Two weeks after declaring a “War on Fat,” S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley has yet to follow up on her opening salvo.
Haley announced last month that South Carolina would be requesting a waiver from the federal government – one requiring food stamp recipients to make healthier choices.
However according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the agency “has not received a waiver request from South Carolina” yet.
Instead, “USDA received a letter of interest from South Carolina regarding efforts to improve SNAP participant choices,” an agency spokesman told us.
Not only that, we’re told the letter arrived after Haley’s press conference announcing her initiative.
Sources close to Haley tell FITS the governor is waiting to hold “public hearings” on the waiver request prior to sending it off to Washington, D.C. Those hearings will reportedly begin at the end of the March.
Haley’s “War on Fat” hasn’t been the public relations coup the governor was hoping for. Not only was she flat out owned on the issue by S.C. Rep. Bakari Sellers (D-Bamberg), but the behind-the-scenes battle over the credit for the initiative exposed a major rift within her administration.
More to the point, South Carolina doles out $1.4 billion worth of food stamps each year … not very efficiently, either. In fact the S.C. Department of Social Services (SCDSS) – the agency which administers the Palmetto State’s food stamp program – has been accused of artificially lowering its error rate in an effort to secure additional funding from the federal government.