The Effect of State Food Stamp and TANF Policies on Food Stamp Program Participation

Research Report

The Effect of State Food Stamp and TANF Policies on Food Stamp Program Participation

Abstract

This paper uses monthly SIPP data from 1996 through 2003 and state-level policy data to measure the effects of specific food stamp and welfare policies, as well as the minimum wage and EITC, on the food stamp receipt of the low-income population. We find strong evidence that more lenient vehicle exemption policies, longer recertification periods, and expanded categorical eligibility increase food stamp receipt and that the use of biometric technology reduces food stamp receipt. We also find some evidence that more lenient immigrant eligibility rules, simplified reporting, implementation of the EBT program, and outreach spending increase food stamp receipt.

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