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“I’m just going to have to go back to not eating very much, about a meal a day.”

Teresa Calderez, just one of the many Americans who have felt the negative effects of the end of pandemic assistance programs, like boosted Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, better known as SNAP benefits. The supplemented benefits ended this month, cutting payments by about $90 a month for individuals and $250 or more for some families. According to the Department of Agriculture, SNAP cost $119 billion last year with the additional pandemic-related payments, which equates to about 2 percent of the national budget for 2023. (NPR — March 17, 2023)

More Quotes
  • Tony Caligiuri, president of the preservation group Colorado Open Lands, regarding how a heavy-precipitation year can reduce the feelings of urgency to address longer-term issues of water storage and conservation. Though much of the West has had record-breaking levels of rain and snow this year, it’s unlikely that it will create enough wiggle room to wind back the clock on water use limitation proposals and other water-saving measures and offset drought conditions. (Associated Press — March 16, 2023)
  • Nebraska state Sen. Machaela Cavanaugh, regarding her three-week filibuster in opposition to a bill that would outlaw gender-affirming therapies for those 18 and younger. When the bill advanced out of committee, Cavanaugh promised to filibuster every bill that comes before the Legislature this year — even the ones she supports. March 15 is the halfway point of this year’s 90-day session and not a single bill has passed due to Cavanaugh’s filibustering; since she began her blockade, only three bills have advanced from the first of three rounds of debate required to pass a bill in Nebraska. (Associated Press — March 14, 2023)
  • The office of Tennessee Lt. Gov. Randy McNally, regarding controversial comments from McNally’s Instagram account with a young man who was posting nearly naked pictures on the social media platform. In one instance, McNally’s account commented on a revealing picture of the 20-year-old with heart and fire emojis; in another, the young man appears to not be wearing underwear, and McNally's account posted a comment saying, “great picture! Best wishes for continued health and happiness.” McNally has issued an apology, stating that he did not intend to embarrass his friends, family or members of the Legislature. (The Hill — March 14, 2023)
  • Ten-year-old Fabian Aguirre, a student at V.H. Lassen Academy of Science and Nutrition, regarding the challenge that it can be to learn while hungry. All students at Fabian’s Phoenix-area school are eligible to receive free meals. More than 34 million people, including 9 million children, across the country are food insecure. (Associated Press — March 11, 2023)
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