Two Senate Republicans identified a welfare loophole that allows ‘paid government volunteers’ in AmeriCorps to receive food stamps from Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program — for which they should not qualify, as a rule — in addition to a stipend from the government.

“The role of the SNAP program isn’t to provide additional money to paid government volunteers; it is to help feed hungry American families,” Sen. John Thune, R-N.D., said in a statement today. Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., the ranking Republican on the Budget Committee added that “we’ve learned that a separate government agency—whose mission is to encourage volunteerism and community service—is using a loophole to further expand welfare enrollment without regard to need or qualification.”

The two lawmakers wrote a letter to Wendy Spencer, CEO of Corporation for National Service, to ask about officials encouraging volunteers to double-dip — to receive food stamps and the stipend. Under current law, a person can only receive both if he or she was already receiving food stamps before joining the volunteer program.

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