Meeting Public Comments

Subcommittee meeting and times are as follows:
A bill for an act relating to the performance of an asset test to determine eligibility for supplemental nutrition assistance program benefits.
Subcommittee members: Jeneary-CH, Meyer, A., Wessel-Kroeschell
Date: Wednesday, January 26, 2022
Time: 1:30 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: RM 304.1
Names and comments are public records. Remaining information is considered a confidential record.
Comments Submitted:

01-25-2022
John Boller [Coralville Community Food Pantry]
This bill is bad for all Iowans. Imposing asset limits for SNAP will hurt rural Iowa families the most, as many rely on a second vehicle to commute to vital destinations. These families will be forced to make an impossible choice: scrap a vital mode of transportation or skip critical meals.In addition to the humanitarian impact, this bill will result in higher costs for the State of Iowa due to additional administrative burden. When Pennsylvania ended its asset test in 2015, it saved the State $3.5 million per year. Please make the right choice for Iowans by saying no to this costly and inhumane bill.
01-25-2022
Chelsea Sims []
This is Iowa. not owning a car means you likely can't get to work... Which means... You are more likely to experience poverty... Which means you are more likely need to food assistance. This is a cruel bill. Do not support means testing for hungry people.
01-25-2022
Cecelia Proffit []
My husband is a grad instructor at the University of Iowa. His monthly takehome pay is $1791.49. After paying rent ($1495) we have barely enough left over to pay our utilities. Thankfully, we currently qualify for SNAP, which allows us to buy food for ourselves and our two small children.Occasionally, thanks to things like stimulus checks, tax returns, and Christmas presents, we have more than $2000 in our bank account. My preference is to save whatever we can so that in case of an emergency we have a small reserve to draw on for things like car repairs, overthecounter medicines, etc. Implementing an asset cap for SNAP would disqualify us, forcing us to deplete our meager savings account in order to pay for food. Since our income has not increased, we would quickly drain our savings and then requalify for SNAP, forcing us back onto government welfare but this time even less able to take care of ourselves in an emergency. $2000 is a pittance. It isnt even a months worth of expenses for us. We would have absolutely no savings to fall back on in even the smallest emergency.An asset cap for SNAP wastes government resources punishing the most vulnerable Iowans. Surely theres a better use of our legislative priorities.
01-25-2022
Julie Neff []
Asset testing to determine and keep eligibility for food assistance is a poverty trap. These types of tests discourage and prevent folks struggling to lift themselves out of poverty to save money or establish an emergency fund. Asset tests which disallow benefits if two vehicles are owned discourage both adults in the household from holding jobs where public transportation is not available. These tests punish children with hunger through no fault of their own should their parents manage to put a little money aside for future use. Please look at the research behind asset testing for food benefits and make the right decision that will help families rather than punish them with hunger.https://tcf.org/content/commentary/howassettestspunishthepoor/?agreed=1
01-25-2022
Mary Radloff []
Placing assets limits on SNAP, especially vehicle limits, is bad public policy. Moreover, its cruel.
01-25-2022
Thomas Griffin []
Why pass a bill that is harmful for Iowans and bad for government? Increasing administrative costs and reducing benefits to people seems like the definition of wasting tax dollars. The purpose of taxation is to promote the public good what could be better than taking care of families in need? Instead of supporting bills that only help out the wealthy, Iowas conservative leaders need to get back to the principles that made the party effective: responsible policies that actually help Iowans. Please dont try to claim our shared values and then intentionally act to hurt children and families.
01-25-2022
Marisol Saldana Leza []
Shame on any politician that is on board with establishing asset limits for SNAP recipients and or potential applicants. Having an asset limit is really just another way for politicians who are out of touch with the reality of everyday daily living costs families and their children struggle with every day, and want to keep people in perpetual poverty. YES, by establishing asset limits, you want people to stay poor, so you can scapegoat and have somewhere and someone to point at when your employment figures dont satisfy your report numbers, your percentages, your own personal agendas. Politicians who support asset limits want people to work on poverty wages, work two, three and sometimes four jobs, but not make enough to sustain their families and gradually build and work their wayout AKA build assets and a sustainable income to try to pull their families out of the system. Politicians who are in line with this asset limit policy want people to be in comfortable poverty. You want to force them to stay poor. That's the reality. Shame on you and any misconception you have of people on SNAP. If you support asset limits you are not wanting for people to work their way out of the system, you want to keep them low, you are putting your foot on people's heads, you are wanting them to work themselves to death on poverty wages, and keep them in a situation where they have to choose whether to work themselves out of poverty, and lose any miniscule amount of help they get while on SNAP, OR just give up and stay poor and in a state of poverty. You politicians lose nothing either way, on your ivory towers. They say dont bite the hand that feeds you, but I say tear that hand into pieces if it prevents you from feeding yourself. People who are on snap and gaining assets while working to try to get out of poverty are trying to feed themselves out! You are the hand that is trying to prevent people from feeding themselves! Shame on you. I challenge you to live on SNAP benefits for a month. See if that won't open you mind, and make you close your mouth on things you know nothing about. I challenge you to meet with me and walk in my reality. If you deny this challenge, then you should deny HSB 508 .
