Tennessee lawmaker seeks ban on use of food stamps for buying junk food

Tennessee lawmaker seeks ban on use of food stamps for buying junk food

A Tennessee lawmaker has proposed a new bill that aims to prevent people from using food stamps to purchase items that have no nutritional value, such as soda, candy and ice cream.

Rep. Sheila Butt, a Republican from Columbia, said her measure HB 43 would prohibit individuals from using food stamps to buy items are high in calories, sugar or fat, and have low nutritional value.

Under the proposed measure, state officials would be able to seek a waiver to produce a list of food items that would be prohibited due to their low nutritional value.

In addition, it would impose penalties on sellers who would sell prohibited items to individuals on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

Announcing her measure, Butt said, “These are the same foods that we have banned from our children’s lunchrooms. By allowing their purchase with EBT cards, we are actually enhancing diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and obesity in at-risk communities.”

Any individual or business that would violate the potential law would be fined $1,000 and $2,000 for the first and second offenses, respectively. Third offence will attract a hefty fine of $5,000.

Tags: 
Category: 
Location: