Oregon Senate Republicans must return to work

June 26, 2019Last week, the Oregon Senate Republicans left our state capitol in Salem.

They have yet to return to do their jobs as required by the constitution, leaving critical anti-hunger programs hanging in the balance, when 1 in 8 of our neighbors are facing food insecurity. And 1 in 5 children.

Funds already approved (which only require a final vote) that will be lost if the Oregon legislature fails to complete their job by June 30 include:

  • Oregon Hunger Response Fund – $4.3 million
  • Farm Direct for WIC and Low-Income Seniors – $1.2 million 
  • Senior meal programs – $2.2 million
  • SNAP Double-Up Food Bucks Program – $1.5 million
  • Farm to School program – $10 million

One critical program the food bank has spent the last eight months building support for is the SNAP Double-Up Food Bucks Program, ensuring that it’s more widely accessible in Oregon. This program has proven effective at building better public health outcomes, fighting hunger and supporting Oregon’s farmers. It would be a shame to lose all of the hard work we’ve put into this effort.

Additionally, three key tax credits benefiting farmers and low-income Oregonians are set to expire in 2019 unless the legislature renews them. These include:

  • Crop Donation Tax Credit for Oregon farmers, who donate millions of pounds of fresh produce to the Oregon Food Bank Network
  • Earned Income Tax Credit, which benefits hundreds of thousands of low-income Oregonians 
  • Agriculture Workforce Housing Tax Credit that provides farmers/investors a tax credit for building, acquiring or rehabbing farmworker housing

Oregonians are depending on a fully funded and operational safety net of human services to be there when we need it. The Oregon Food Bank Network serves 260,000 people per month. If the Oregon legislature does not finish their job by June 30, critical anti-hunger services in Oregon will lose funds. 

Oregonians deserve a reliable safety net to help them through difficult times. We need the legislature to do its job so that food banks can do theirs.

Oregon Senate walkout

You can help!

Tell your legislator how lack of funding for anti-hunger programs affects you and/or your community.

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