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Letters to the Editor Nov. 5, 2013

Farm bill threatens poor families, could cost gov't

I am writing you with concerns about the farm bill going under review. A lot of people may not realize this, but the farm bill addresses stricter eligibility requirements to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), known as CalFresh is California — also known as food stamps.

I read an article from the New York Times and CNBC about the budget cuts the bill suggests. Due to my professional experience with SNAP benefits I believe the program should have stricter eligibility requirements, but not necessarily the budget cuts that are being suggested.

Stricter eligibility requirements would hopefully, in time, reduce the program payout amounts as everyone knows about the economic hardships at this time. The New York Times reported that the bill suggests putting a time frame of three months on the program for each client.

I believe there are clients out there that need the benefits more than three months so putting a time frame on the program is not realistic or beneficial to the general population.

Basically the amendment could potentially discontinue families or individuals that are financially still eligible for the program and still in need of it. This seems to me that it would create a bigger financial hardship in the future for the government.

If families are not able to feed their children this seems to me it could lead to Child Protective Services getting involved due to neglect from lack of food or parents stealing food for their children from grocery stores.

The other amendment to the Farm Bill for the SNAP program is mandatory drug testing for all adults. The requirement would make all applicants submit and pass a drug test before benefits could be issued. Now the only negative belief I have for this suggestion would be that instead of denying a whole potential eligible household, why not make the household have a payee or voucher if the adult fails the testing?

The children should not be punished for the parent/guardian failing the drug testing.

If anyone is interested in learning more about this bill, check it on-line or check the current status of it at https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/113/hr2410.

Crystal Cooley, Crescent City 

We can't make Christmas celebration happen?

No Virginia there isn’t a Santa Claus ... at least not in Crescent City. Bah humbug to the powers that be that made the decision to cancel the Christmas parade and tree-lighting.

Maybe if you hadn’t cut our town tree down in the first place, we wouldn’t need so much money to light it? Santa can ride down Third Street in a fire truck, he doesn’t have to arrive by helicopter.

My father plays Santa (in another state), and always volunteers his time. No one in this town would do the same?

Money’s tight? Have the kids in metal shop build a 12-foot star and assemble it on the Surf Apartments building and we will light that instead.

Parades can be done with ribbons as trophies.

Community Christmas celebrations are about friends and neighbors coming together. We can’t figure this out, people?

Laurie M. Walker-Potter, Crescent City

 

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