Under orders to whittle agriculture spending by $3 billion, Republicans in Congress propose to slash food programs for the poor by $574 million and subsidies and conservation programs by $1 billion each, The Associated Press has learned.
The plan by Senate Agriculture Committee chairman Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., would reduce farmers' payments by 2.5 percent across the board, slashing spending by $1.145 billion over five years. That's half the 5 percent the Bush administration sought earlier this year.
The $574 million cut in food stamps would come from restricting access to this benefit for certain families that receive other government assistance. The restriction would shut an estimated 300,000 people out of the program.