A major deadline is looming next week that will strip $5 billion for the fiscal year from the nation's food stamp program.
The Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program — or SNAP — has seen several slight increases as part of the federal stimulus program that are all expiring at the end of the month unless Congress intervenes. Republicans want to cut $4 billion a year from the program where Democrats want to see cuts of $400 million.
Beginning in 2009, the federal stimulus increased SNAP funding by $45.2 billion, increasing the monthly benefit from $588 to $668 a month for a family of four. If the stimulus is not extended, SNAP recipients will receive a 5 percent cut, bringing the monthly benefit to $632 a month. The benefits currently go to 47 million Americans every month.
It's unlikely the two sides will be able to put a deal together before next week's deadline.