Today, Congressman Sires voted against H.R. 1947, the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management (FARRM) Act, because of its devastating cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), also known as the food stamp program. In particular, the FARRM Act would slash the food stamp benefits by $20 billion.
"The FARRM Act makes harmful cuts to the food stamp program- preventing food aid for nearly two million people who are mostly working families and seniors. Additionally, the bill would cut 210,000 children off of free school lunch and breakfast programs," expressed Congressman Sires.
Congressman Sires joined over 70 of his Democratic colleagues in sponsoring an amendment to the FARRM Act, led by Congressman Jim McGovern (MA), which would have restored cuts to the food stamp program. Unfortunately, the amendment did not receive enough votes to be including in the final version of H.R. 1947. The FARRM Act is the legislative vehicle that authorizes major federal farm programs. In addition to cuts to food stamps, H.R. 1947 would extend most major federal farm, rural development and agricultural trade programs through Fiscal Year 2018. H.R. 1947 failed by a vote of 195 to 234 in the House of Representatives.
"I believe it is critical that Congress provides farmers and ranchers with the necessary tools to supply American consumers with a safe, abundant, and food supply, but I cannot support measures that achieve that goal by slashing nutrition assistance to our nation's most vulnerable citizens," stated Congressman Sires.