On Dec. 21, Gov.-elect John Bel Edwards asked the state's Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), as well as the federal government, to prevent the interruption of Supplemental Nutrition and Assistance Program (SNAP, or food stamps) benefits that are set to expire at the beginning of the year, after Gov. Bobby Jindal denied a federal waiver extending those benefits in October.
This affects single people between ages 18 and 49 without children who aren't working more than 20 hours a week or enrolled in a workforce training program. Edwards pledged that next year he'll focus on workforce training programs for people dependent on SNAP. Renewing the federally funded program comes at no extra cost for the state.
SNAP supports one in five Louisiana households. In 2013, the expiration of a four-year federal stimulus meant a $36 monthly reduction in benefits to an average Louisiana family of four.
Edwards takes office Jan. 11.