In follow-up to our broader summary (here) of the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions Act (Heroes Act) (H.R. 6800), we wanted to provide some additional detail regarding the nutrition program policies sought by Democrats in Title VI of the bill. We would note, again, that the Heroes Act is largely a “marker” bill that stakes out House Democrats’ starting position in a debate between both chambers and the White House that could drag out for weeks.
Among other changes, Title VI nutrition provisions would:
- Increase the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefit allotments by 15% and raise the minimum to $30 per month.
- Exclude Pandemic Unemployment Compensation as countable income for SNAP benefit calculation.
- Waive all work requirements for SNAP and prevent funding for the Department of Agriculture (USDA) to implement or finalize the Able-Bodied Adults Without Dependents (ABAWD), Broad Based Categorical Eligibility, and Standard Utility Allowance rules.
- Provide additional funding to States for SNAP administration this fiscal year, to meet the increased need for SNAP.
- Direct USDA to allow the use of SNAP to purchase hot foods or hot food products ready for immediate consumption from authorized retail food stores.
Among other changes, Division R Child Nutrition Program provisions would:
- Provide emergency funding for Child Nutrition Programs who are seeing drastically reduced per-meal reimbursements.
- Extend the Pandemic electronic benefit transfer (EBT) program, authorized by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, through the summer.
- Allow USDA to increase the value of the WIC Cash Value Voucher (CVV) from $9 for children and $11 for women per month to $35 per month for women and children though the end of fiscal year 2020.
For a summary of the bill’s proposed supplemental appropriations for each of these nutrition programs, please see our prior bill summary here.