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Food stamp cuts offset Social Security COLA boost for some

No one would argue that living on Social Security is living the high life. The amounts that are provided from the government, whether in the form of retirement benefits or benefits for total disability, are what many experts would characterize as bare bones. Many recipients also receive assistance in the form of food stamps, but even with that help find their money stretched to the breaking point.

Recently the Social Security Administration announced that all 57 million individuals receiving retirement or disability benefit payments will see their monthly checks increase by 1.5 percent. What might seem like a raise, though, is really nothing more than a recognition that the cost of living is going up. The boost is intended to keep beneficiaries somewhat stable economically.

The problem, according to some experts, is that food stamp support has been cut by 13.6 percent as of the beginning of this month. And that cut is actually deeper than the COLA increase people on Social Security will be getting after the start of the year.

One woman who is on disability says she's already seen food stamps cut by $20 a month. When her COLA comes through after the first of the year, it will only be about $15 extra a month.

Interestingly, there doesn't seem to have been a lot of media coverage about this apparent robbing of Peter to pay Paul. Pundits speculate this is because members of Congress see no benefit in shedding light on the matter. They say the food stamp cuts are the result of some legislative missteps by Democrats and the amount of the cuts are greater than Republicans would have pushed for.

The woman who is out the money says she doesn't really care who's to blame. She says she'd just like them to find a better solution.

Source: HuffingtonPost.com, "Food Stamp Cut Wipes Out Some Americans' Social Security Increases," Arthur Delaney, Nov 11, 2013

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