Tribpedia: Food Stamps Program

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, is the federal food stamps program administered by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. It helps low-income families buy groceries. Recipients in Texas use the Lone Star card, similar to a credit card, to purchase food items.

Families are eligible for the program if they make no more than 130 percent of ...

Tiger Whitehead and his children Logic and Domnick, who used SNAP and the the Sustainable Food Center Farmer's Market double dollars coupons, shopping at the Farmer's Market at 2835 East MLK Blvd. in Austin on March 19, 2013.
Tiger Whitehead and his children Logic and Domnick, who used SNAP and the the Sustainable Food Center Farmer's Market double dollars coupons, shopping at the Farmer's Market at 2835 East MLK Blvd. in Austin on March 19, 2013.

Texas Households on Food Stamps Almost Tripled Since 2000

In 2013, 1.3 million Texas households received food stamps — up from 505,968 in 2000, according to figures released Tuesday by the U.S. Census Bureau.

School children at Cantu Elementary in San Juan, Texas, eat their free breakfast, Wednesday April 24, 2013.
School children at Cantu Elementary in San Juan, Texas, eat their free breakfast, Wednesday April 24, 2013.

Ag Candidates Weigh In on School Lunch Program

One of the Texas agriculture commissioner's biggest jobs is running the federally funded school breakfast and lunch program. Read what the Republican and Democratic candidates for agriculture commissioner have to say about the program. 

Tiger Whitehead and his children Logic and Domnick, who used SNAP and the the Sustainable Food Center Farmer's Market double dollars coupons, shopping at the Farmer's Market at 2835 East MLK Blvd. in Austin on March 19, 2013.
Tiger Whitehead and his children Logic and Domnick, who used SNAP and the the Sustainable Food Center Farmer's Market double dollars coupons, shopping at the Farmer's Market at 2835 East MLK Blvd. in Austin on March 19, 2013.

Nutrition Benefits a Mixed Bag for Markets

About 50 Texas farmers markets take SNAP benefits, WIC benefits or both. The programs are not well utilized, but proponents say it's important to provide as many healthy food options as possible for Texans who use nutrition benefits.

TribWeek: In Case You Missed It

Root's scoop on Rick Perry's working retirement, Aaronson maps poverty in Texas, Aguilar on a voting rights warning shot from the U.S. Attorney General, Galbraith on the disclosure of chemicals used in fracking operations, Grissom on the drop in executions, Hamilton and M. Smith on UT-Austin President Bill Powers' rough year, Murphy and Tan and Dehn on the shortage of psychiatrists and Ramshaw on the federal refusal to exclude operators like Planned Parenthood from family planning programs: The best of our best content from December 12 to 16, 2011.

TribWeek: In Case You Missed It

Root on Rick Perry's controversial new ad, Tan on the fallout, Aaronson's map of where the food stamps go, my interview with Stephen Colbert's campaign finance lawyer, Aguilar on the drop in the number of illegal immigrants crossing into Texas, Hamilton on the growth of unregulated colleges, Galbraith's interview with S. David Freeman on the environmental failures of public power, Grissom on the newest state agency and and Hamilton and M. Smith on a sudden change at the top of UT's law school: The best of our best content from December 5 to 9, 2011.

Updated Interactive: Food Stamp Distribution Map

Fewer Texans will receive food stamps in December than in November, but the number is still up overall since 2005 as the national recession continues. Our updated interactive map allows you to explore the number of food stamp recipients in your county and the economic impact of the program.

TribWeek: In Case You Missed It

Aaronson maps the growth of poverty in Texas, Aguilar on the suicide of an illegal immigrant, Galbraith on the prospect of more rolling blackouts, Grissom on a prosecutor's memory lapse, Hamilton on the prospect of public universities undergoing a sunset review, Murphy's latest awesome redistricting interactive, Ramsey on a stumbling start to the 2012 election season, Root on Rick Perry's latest populist tirade, M. Smith on the boom in for-profit teacher certification programs and Tan on the fight against cervical cancer in ... Africa: The best of our best content from November 28 to December 2, 2011.

TribWeek: In Case You Missed It

Aaronson on the sharp rise in the number of Texans on food stamps, Aguilar investigates the Black Market Peso Exchange, Grissom on the humbling of John Bradley, Hamilton on the tweet heard round the world, Ramsey and Murphy on the newest redistricting maps, Ramsey on why Formula 1 screeched to a halt, Ramshaw and Tan scrutinize Rick Perry's attack on congressional insider trading, Root on Perry's plan for a "part-time citizen Congress" and M. Smith on already ugly State Board of Ed races: The best of our best content from November 14-18, 2011.

More Texans are Poor, Uninsured

Census Data released Thursday shows a troubling rise in the number of impoverished Americans and Texans — along with a shift in the number of Texans who have insurance. Mose Buchele of KUT News reports.

TribWeek: In Case You Missed It

Galbraith on grass, federal money and efforts to prevent another dust bowl, Ergenbright on school suspensions and who gets punished; Aguilar's interview with Alan Bersin, whose job is to keep the U.S./Mexico border secure, M. Smith on why it would be harder than you think to ditch the 14th Amendment, Adler and me on whether controversy is politically contagious, Ramshaw on the flap over funding for the state's institutions for the disabled (it's not about the money), my meditation on the state's fiscal woes (including a $1.3 billion deficit in the current budget), Philpott on proposed cuts to the state's food stamp program, Grissom on the push by Hidalgo County officials for a special election that might not be legal; Hamilton on the seven Texas universities that are making a play for Tier One status and Stiles on the mid-year cash-on-hand numbers reported by campaigns and political action committees: The best of our best from August 16 to 23, 2010.

Food Fight

Last week, Republicans loudly complained about a just-approved bill that would send $830 million in federal education funds to Texas with strings attached. But as Ben Philpott of KUT News and the Tribune reports, Democrats have their own reason to balk.

TribBlog: How Much Do Kids Count?

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Texas ranks 34th nationally in childhood well-being, has the third highest teen birth rate and is experiencing a rapid increase in child poverty, according to new numbers released today by the Annie E. Casey Foundation KIDS Count data center.