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Food Stamp Cuts Nationwide Hit Home In NWA

NORTHWEST ARKANSAS --- 47 million Americans are about to see their food stamp funds dwindle and in Northwest Arkansas, 78,000 people will see the same.
NORTHWEST ARKANSAS -- Nearly 78,000 people rely on the Supplemental Nutrition and Assistance Program - also known as SNAP. Starting Friday, those funds are being cut.  So, why the cut now?

A temporary benefit enacted during the recession for the Food Stamp Program has expired. So, the extra help for those in the program is gone. In Arkansas, the cuts are going to affect 200,000 people in Arkansas. Those going to hurt the most? Children and the elderly.

Children like Erika Palo's little boys. Erika is a single mother and she takes part in the government funded program. On Friday, her benefits will be slashed by ten cents a meal.

"They're very important to me. I depend on that every month, every week. My kids depend on them. Without them, I wouldn't be able to depend them," said Erika.

Laura Kellams is with the Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families.  She said that the dime out of every meal is going to make a depressing dent in the pockets of SNAP recipients.

"While that may not sound like much to someone who is middle or upper income, we are talking about a lot of money for a family per month when  you're living on the edge," said Kellams.

For Erika's family of three, the cut will be nearly $30 less a month. That's a total of $319 for November 2013 through September 2014, the remaining months of fiscal year 2014.

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