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Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Cutting SNAP affects economy

The President’s proposed budget calls for reducing SNAP by $192 billion over the next decade. This is despite the government's own research that shows food stamps don't just pay for themselves — they have a return on investment. A 2010 USDA study found that every $1 spent on SNAP generates $1.79 in GDP. Besides putting food on the table, the stimulus SNAP spending grows the retail, wholesale and transportation economies that get it there, according to the report. And every $1 billion increase in SNAP creates 9,000 full-time jobs.

More than 260,000 locations were authorized to accept SNAP credits last year. Superstores such as Wal-Mart and Target got 52% of redemptions, supermarkets got 30%, and convenience stores got about 6%, according to the USDA . After the 2013 rollback in benefits, Wal-Mart blamed a 0.4% quarterly sales decline on the reduction, though the sales figure was down for the company's entire fiscal year. Dollar General, which has said it gets about 5% of its sales from SNAP benefits, said its traffic slowed tremendously after cuts last year. The proposed budget suggests that retailers pay a fee for authorization to accept SNAP. Companies currently don't pay to participate. The proposal estimates the fees would raise about $2.4 billion over 10 years. Imposing a fee could result in smaller stores or chains deciding not to seek authorization.

Source: ABC News, 5/24/17, SNAP Cuts Hurt the Economy