The governors of Oregon, Montana and Rhode Island joined state officials in New York, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania in increasing Low-Income Heat and Energy Assistance Payments to bypass the farm bill's food assistance cuts.
Where states were able to pay just one dollar per household per year under the LIHEAP program, the new farm law calls for an annual payment of at least 20 dollars.
The Congressional Budget Office had estimated 850-thousand households nationwide would see food stamp benefits reduced, saving the government $8.6 billion over 10 years. But the savings aren't panning out.
Oregon is allocating $2 million in state money to avoid losing $56 million in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance payments. Montana will spend $24,000 to save the $2 million dollars per year that state stands to lose.