On Saturday, President Donald Trump’s administration announced a major reorganization of the US government’s domestic travel agencies.
Under the plan, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will create two new divisions to focus on domestic travel and domestic issues.
The Department of Agriculture (USDA) will expand its food stamp program to include food and nutritional support for low-income families.
The USDA also will start accepting applications for new positions to help with the administration’s food stamp programs.
The Trump administration’s first official announcement of the reorganization came on February 5, when the Department in its press release noted the Department’s goal to increase food stamp benefits by $100 billion over the next five years.
The Trump administration has since promised to increase the program’s benefits by an additional $250 billion.
“Our priorities in 2019 are to increase our food stamp rolls, provide financial support for our farmers, and reduce poverty and hunger through food assistance,” DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen told reporters at the time.
“There’s no doubt that our food stamps program is an important lifeline for people who need help and want to improve their economic situation,” Nielsen continued.
“We’re also working to strengthen the agricultural workforce and make sure that the rural economy remains strong.”
According to the Department, the USDA’s food stamps and nutrition assistance programs provide an estimated $1.3 trillion in assistance to individuals and families.
Nielsen also noted that the USDA would begin accepting applications from families who qualify for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits to help meet the needs of these low-wage families.
The new USDA division will also focus on helping the agricultural economy.
Under USDA Director of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, the department has launched several initiatives to promote farm production and reduce the environmental impacts of agriculture.
The USDA will also begin accepting more applications for SNAP and SNAP-E benefits, and will also work with states to promote job creation in agriculture.
“The USDA’s mission is to provide financial assistance to help farmers and small business owners who have trouble getting the money they need to pay the rent, pay the mortgage, or feed their family,” Vilsak said in the press release.
“I am committed to working with the Trump administration to make sure those who are struggling to get by can get the help they need.”
A White House spokesperson later clarified that Nielsen did not specify any new jobs, but the spokesperson said the administration would be “exploring ways to expand the USDA to support more Americans in agriculture.”
“Our priority for 2019 is to increase funding to support families, expand the food stamp food bank, and strengthen the agriculture workforce,” the spokesperson added.
“The Trump Administration will be exploring ways to make this happen through additional funding and by creating new jobs.”
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