Bill Text: NJ ACR249 | 2018-2019 | Regular Session | Introduced


Bill Title: Condemns Trump Administration's proposed rule limiting categorical eligibility for SNAP.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 5-0)

Status: (Introduced - Dead) 2019-11-14 - Introduced, Referred to Assembly Human Services Committee [ACR249 Detail]

Download: New_Jersey-2018-ACR249-Introduced.html

ASSEMBLY CONCURRENT RESOLUTION No. 249

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

218th LEGISLATURE

 

INTRODUCED NOVEMBER 14, 2019

 


 

Sponsored by:

Assemblywoman  GABRIELA M. MOSQUERA

District 4 (Camden and Gloucester)

Assemblywoman  PATRICIA EGAN JONES

District 5 (Camden and Gloucester)

 

Co-Sponsored by:

Assemblywoman Pintor Marin

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Condemns Trump Administration's proposed rule limiting categorical eligibility for SNAP.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As introduced.

  


A Concurrent Resolution condemning the Trump Administration's proposed rule limiting categorical eligibility for the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

 

Whereas, The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, provides nutrition benefits to supplement the food budget of low-income families in order to purchase healthy food and move towards self-sufficiency; and

Whereas, This nationwide program is federally regulated by the United States Department of Agriculture pursuant to the "Food and Nutrition Act of 2008," Pub.L.110-246 (7 U.S.C. s.2011 et seq.); and

Whereas, The federal law authorizing SNAP establishes specific income and asset tests for determining benefit eligibility, and permits states to grant "categorical eligibility" for SNAP benefits to individuals who have already been certified for similar means-tested programs, such as the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program; and

Whereas, The Trump Administration has proposed limiting categorical eligibility for SNAP to individuals who qualify for TANF-funded cash benefits of at least $50 per month for a minimum of six months, and "substantial" non-cash TANF benefits, such as subsidized employment, work supports, or childcare; and

Whereas, The New Jersey Department of Human Services estimates that as many as 68,000 New Jersey residents, or nine percent of SNAP recipients, would lose SNAP benefits under the Trump Administration's proposal; and 

Whereas, Of the 68,000 SNAP recipients who would likely lose their benefits under the Administration's proposal, 26,000 are children under the age of 18 and 15,000 are senior citizens; and

Whereas, The loss of SNAP benefits could hold significant consequences for these New Jersey residents, as studies show that SNAP participants have better overall dietary quality and health status, and fewer hospitalizations, compared with low-income individuals who do not participate in SNAP; and

Whereas, The Trump Administration's proposed restrictions on SNAP eligibility translate to an annual benefits loss of $33 million for New Jersey's most vulnerable citizens; and

Whereas, The Administration's proposed rule would have a ripple effect throughout the State, potentially impacting other income-based programs, such as the School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs, and the Community Eligibility Program, under which certain school districts in impoverished areas can provide free lunch to all enrolled students; and

Whereas, This proposed rule may potentially reduce the allocation of federal Title I education funding for schools with a high percentage of students who qualify for free or reduced price lunch; and

Whereas, It is in the best interest of the citizens of this State, especially those low-income residents who rely on SNAP for a healthy diet, for the Legislature to condemn the Trump Administration's efforts to restrict categorical eligibility for SNAP benefits; now, therefore,

 

     Be It Resolved by the General Assembly of the State of New Jersey (the Senate concurring):

 

     1.    This Legislature condemns the Trump Administration's proposal to restrict categorical eligibility for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to households that qualify for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)-funded cash benefits of at least $50 per month for a minimum of six months, and such non-cash TANF benefits as subsidized employment, work supports, or childcare. 

 

     2.    Copies of this resolution, as filed with the Secretary of State, shall be transferred by the Clerk of the General Assembly or the Secretary of the Senate to the President of the United States, the Secretary of the United States Department of Agriculture, and to every member of New Jersey's Congressional delegation. 

 

 

STATEMENT

 

     This concurrent resolution condemns the Trump Administration's proposal to limit categorical eligibility for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, to households that qualify for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)-funded cash benefits of at least $50 per month for a minimum of six months.  Additionally, the proposal would restrict the types of non-cash TANF benefits that confer categorical eligibility to subsidized employment, work supports, or childcare.

     SNAP provides nutrition benefits to supplement the food budget of low-income families, individuals, senior citizens, and people with disabilities in order to purchase healthy food and move towards self-sufficiency.  While the federal government funds SNAP benefits, it shares the cost of program administration with the states, which operate the program.  The federal law authorizing SNAP establishes specific income and asset tests for determining benefit eligibility.  However, the law permits states to grant "categorical eligibility" for individuals who have already been certified for similar means-tested programs, such as TANF. 

     The Administration's proposed rule would deny critical food assistance to the State's most vulnerable residents.  The New Jersey Department of Human Services estimates that 68,000 residents would lose SNAP benefits under this proposal, including 26,000 children aged 18 and under and 15,000 senior citizens.  Many of the people who would be affected are low-wage workers, such as direct care workers, retail cashiers, and teacher assistants.

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