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Jaclyn Kelley / Eyewitness News
Email: jkelley@wwltv.com | Twitter: @jkelleyWWL

Families across the United States will soon see a decrease in their food stamp dollars, as cuts begin to go into effect Friday. The decrease comes on the heel of bill negotiations in Congress that would bring more cuts to the food stamp program.

And it is estimated that food banks like Second Harvest, will likely double their distribution if more cuts are made to the food stamp program.

Two factors come into play: one is that stimulus money given to the program expires Friday; and then according to the Department of Agriculture, the decrease in food stamp dollars means that a family of four will get $36 less a month.

Food stamps now cost the United States almost $80 billion dollars a year, and this new House Farm Bill, which came into effect because of the cuts, proposes to decrease the amount by about $4 billion dollars annually, where as the originally proposed Senate bill would only cut one-tenth of that amount.

The most important issue to note however, when looking at these numbers, is that eligibility requirements would also change.

The proposed cuts alone, would deliver a devastating blow to the more than 47 million Americans who currently use the food stamp program as Friday they will see their benefit amounts go down.

The congressional budget office says roughly 3.8 million people will lose their benefits in 2014 if the House bill were to become law.

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