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Assembly committee approves no junk food bill for food support recipients


MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - A Wisconsin Assembly committee endorsed a bill today to make food stamp recipients eat healthier.

Seven Republicans voted yes and two Democrats voted no, as the Assembly State Affairs panel endorsed limits on the junk food people can buy with their Food-Share benefits.

Neenah Republican Dean Kaufert amended his original bill to include a few more specifics. Two-thirds of all monthly Food-Share benefits must be spent on items like bread, fruits, vegetables, and milk. The rest can be spent on any authorized foods.

Because taxpayers cover the Food-Share benefits, Kaufert says they have a financial interest in getting recipients to eat healthier.

But Democrats on the panel said Kaufert was only trying to score political points.

The full Assembly will vote on the bill next month.

A federal waiver would be needed to adopt the requirements.  Previous attempts in other states have failed.