Federally administered poverty alleviation programs aren’t flexible or tailored enough to address the unique challenges that face poor families and individuals at the state or local level. Giving states flexibility to use federal funds for pilot poverty alleviation programs could help them design programs that effectively reduce poverty and respond to local needs.
The claim that poverty rates haven’t gone down since the start of the war on poverty is nonsense. On many measures, social safety net programs have reduced deep poverty and helped the working poor. Allowing states to divert funds from existing federal poverty relief programs through this bill could hurt the neediest and most vulnerable Americans.