UPDATE: Food Stamp Benefits Decreased for Ohioans This Week

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UPDATE 10/31/2013 10:55 AM

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - About 1.8 million Ohioans will see their food stamp benefits decreased slightly at midnight Friday, and advocates for the poor say it's going to hurt.

The 2009 economic stimulus bill temporarily boosted the federal food stamp program for its 48 million recipients nationwide. On Friday, the boosted benefits will expire, resulting in automatic 5.5-percent cuts to monthly distributions.

For a mother with two children, the reduction means about $29 less per month. For a family of four, it's a cut of about $36 a month.

Lisa Hamler-Fugitt of the Ohio Association of Second Harvest Foodbanks says she expects the program will end up taking more hits. She said a farm bill in Congress could cut food stamps by up to $40 billion over the next decade.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
UPDATE 10/3/2013 04:55 PM

Starting October 1 Governor John Kasich limited food stamps for over 130,000 adults across Ohio - including Washington County.

The Gospel Mission Food Pantry in Marietta is now feeling that impact.

Owner Candy Waite says they saw and helped about 400 people Wednesday.

She says that is over 100 more than usual.

Waite says she saw many new faces and multiple people came up to her talking about the cut in food stamps.
A change in the food stamp program in Ohio.

Starting October 1st, Governor John Kasich is limiting food stamps for over 130,000 adults across Ohio.

If you are an able-bodied adult with no dependents, you will be required to work for your benefits.

If you have not been working your required hours each month for food stamps, you will now be required to work 20 hours a week.

Washington County is one of the counties put under this regulation.

"Our clients are already doing that component because we have been very strict about that. Some counties have not had the opportunity because they have a high cash case load which we don't because basically when you are coming in our office we are going to get you job searching the try to get you some type of employment," says Candy Nelson, with Washington County Job and Family Services.

All this past month and next week, Washington County Job and Family Services is putting on a class to help people find jobs.

Nelson says only around 25 people of the 100 they sent letters to have shown up.

Counties exempt from this are Adams, Brown, Clinton, Coshocton, Highland, Huron, Jefferson, Meigs, Monroe, Morgan, Muskingun, Noble, Ottawa, Perry, Pike and Scioto.

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