Military and food stamps

Lately a lot of complaints have been made about the food stamp program. Let's take a look a one group that gets food stamps -- 14,000 military families were on food stamps in 2000. The Pentagon does not keep track of any military families that are on food stamps. President Bush in 2001 decided to authorize a $500 subsistence pay increase that was taxable in order to help military families get off food stamps. It did not work. Military families increased on food stamps because food stamps are non-taxable. From 2008 to 2009 military families were using food stamps at twice the rate as civilians, 25 percent to 13 percent. About $31 million of food stamps were used in nationwide commissaries. From July 2009 to March 2011 in Oklahoma, where there are four military bases -- Fort Sill, Tinker AFB, Vance AFB, Altus AFB -- $1.8 million in food stamps was spent.
President Obama, in the 2010 Defense Authorization Bill, increased the food subsistence program for military families to $1,100 and made it non-taxable to help get families off food stamps. But will it? The military pay scale does not match cost of living anywhere in America. So if the U.S can only pay men and women who volunteer to serve and protect our freedom a wage that reflects poverty, how can anyone complain about someone else getting food stamps? So to those who complain, start lending a hand at food banks and homeless shelters. Help feed those who are having trouble during this hard, economic time. Remember neighbor helping neighbor --no matter who they are. Let's lend a hand. Rick Page Newnan

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