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Using exclusively federal funds available though the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), this legislation will help low-income working parents put adequate, nutritious food on the table for their children at no cost to the state.
Eligible households will receive an average monthly benefit of $125. The bill is highly targeted to working families, with more than 80% of the benefits going to households with children and more than 90% going to households with at least one working member.
The legislation will increase the gross income limit for SNAP eligibility from 130 to 165 percent of poverty, e.g., for a family of three, from $26,117 to $33,149. It is expected to help nearly 40,000 working families with high household expenses supplement their food budgets.
Representative Robyn Gabel, chief sponsor of the legislation, said, “Food banks report that low-income working families are increasingly relying on food panties, straining their resources. We can’t leave federal dollars on the table while Illinois working families are struggling to put enough food on their tables.”
SB 1847 would bring approximately $60 million in federally funded SNAP benefits to Illinois. According to Moody’s, SNAP provides strong economic stimulus, with every $1.00 increase in SNAP benefits generating $1.70 in local economic activity.
The Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law and Heartland Alliance for Human Needs and Human Rights have provided the advocacy leadership on SB 1847 with help from numerous other supporting organizations across the state.
Dan Lesser, Director of Economic Justice at the Shriver Center, said, “We are grateful that our elected representatives from across the political spectrum put aside their differences and supported this important legislation for low-income working families. We look forward to Governor Rauner signing the bill and thus demonstrating that, as he spoke about at the Illinois Hunger Summit a few weeks ago, he is dedicated to eradicating hunger in Illinois.”
The Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law provides national leadership in advancing laws and policies that secure justice to improve the lives and opportunities of people living in poverty. We specialize in practical solutions. We advocate for and serve clients directly, while also building the capacity of the nation’s legal aid providers to advance justice and opportunity for their clients. www.povertylaw.org.
Heartland Alliance for Human Rights and Human Needs—the leading anti-poverty organization in the Midwest—believes that all of us deserve the opportunity to improve our lives. Each year, we help ensure this opportunity for nearly one million people around the world who are homeless, living in poverty, or seeking safety. For more information, visit: www.heartlandalliance.org and follow us on twitter at @HeartlandPolicy.
The Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law provides national leadership in advancing laws and policies that secure justice to improve the lives and opportunities of people living in poverty. We specialize in practical solutions. We advocate for and serve clients directly, while also building the capacity of the nation’s legal aid providers to advance justice and opportunity for their clients. www.povertylaw.orgDownload this