OG Kush can help you get food stamps?? We’ll be damned…
Medicinal Mary Jane Deductions For Food Stamp Applicants Shut Down
A little-known and infrequently used state provision that allowed some residents to deduct medical marijuana expenses from food stamp eligibility applications has been killed after a federal advisory threatened to exact penalties on the states’ programs.
The move comes on the heels of a report by The Oregonian that brought light to the measure’s use in Oregon, Maine and New Mexico. Under previous rules, elderly or disabled food stamp applicants in these states were allowed to deduct the cost of cultivating or procuring medical marijuana from income calculations regarding food stamp eligibility. Other prescription drugs are treated similarly, but the outlet’s inquiry about this specific practice led the U.S. Department of Agriculture to respond that it was not appropriate for marijuana, still illegal at the federal level, to be included.
Federal officials for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, which oversees food stamps, followed up with a memo to regional administrators earlier this week, advising them to halt the medical marijuana benefit.
“States that currently allow for the deduction of medical marijuana must cease this practice immediately and make any necessary corrections to their state policy manuals and instructions,” wrote Lizbeth Silbermann, director of the USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service’s program development division, according to The Oregonian. “States that are not in compliance may face penalties for any overissuance of SNAP benefits.”
We can’t imagine how many people that grow the sticky-icky green also need food stamps at the same damn time, but we’re sure that they can’t be too happy about this.
Image via Shutterstock
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