On Friday, Rep. Diane Black (R., Tenn.) offered an amendment during House consideration of the Supporting Knowledge & Investing in Lifelong Skills Act (SKILLS Act), H.R. 803, regarding USDA outreach programs and the SNAP program (food stamps).
In part, Rep. Black stated that, “My amendment would express the sentiment of the House that the funding for the United States Department of Agriculture, USDA, marketing and outreach program currently used to increase participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, SNAP, better known as ‘food stamps,’ would instead be used to fund job training programs contained in the SKILLS Act. These precious taxpayer dollars should be used to facilitate upward mobility and employment, not dependence.”
During a brief colloquy on the Amendment, House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas (R., Okla.) indicated that many of the issues raised by Rep. Black were addressed in the 2012 Farm Bill passed last year by the Agriculture Committee, and noted that attention to the USDA-SNAP concerns would be considered again when the Committee takes up a Farm Bill this Congress.
Chairman Lucas noted that, “I appreciate the gentlelady from Tennessee’s attempt at reform here. In fact, the farm bill passed by the Agriculture Committee last Congress accomplished the goal of her amendment by preventing USDA from promoting the SNAP program…I pledge to work with the gentlelady to include language in the farm bill we intend to bring to the floor later this year to accomplish her goals.”
Rep. Black then withdrew her amendment.
A replay of the discussion is available here: