10 Feb 2014

CNMI has additional $32.5m for pilot food stamp program

3:40 pm on 10 February 2014

The Northern Marianas has welcomed a 32.5 million US dollar pilot food stamp programme after the US President Barack Obama signed a nearly one trillion US dollar agricultural spending bill.

The US Public Law sets aside two millions for the US Department of Agriculture to study whether the CNMI can administer the national Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, SNAP.

In addition, the territory's delegate to the US Congress, Gregorio Sablan, says beginning in October 2015, 30.5 million will be available to raise benefits for families in need in the CNMI - whether or not the islands are part of SNAP.

Mr Sablan says he doesn't want food stamps to be a way of life in the CNMI, but only as a safety net for people until they can help themselves by getting jobs.