Pensacola, fl

A federal judge annulled a rule that would have stripped nearly 700,000 people from food stamps, saying the Agriculture Department had been completely silent about how many Americans would have been denied benefits.

“The final rule approved by the administration of President Donald Trump, the subject of contention in this litigation constitutes a radical and sudden change to decades of regulatory practice, leaving states scrambling and dramatically increasing food insecurity for tens of thousands,” said Chief Justice of the US District Court in Washington, Beryl Hoyle. Of the Americans. “

The 67-page ruling says the agency has not adequately explained how the rule complies with federal laws, nor how “reasonable” it is.

A coalition of prosecutors from 19 states, the District of Columbia and New York City filed a lawsuit in January challenging the USDA rule.

The rule, announced in December, was to require more food stamp recipients to work in order to receive benefits by limiting the state’s ability to waive existing work authorizations. It was scheduled to come into effect on April 1, but a judge blocked it in mid-March, and Congress suspended authorizations to work on the food stamp program as part of the coronavirus relief package that month.

This requirement would have resulted in 688,000 non-disabled adults of working age without a breadwinner losing SFP benefits, or SNAP, where food stamps are officially known, according to estimates by the Ministry of Agriculture, which were calculated prior to the pandemic.

According to the ruling, registration of food stamps increased during the Corona outbreak as millions of Americans lost their jobs. As of May, more than 6 million people registered for benefits, an increase of 17%.

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