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Possible food stamp cutbacks worry Southeast Texans
BEAUMONT--People receiving food stamps in Southeast Texas are worried about possible cutbacks in the program. House Republicans passed a bill this week that would reduce funding for food stamps by nearly $40 billion.
Veronica Lasterabbe is a mother of five from Beaumont. She relies on food pantries and food stamps to provide for eight people in her household. I need the help. I mean, I have to feed my family and I dont think its right theyre trying to reduce it, says Lasterabbe.
Now she worries how shell put food on the table if Congress approves cuts in the program.
I'm shortening out on a lot of things. I'm shortening down on bills, not paying my whole bill, trying to cut corners everywhere I can just to make it. So I don't know what's gonna happen, Lasterabbe says. You know, its gonna be a hard thing not just for me, for a lot of people.
Like Lasterabbe, 15 percent of Texans rely on the program to feed their families.
Food stamps could grow in this area to address the issue of food insecurity, but unfortunately in light of the cuts were hearing about, we certainly wont see that growth to take care of the food insecurity, Dan Maher, Executive Director for the Southeast Texas Food Bank , says.
Another cutback set to take effect November 1st could make the cuts even more crippling. When the 2009 Recovery Acts boost to the program expires, $36 a month could be taken away from a family of four.
If both cuts go through, Maher says it would amount to roughly $1 per person per meal.
Unfortunately for those who have depended on SNAP as a mechanism, those cuts are gonna be devastating for them because it will directly impact the availability of food for them, Maher says.
The bill will go to the Senate where it is expected to be rejected.