We are a statewide policy and advocacy organization dedicated to improving the health and well being of low income Californians by increasing their access to nutritious, affordable food.

Week in Review: Farm Bill Update

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6.15.2012 In the last week Farm Bill negotiations have taken off. Take a look at this week's events and a forecast of upcoming action on the Farm Bill. This Week

  • On June 12th, the Los Angeles City Council adopted a resolution to urge the Senate to reject the Agriculture Committee's cut to SNAP.  Here is a copy of the resolution: 
  • link      http://clkrep.lacity.org/onlinedocs/2012/12-0002-S59_RESO_06-08-2012.pdf
  • On June 13th, by a vote of 65 to 33, Senator Paul’s proposed amendment to block grant and cut SNAP funding was tabled with bipartisan support.
  • 14 Senators, including Senator Boxer (D-CA), signed-on in support of Senator Gillibrand’s amendment to restore the $4.5 billion cut to SNAP and provide an extra $500 million for the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program.

Learn more about Senator Gillibrand’s amendment. link

Learn more about the Heat and Eat option in California. link

  • A significant number of amendments to the Farm Bill were filed in the Senate proposal. Among those that threaten SNAP are amendments to require onerous verification of citizenship status, elimination of broad-based categorical eligibility options for states, elimination of state performance bonuses, and more.

Next Week

  • Senate leaders are expected to continue Farm Bill negotiations over the weekend in an attempt to continue floor discussions next week. With more than 200 amendments offered to date, Senate leaders will decide which amendments will be up for a floor vote. The amendment introduced by Senator Gillibrand could be among the amendments getting a floor vote.
  • It is expected that the Chairman of the House Committee on Agriculture, Congressman Lucas, will introduce a version of the Farm Bill next week and will likely hold a committee mark-up. There are no details on exactly when the introduction or mark-up will happen. The proposal may have up to $15 billion in SNAP cuts.
  • We expect Senate discussions on the Farm Bill to begin Monday afternoon.

To watch live, visit CSPAN. link

Take Action:

  • Continue to urge your Senators to oppose damaging amendments that would undermine SNAP’s structure (e.g. block grant) or reduce benefits (e.g. elimination of the Heat and Eat option). Call offices via the Capitol switchboard at 202.225.3121
  • Quite a few of our partner organizations have outlined potential actions you can take. Visit their website’s below.
    • Environmental Working Group. link
    • Food Research and Action Center. link
    • Roots of Change. link
    • Share Our Strength. link

Keep an eye open for more updates and actions you can take coming next week.

Questions? Contact Matt Sharp at 213.482.8200