maintains SNAP benefits are too low and should be increased is wrong argues a researcher at the American Enterprise Institute. The data, she contends, show that SNAP eliminates hunger for the overwhelming majority of American children and leaves most recipient households with adequate food. The CEA’s claim that SNAP cannot sustain families through the end of the month overstates the problem she says. While food purchases for SNAP households do decline over the course of the month, this could be due to “short-term impatience.” In other words, households that get all their SNAP benefits at the beginning of the month spend it right away. Distributing SNAP benefits throughout the month might solve this problem, she says. And, while some argue that SNAP payments are too low to buy the USDA adequate diet on which those benefits are based, AEI suggests adjusting benefit levels only in high-food-cost areas.
Source: American Enterprise Institute, 1/20/16, SNAP Benefits