Poverty

H.R.1189 – Anti-hunger Empowerment Act of 2017

Short Titles as Introduced:

Anti-hunger Empowerment Act of 2017

Short Titles as Introduced for portions of this bill:
  • Beyond the Soup Kitchen Grants Program Act of 2017

Official Title as Introduced:

To amend the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 to provide greater access to the supplemental nutrition assistance program by reducing duplicative and burdensome administrative requirements, authorize the Secretary of Agriculture to award grants to certain community-based nonprofit feeding and anti-hunger groups for the purpose of establishing and implementing a Beyond the Soup Kitchen Pilot Program for certain socially and economically disadvantaged populations, and for other purposes.

Introduced in House (02/16/2017)

Anti-hunger Empowerment Act of 2017

This bill reduces administrative requirements for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as the food stamp program), authorizes funding to increase access to SNAP offices, and authorizes grants for community-based nonprofits to expand anti-hunger activities.

The bill amends the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 to repeal existing provisions regarding administrative costs and authorize the Department of Agriculture (USDA) to pay 75% of the administrative costs for state agencies to increase the operating hours of SNAP offices, reduce wait times, accept online applications, upgrade technology, and provide a checklist of required documents.

If a state agency believes that information provided by a SNAP applicant is incorrect or incomplete, the agency must notify the applicant in writing and include instructions for providing the required information. Unless the information is not provided in response to the request or it cannot be verified, a state must not require an applicant to appear in person. State agencies must not require fingerprints for any member of a household to participate in SNAP or receive benefits.

USDA must report annually to Congress on the comparative progress of states in improving access to SNAP.

Beyond the Soup Kitchen Grants Program Act of 2017

The bill establishes a Beyond the Soup Kitchen Pilot Program to provide grants to community-based nonprofit feeding and anti-hunger groups for programs to reduce hunger, increase the use of nutrition assistance and anti-poverty programs, bolster food security, assist individuals and families to develop assets, promote economic independence, improve nutrition, and reduce obesity.