Monday, January 23, 2017

Student Debt for Seniors?

"There are more people over the age of 65 with student loan debt than ever before, according to a new report from the Government Accountability Office.

Those who are in default may have faced decades of reduced wages and benefits. In 2015, the government reduced Social Security checks for a total of 173,000 Americans, up 380 percent from 36,000 in 2002. That includes younger people receiving Social Security disability payments as well."

Source: Fox 61 News,12/30/16, 

CT Unveils First Food Waste-to-Energy Facility

"Quantum Biopower celebrated the completion of Connecticut’s first food waste to renewable energy facility in Southington with a ribbon cutting ceremony on Nov. 15. The ceremony, held on Connecticut Recycles Day, marked the completed construction of Connecticut’s first anaerobic digester.

The state of Connecticut’s food waste diversion mandate, which requires that certain food waste generators producing more than 2 tons of food waste per week or more separate out that waste from their other garbage and send it to a compost facility or digester for recycling, was a driving force in the development and completion of the digester."

Source: Renewable Energy From Waste, 12/20/16, Learn More...

Friday, January 20, 2017

EITC Return Delayed

Each year, more than 27 million low- and moderate-income households file taxes and receive a refund from the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). For the first time in 2017, many early filers—more than half of those claiming the EITC and Child Tax Credit (CTC)—will wait longer for their refunds.

The Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes (PATH) Act of 2015, which made provisions of the EITC permanent, also required the IRS to delay tax refunds for those claiming the EITC or the refundable portion of the CTC until at least February 15 in an effort to verify wages and reduce errors. 
 This delay could have serious effects on families who depend on the EITC and CTC. The study found that many families (over 70% of early filers with children) rely on the timeliness of their refund immediately to pay down debt on a car or house.

Source: Center for Law & Social Policy, 1/4/17, EITC Delay

New Rules for SNAP Retailers

SNAP users may soon begin to see more variety of SNAP-eligible foods in their local groceries and bodegas. 

Starting May 17, 2017, stores that want to begin participating in SNAP will be expected to stock at least 84 items (1) vegetables or fruits; (2) dairy products; (3) meat, poultry, or fish; and (4) bread or cereals. Stores that are already participating will have to meet these minimums by January 17, 2018. 
Retailers will have to stock at least 3 units (bags, cans, boxes) of 7 different kinds of products of those 4 staple food categories.

Different brands, formats, flavors, or types of the same product are not considered different varieties. Apples, carrots, and pears are considered three different varieties in the vegetables or fruits staple food category, but tomato sauce, tomatoes, and 100% tomato juice are only considered one variety in the vegetables or fruits staple food category (tomato).

Source: USDA, 12/24/16, SNAP Retailer Rules

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Americans Burdened with High-Deductable Health Plans

"High-deductible health plans have multiplied in recent years. But they may pose a significant financial burden on Americans with chronic conditions, two new studies suggest.

One study finds a greater likelihood that out-of-pocket spending for health care will consume 10 percent or more of family income for someone with a long-term condition such as arthritis, high blood pressure or a mood disorder and a high-deductible insurance plan."

Source: U.S News & Health Report, 1/10/17,

Foodshare Welcomes New VP of Development

Earlier this week, Foodshare's President and CEO, James Arena-DeRosa, along with all other staff members welcomed our new Vice President of Development, Diana Goode. Diana happily mingled with staff over coffee and bagels along with other light refreshments.

Before joining Foodshare as a fellow staff member, Diana had already  been strongly connected to our  mission as Executive Director of Gifts of Love Inc, one of Foodshare's partner agencies. Diana has also been a devoted member of Foodshare's Strategic Implementation Committee.

As VP of Development, Diana will primarily be responsible for developing and implementing strategies that meet and enhance Foodshare's budget through solicitation and stewardship of individual and institutional donors.

Welcome to the team Diana!

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

FPA Launches "A Place at The Table" Campaign

"The Food Policy Action Education Fund just recently announced the launch of A Place at the Table, a three-year national media campaign to inspire America and our leaders to make ending hunger in the U.S. a national priority.  Backed by $300M of donated media from major media partners; including broadcast, digital, out of home and print advertising."

The campaign kicked off with a public service announcement made by First Lady Michelle Obama:


Source: Food Policy Action, 1/4/17, Learn More...