In a Monday evening vote of the Maryland Senate, the body unanimously passed legislation that provides increased funding for Maryland Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients. The legislation (Senate Bill 218) is sponsored by Senator Cory McCray (D- District 45) and allows for counties and municipalities to claim monies to increase the SNAP benefit by $30 per child in the months of June, July, and August and $10 per month in the month of December.
In a February 6th hearing of the Budget and Taxation Committee, McCray stressed the need for the legislation noting that it fills a gap for parents and children. He stated: “Senate Bill 218 ensures that young people have the security of food when they’re home with their loved ones.”
According to independent analysis from the Maryland Department of Legislative Services: “The U.S. Department of Agriculture indicates that childhood hunger is more acute during the summer months, as many children do not have access to free lunch and breakfast programs provided in schools. Access to such programs is also limited in December, when many children are on an extended break from school.”
McCray is joined in co-sponsorship of Senate Bill 218 by sixteen bipartisan Senate colleagues including Senators Eckardt (R- District 37), Edwards (R- District 1), Elfreth (D- District 30), Feldman (D- District 15), Ferguson (D- District 46), Griffith (D- District 25), Guzzone (D- District 13), King (D- District 39), Lee (D- District 16), Peters (D- District 23), Rosapepe (D- District 21), Salling (R- District 6), Serafini (R- District 2), Smith (D- District 20), Washington (D- District 43), and Zucker (D- District 14). The bill is cross-filed in the House of Delegates as House Bill 338. House Bill 338 is sponsored by Delegate Pamela Queen (D- District 14) and co-sponsored by over forty members of the Maryland House of Delegates.
Senate Bill 218 now moves to the House of Delegates for consideration. House Bill 338 passed the House of Delegates on February 15th and is now before the Senate Budget and Taxation Committee for consideration. House Bill 338 is scheduled for a hearing in the Budget and Taxation Committee on February 20th. No House hearing information for Senate Bill 218 is available at this time. All legislation must successfully pass both the Maryland Senate and the Maryland House of Delegates by Sine Die on Monday, April 8th to be sent to Governor Hogan to be approved or vetoed.