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March 31, 2017 at 3:15 PM
BY
CBPP

This week at CBPP, we focused on the federal budget and taxes, food assistance, housing, family income support, state budgets and taxes, health care, and Social Security.

  • On the federal budget and taxes, Chye-Ching Huang pointed out that the House GOP and Trump tax plans fail to keep three Republican promises on tax reform. Isaac Shapiro, David Reich, Chloe Cho, and Richard Kogan cautioned that the Trump budget would eliminate four block grants that mainly serve low-income people and set the stage for substantial cuts to others. Cho also highlighted several domestic program areas that are already underfunded and would shrink further under the Trump budget. Emily Horton looked back at the impact of the Bush 2001 and 2003 tax cuts.
  • On food assistance, Ed Bolen and Stacy Dean explained that waivers from the three-month limit on SNAP (formerly food stamp) benefits for unemployed childless adults give states important flexibility. Dean testified before a House subcommittee on SNAP’s effectiveness and ways to strengthen the program. Dottie Rosenbaum warned that block-granting SNAP would risk serious harm to millions of low-income families, seniors, and people with disabilities. Steven Carlson and Zoë Neuberger detailed WIC’s critical role in providing nutritious foods, nutrition education, breastfeeding support, and referrals to health care and social services for millions of low-income families. We also created infographics on the many ways WIC improves health.
  • On housing, Barbara Sard kicked off our “Vouchers Work” blog series by highlighting how the Housing Choice Voucher Program helps working people, families with children, seniors, and people with disabilities afford decent, stable housing. Will Fischer showed that vouchers, by helping families create a stable housing environment, improve children’s long-term chances for success. Douglas Rice warned that 55,000 vouchers are at risk under the funding bills that House and Senate committees approved last summer. We updated our state-by-state fact sheets on federal rental assistance.
  • On family income support, Ife Floyd, LaDonna Pavetti, and Liz Schott explained that the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) block grant is serving fewer poor families and is especially ineffective in some states.
  • On state budgets and taxes, Elizabeth McNichol and Samantha Waxman reported that 25 states are facing or have addressed revenue shortfalls this year, in some cases due to ill-advised tax policy choices. Michael Mazerov noted that Amazon is finally collecting and remitting state and local sales tax on the sales of its own merchandise in all 45 states with such a tax.
  • On health care, following the failure of the House Republican health care bill, Robert Greenstein issued a statement urging Congress to focus on strengthening the Affordable Care Act rather than dismantling it. Edwin Park, Matt Broaddus, Hannah Katch, and Jesse Cross-Call answered frequently asked questions about Medicaid.
  • On Social Security, Kathleen Romig provided context for a recent Washington Post story on disability receipt in one Alabama county.

Chart of the week: Who is Helped by Housing Choice Vouchers?

 

A variety of news outlets featured CBPP’s work and experts recently. Here are some highlights:

When the President Is Ignorant of His Own Ignorance
New York Times
March 30, 2017

Six Ways to Tell If Trump Is Sabotaging Obamacare
Atlantic
March 29, 2017

Why Trump's Cuts to Social Programs Are Even Harsher Than His Budget Suggests
Fiscal Times
March 29, 2017

House panel discusses SNAP program, work requirements
USA Today
March 28, 2017