01-25-2022
Jon Sims []
Putting asset limits on SNAP benefits is cruel and out of touch. The limit on owning more than one vehicle is especially disgusting. This is Iowa. Most parts of the state dont have good public transportation.
01-25-2022
Connor Ruggles []
This bill would decrease the help that parents in need in Iowa would receive, and the car check is one of the worst parts of this. In Iowa, no matter where you live, you basically have to have a car or some form of personal transportation to get anywhere, especially in an emergency. What are these people supposed to do in the winter? Punishing people who are already poor and making them poorer will not improve the quality of the state or help with the workforce shortage. In fact, it will worsen it! They will be incentivized to have less of an income so they can still qualify for benefits, and decrease their qualify of living so some state inspector doesnt come in and randomly determine their assets are worth too much and take their assistance away. This bill is just cruel for crueltys sake and its a shame this is the way Republicans are leading our state.
01-25-2022
Beth Younger []
This bill is very distinctly bad for Iowa and very bad for some of our most vulnerable citizens. We need to make it easier for low income folks to get the food they need; not more difficult. Please do not pass this horrible legislation.
01-25-2022
Amy Belice []
This is cruel bill and is also bad public policy. I oppose it. I support getting food to needy families when they need the support.
01-26-2022
Kristie Clark []
I want to express that putting an asset limit on a family could be extremely damaging. Families need to be able to have assets and save some money. Life has many unexpected costs. For example clothing cost for growing children and basic vehicle maintenance. When unexpected cost happen families should not be forced to decide between food and these cost. Passing this bill takes away food security from families struggling. Please do not pass this bill.
01-26-2022
Felicia Pieper []
Cars are a necessity in this state. Public transportation systems are inadequate to nonexistent in urban, suburban, and rural areas. Families with multiple jobs or mixed working schedules need cars. It abhorrent to punish people for needing transportation and food at the same time. The states minimum wage is not a livable wage. Im my county, as a single person with no kids I would need at least DOUBLE the minimum wage to make a livable wage according to MIT. Everyone deserves food.
01-26-2022
Felicia Pieper []
Cars are a necessity in this state. Public transportation systems are inadequate to nonexistent in urban, suburban, and rural areas. Families with multiple jobs or mixed working schedules need cars. It abhorrent to punish people for needing transportation and food at the same time. In my county, I would need to make at least DOUBLE the minimum wage to make a livable wage as a single person with no kids according to MIT. Everyone deserves food.
01-26-2022
Aimee Bartlett []
This is a bad bill that is set up to punish those that are struggling. There are certain assets, including cars, that are required to get from home to school to work in many areas as public transit is not available or timely. Tying those assets to eligibility is cruel and does not work to help the individual. All it will do is put the individuals more at risk and transfer the need to nonprofits which are all ready serve a high demand.
01-26-2022
Matt Trimble []
May the Iowa Lawmakers who support this legislation be reminded Whoever oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God. (Proverbs 14:31)
01-26-2022
Diana Boeglin []
During this pandemic, many people who previously made good financial decisions and had good jobs were suddenly out of work, and possibly facing high medical costs. This bill would strip away the safety net for these people. How can people get jobs without transportation? This hurts 2 parent families the most, because it restricts their ability to hold jobs. This bill is a waste of money.
01-26-2022
Conor Hilton []
I am writing to express my opposition to HSB 508. I am sympathetic to the desire to ensure that government funds are spent in thebest ways possible and in working to reduce people's dependence on government welfare.My family and I currently use SNAP, and have a savings periodically over the proposed $2000 asset cap, in hopes that we can have more financial security in the future when I am done with school. This proposed bill would likelyresultin us losing our SNAP benefits, only to force us to use our savings to eat, until we had nothing left, and then qualified for SNAP again, but in a significantly worse financial position. Rather than reduce dependance on the government, this proposed asset cap would likely increase such dependance, by making it much more difficult to get out of poverty.I urge you to oppose HSB 508 and therefore work towards giving some of the most needy among us the toolsto provide for themselves.
01-26-2022
Alison Bloom []
I strongly oppose this bill as it is not only bad public policy but also downright cruel to individuals who need the assistance. Placing asset limitations will take away needed benefits from many Iowans. Please do not pass the bill.