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NY Senate introduces bill to block 'luxury items' from food stamp recipients

Republican state Sen. Patty Ritchie introduced the bill, which would restrict the types of purchases that can be made through New York's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

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The program is more commonly called the food stamp program.

The bill aims to prevent recipients from buying non-nutritious items and what Ritchie calls "luxury" food items.

"At a time when our state and nation are struggling with an obesity epidemic, it is critically important that taxpayer-funded programs help low-income consumers make wise and healthy food choices," according to a memo that accompanied the bill.

The Journal News reported that the legislation would require the state Office of Temporary Disability Assistance to create a list of prohibited luxury items.

The bill outlines some examples, including energy drinks, some steaks, and decorated cakes.

A 2007 report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture said "serious concerns emerge regarding the feasibility and rationale for the proposed restriction (on certain foods)."

Fox News reported that because theState Assembly is majority-Democrat, the bill likely won't become law.

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