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Thousands on the First Coast are days away from getting their food stamp benefits cut

8:23 PM, Oct 30, 2013   |    comments
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Department of Children and Families said about 190,000 people in Duval county alone will see food stamp benefits cuts at the end of the month. 

Nicole Butler is one of those people.

"It's gonna hurt a lot," she said.

The cuts are happening because money from a federal stimulus in 2009 has run out.  That means one person on food stamps will lose about $11 a month in benefits.  However, a family of six will lose more. Butler will lose a maximum of $20, since she's trying to feed herself and her daughter.  Thought $20 a month may not seem like a big cut, Butler said it's devastating.

"If you go to the grocery store now, meat is expensive, canned goods are too," she said.

Butler said she'll need to spend every penny of her benefits, and use cash she's saved up to make ends meet.  She said it won't be easy.

Food banks across the country will also feel the pinch.  Bruce Ganger from the Second Harvest Food Bank said there's usually a higher demand toward the end of the month, when people's benefits run out. Ganger said with the benefits running out sooner, there's a bigger demand on his facility to help those in need.

First Coast News

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