One Wednesday I met with the leaders of the Texas Department of Agriculture charged with delivery of all the food and nutrition programs designed to assist and lift low-income Texas families.
Here' just one fact they dropped on me:
In 2008, Dallas County left well over $479,000,000 (that's MILLION) on the table a a result of not enrolling everyone eligible for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, the food stamp program). But, get this: the entire state left $3,637,063,215 unused--yes, that's BILLION!
Think with me people.
Forget the poor.
Don't give them a second thought here.
Over four-hundred and seventy-nine MILLION dollars that could have been spent in local retail grocery stores. You know, Kroger, Target, Tom Thumb, Safeway, Walmart and others. Over $3.6 BILLION statewide lost to retail grocery sales!
The estimated local impact lost to our sluggish economy when you factor in the standard multiplier effect rises to over $750 million dollars! Estimates are that the total lost economic impact statewide is $6.7 BILLION!
Given our current need for economic stimulation, why would the State of Texas or the City of Dallas settle for this lost revenue that could create many jobs? Where in the world are the retail and wholesale grocers' trade groups?
What you're looking at here is a new definition of stupid.